Where was Dog’s Hole Highway? Tony Tiska? More Hamptons Place Names


The Amagansett Lanes were becoming an elegant, tony part of the East End by 1926. There was just one little problem: one of the main streets was called the inelegant name of Dog’s Hole Highway. The residents petitioned the name for a name change, and ever since it’s been known as Hedges Lane.

Tony Tiska’s Path is a short cul-de-sac off Loper’s Path in Bridgehampton. The Tiskas owned 223 acres of woodland, orchards, and fields planted in corn, potatoes, oats, wheat, and hay on the east side of Millstone Road. The family, by the 1940s, consisted of “Gump” Tiska and his brother Anthony Tiska, with Anthony’s children “Spunky” and “Tony.”

Some names are strictly descriptive: Toilsome Lane in East Hampton and Toylsome in Southampton (originally named Toilsome). Hayground was noted for fields of hay.

Mount Misery Drive in Sag Harbor was known as stony, hilly land, unfarmable, so because of the steep hills, going across the land was miserable.

Skunk’s Hole (a little pond in Napeague) was probably named after the smell coming from the bunker fish oil factory upwind.

Roses Grove, however, in North Sea was the home of the Rose family.

Speaking of Napeague, that’s a Native American word meaning “restaurant available for lease.” Oh, we kid. It means “the water land.”

Another Native word, or garbled Native word, is Copeces Lane by the head of Three Mile Harbor. The name refers to “a little harbor,” or “a little place of shelter,” literally “a place shut in.” Originally the name referred to the inner harbor which is enclosed by two sandy points of land with a small passage between.

Georgica, which sounds like an English word, may be. The place name comes from a Native American who lived on Georgica Neck (now Cove Hollow Farm Road and Briar Patch). He was called Jeorgkee on a 1679 whaling document.

Conscience Point in North Sea, where the first white settlers landed in Southampton in 1657, supposedly got its name from a settler, who, on reaching land, reportedly looked heavenward and said, ”For conscience’s sake, we’ve hit land!”

Whooping Hollow Road (between East Hampton and Sag Harbor) was named after settlers heard Natives “whooping it up” there.

Hither Hills was named after the heather that formerly dotted the grasslands of Montauk. One rumor says it was named for ”the hither side of town,” as in hither and yon. But that’s not true.