Saturday talk on Alonzo Chappel
“The First Meeting of George Washington and Alexander Hamilton” by Alonzo Chappel. Chappel was known for his paintings of the American Revolution and other events.

Courtesy photo

Saturday talk on Alonzo Chappel


If local landscapes look ho-hum right now, chances are they weren’t years ago. Many had an impact.

Take Artist Lake, for example, a Middle Island body of water 20 minutes north of Bellport Village. It captured Alonzo Chappel’s imagination, so much so that he moved to the site and started an artists’ colony there.

Suzanne Johnson, Longwood Library’s former director, will discuss this fascinating artist in her program, “Alonzo Chappel: The Infamous Artist of Artist Lake,” this Saturday, Feb. 9 at 5 p.m. at the Bellport-Brookhaven Historical Society’s Brown Building.

It’s free for members and guests, but donations are always welcome. Or become a member and join for a heads-up on the interesting Artists and Authors series, summer exhibition program and holiday party. (P.S. These members are fun!)

Johnson explained her interest. The Longwood Library had a significant local history section and Chappel was in there, but also Artist Lake is located just east of the library on Middle Country Road.

“It’s a picturesque scene and had a much nicer history than what you see driving by right now,” Johnson said, noting the Fairview at Artist Lake apartment complex currently on its perimeter. “This artist chose to move from Brooklyn to Middle Island in 1869. He bought the property and built an impressive house in 1870 that’s no longer there.

“His most active period was from 1854 to 1874. He was famous and was very well known and then disappeared from history.”

Hmmm. Why don’t we know more about this man?

“In my slide talks, I tell you why,” Johnson said.