We Were There - 27 East


Southampton Press / Opinion / Letters / 1818800

We Were There

“We” are writing in response to the article of September 16 [“Group Wants To Move Windmill Back To Southampton Village, 27east.com, September 15]. We are the more than 10,000-strong Southampton College alumni, the Colonials.

We have loved our windmill since 1963, 58 years. Where were you?

We loved it in the 1960s, when Dr. and Mrs. John Luongo lived there; when we attended Dean’s List Teas there with Dr. and Mrs. Edward Glanz; when Dr. Gorman held religious services there; when students sledded down its hills on cafeteria trays; when fellow alums exchanged their wedding vows there; when we studied under its blades; when we read our school newspaper, “The Windmill,” there; when we fought the Scotch Mist Fire there in 1968 with our campus fire brigade; when we were seniors and wore our class rings with “Our Windmill” engraved on them; and when we graduated alongside it, and our proud parents took our photos, with our caps and gowns on, under it.

We were there. Where were you?

We loved it in the 1970s, when we started going to reunions there; we attended the annual lighting; we attended private parties there; when alums who were now teachers brought their students on field trips there and learned about the history of windmills.

We were there. Where were you?

We loved it in the 1980s and 1990s, when we received our graduate degrees there; celebrated many more reunions there; brought our own children there to experience it; toured the campus, renowned Marine Science Center and attended events at the Avram Theater; while we continued to shop and support our Southampton Village businesses.

We were there. Where were you?

We loved it in the new millennium, when we fought to save the college; won a lawsuit; wore attire with “Our Windmill” embellished on it; started bringing our own grandchildren there; and dedicated a bench to the memory of Southampton College President Dr. Harry A. Marmion, where it still is.

We were there. Where were you?

We loved it in 2012, when Stony Brook University invested $50,000 to install a new yoke, and an anonymous alum contributed to restore the interior; and when, in July 2013, we witnessed a dedication, declaring it a National Literary Landmark, because Tennessee Williams, lived, wrote and slept in “Our Windmill’ the summer of 1957 while writing “The Day on Which a Man Dies,” written in response to the death of his dear friend, Jackson Pollock.

We were there. Where were you?

However, we would be pleased if the Southampton Village group would like to construct a replica in the village of “Our Windmill” and start your own memories. After all, imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.

We would be happy to be there with you for its dedication.

Joan DiPaola Tutt


Ms. Tutt is a 1968 and 1974 graduate of Southampton College and president of the Class of 1968 — Ed.