In the mid-1930s an organization called the German-American Bund established fifteen summer camps throughout the United States, including one in a small mid-Suffolk village. Set on a wooded lakefront in Yaphank, an Indian name meaning “Valley of Peace,” the camp served as a summer place for youngsters and as a weekend campground for adults. On Sundays, a special train would leave Penn Station headed directly to Yaphank, filled with people looking forward to spending the day in the country. This presentation discusses the work and the propaganda activities of the Bund at the time when the threat of Nazism seemed foreign to the U.S., certainly to Long Island. It also underlines the role that Camp Siegfried played in spreading Nazi propaganda in our own backyard, until it went out of business after the summer of 1939.
Join Marisa Hollywood, Associate Director of the Kupferberg Holocaust Center (KHC) at Queensborough Community College CUNY, for an illustrated lecture based on the KHC’s exhibition – Goose Stepping on Long Island: Camp Siegfried. The exhibit, which opened in 2010 at the Center, includes historic images from the Thomas R. Bayles Collection of the Longwood Public Library.