Within the past twenty or thirty years, houses have mushroomed all over the Montauk hills. It is no longer just a summer resort. It has gained year-round community status. Suddenly, within the past few years, a strong civic conscience and pride have created organizations for zoning and beautification. Montauk oldtimers and newcomers have also become increasingly aware of their historic heritage.
The Montauk Historical Society was incorporated in January 1962, organized that November, and on May 18, 1963, elected the late Richard T. Gilmartin as its first president. Clifford Stanley was vice president, Mrs. Samuel Joyce, Jr., and William Cooper, secretary and treasurer. At the official opening date for the Second House museum, in 1969, the officers were: Mrs. Joyce, president; Mrs. Richard T. Gilmartin, vice president; Mrs. Charles Wallace, secretary, and William Burke, treasurer.
The Montauk Historical Society is a privately funded, non-profit organization dedicated to preserving the history of Montauk. The Montauk Historical Society also operates the Second House Museum in Montauk, which is the site of three Art & Crafts Fairs that take place on the Second House Museum grounds at the west end of the village. (As well as The Montauk Lighthouse and the Montauk Indian Museum)