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Editorial: History Boy

Dating back to its founding in 1869 by multi-millionaire Alexander Turney Stewart, the Village of Garden City has always enjoyed a rich and vibrant history that continues to be rightfully lauded by its current residents. St. Paul’s School for Boys, the Garden City Hotel and the Apostle Houses are just some of the architectural landmarks that are part of the unique aesthetic fiber that makes up the village. As such, it’s important for the community to have a steward of the community’s rich legacy.

Enter official village historian John Ellis Kordes. A Garden City native, Kordes has held that position since 1996 after graduating from Garden City High School and Adelphi University. A published author, newspaper columnist and documentary film producer, Kordes’ commitment to preserving the past was recently recognized by the Oyster Bay Historical Society (OBHS). This past Tuesday, July 10, he was honored in the inaugural event, “Long Island’s Top Advocates for Historic Preservation and Education.” Among the many actions he’s taken to honor the village’s rich history is to use his considerable photographic skills to create Garden City-themed postcards, calendars and posters, helped restore the Long Island Motor Parkway Garden City Toll Lodge, (current home of the Garden City Chamber of Commerce) and developed and taught a course on Garden City history through adult education in the public schools. So it’s no wonder that the OBHS deigned him a worthy honoree, a designation Garden City Life proudly congratulates him on achieving.

- DGdR