PAULA'S SOUTHAMPTON BLOG: TELL ME A STORY ....A Story About Real Estate and Local Information…

TELL ME A STORY ....A Story About Real Estate and Local Information…


TELL ME A STORY ....A Story About Real Estate and Local Information…PICTURE PERFECT OCEAN FRONT

 Note: This is part of a series of posts about the importance of blogging to real estate agents and brokers--starting it, keeping it going and doing it with continuity. We are in the middle of a major shift in real estate brokerage; I feel as professionals we have an opportunity to lay claim to what we thought we had but we don't--our local real estate market. Trulia and Zillow and the like have taken the most valuable thing we have: Our listings and our content! Now we can reclaim them by becoming the informed as well as the informer in our niche areas! The buying and selling public NEEDS our local knowledge in order to make informed decisions! The Syndicates, the Trulia and Zillow’s of the world don’t have local knowledge....They don't live here!


Seven years ago, I decided to start blogging---Barely knowing what Blogging meant, I jumped into it with both feet and started telling stories about where I live. I found that local history about Southampton was rich and available to those who cared to seek out and to study the details of this, the earliest English settlement on Long Island. I wrote about local families and local historical spots, little known to those outside the area.


Using a Cornell University Library book written by George Rogers Howell, a family member of one of the earliest Grassy wetlands protected as a wildlife refugelocal families, I did research on life the way it was in the 1600’s through the 1800’s. I discovered that life in these hamlets and towns that make up what we know today as the Hamptons was a real representation of the first American farms on the rich and fertile land here at the end of Long Island. It began a way of life that did not take root in the Midwest and other parts of the USA until almost a hundred years later!


I used photos of houses, the beaches, the tributaries of the Great Peconic Bay, SouthamptonVillage and surrounding areas and I used the "tales" and “lore” of the first families for local interest stories. This included talking about “What It Was Before It Is What It Is” as in the former McCarthy’s which is now the Southampton Brewery…..or the current Southampton Town Marina with its large restaurant building, once known as “Conscience Point Dinner Club” and the place where the 1998 Lizzie Grubman scandal happened. A local tragedy where she ran down 9 people as she left the night club drunk, was the talk of the day. That story made our revered “Conscience Point” a place of scandal rather than its proper historical identity as a place where the earliest colonists stepped foot on this land known as Long Island. 

Appropriate to the name, the very first settlement called "Olde Towne" is found today in Southampton Village where 5 roads meet: Old Town Road, Wyandanch Lane, Toylsome Lane, Old Town Crossing and Wickapogue Road all converge right at the same spot that the first settlers lived. There, on a slight rise or small hill in the roadside is a sign A typical style of Village house, reminicent of the 18th and 19th century housesembedded on a large rock. The sign gives the information about the homes or dugouts that were built there on that hill for these pioneers. Some had underground huts with sod roofs; some were literally carved out of the slight hillside with the grass as the insulation in the summer and the solid ground as the bulwark to the winter’s cold.

As I was writing these vignettes, little did I know that what I was doing was beginning a story line; a story line about where I live and what I love to do here...a story line that I have kept going now for several years.

It has been my intention to make the colorful and highly regarded local landscapes, seascapes and the fascinating word of mouth stories that have survived these many years, come alive again and bring a focus on the real beauty and treasure of this place called Southampton. 

 After writing a story about Post Lane here in Southampton Village and it's  history, I was astounded when I got an email from the descendant of one of the founders of Southampton, New York! He found my blog online and contacted me to correct some of the history of his family.


An early summer cottage now renovated and up to dateRichard Post is a Great Grandson of the founder of Southampton Village, eight times removed! He and I connected via email and since he lives in the UK and may never ever get here to see the place his ancestor founded, it was gratifying to communicate with him! He found me when he did a Google search of Southampton Village and found a post I had written about Post Lane, a little known and historical street right here in the heart of Southampton Village. Named after Richard Post’s ancestral family, the street is less than 1/4 of mile long and was the original driveway to the Post family farm. The farm consisted of the greater part of what we now know as Southampton Village. It covered the entire East side of the Village proper and also of what is now known as the Old Town and the Little Plains area.   

Richard Post carries the same name as the man who owned most of Southampton Village in the 17th century. The first Richard Post was one of the first settlers here in 1640's and the King of England had bestowed upon him the greater piece of land that now lies in the central part of the Village, from the Railroad station (Long before it was built, of course) all the way South to the Atlantic Ocean.

The resulting leads that I have gotten from that one blog post is astounding! Not only did I get great leads, Post Lane has become the "hottest" street in Southampton Village. There have been 6 home sales on the street, each one selling for more than the last one. It is now established as a favorite street for young and extended families and is the place A waterfront in North Seawhere new houses have captured record prices.

What a story to tell...and it goes on, because as long as there is another story to tell about this area, I will tell it! The idea of blogging has made me realize the importance of what I know about the area where I sell real estate. My competitors are not as lucky as I am to have discovered the power of blogging--not only that, it is something I love to do and it is easier than many of the other things I must do in this business.

Blogging humanizes the real estate professional; it humanizes us better than any other form of marketing and we need that! 






                                     **ALL INFORMATION AND CONTENT IN THIS BLOG IS ORIGINAL TO PAULA I. HATHAWAY.  The views expressed herein are my personal views and do not reflect the views of Douglas Elliman Real Estate


Paula I. Hathaway, Senior Broker Associate, Douglas Elliman Real Estate

Southamtpon Village Real Estate Specialist since 1995;  Also Specializes in North Sea, Noyac, Water Mill and Bridgehampton, New York

Diamond , Gold and Chairman's Circle Awards; Top Producer since 2005


Click here to see my Hampton's website to see all my listings; please email me or call me for all your real estate needs in Southampton, Bridgehampton and Watermill:



Comment balloon 51 commentsPaula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA • August 23 2013 06:35PM


Paula I know for a fact that writing about a local area brings connection and business.  Like in your case I have had people contact me to share even more history about something I have written about.

I am sure Mr.  Post was delighted to see your Blog, it must have brought back many memories of his family.

Keep writing about the Southhampton; our knowledge of the areas where we work is the only trump card we have left.

Posted by Jennifer Fivelsdal, Mid Hudson Valley real estate connection ( JFIVE Home Realty LLC | 845-758-6842|162 Deer Run Rd Red Hook NY 12571) over 5 years ago

Paula - This is a really smart approach.  Yes, both of our areas have some rich history and I find it fascinating to read about.  That is so cool when you strike a chord with someone.

Posted by Debbie Gartner, The Flooring Girl & Blog Stylist -Dynamo Marketers (The Flooring Girl) over 5 years ago

Paula, people love to read about their community and any community they're considering.

Posted by Margaret Woda, Maryland Real Estate & Military Relocation (Long & Foster Real Estate, Inc.) over 5 years ago

People love to read about communities and the story behind them.  Sometimes even locals learn something new when they read a blog from someone who has taken the time to tell the story.

Posted by Cindy Jones, Pentagon, Fort Belvoir & Quantico Real Estate News (Integrity Real Estate Group) over 5 years ago

Paula: You can reallly get someone motivated about blogging about their hometown and its history. I have been to the Hamptons many times, since I grew up on Long Island. You have done a great job on the area and a great job motivating me.  Sincerely,  Jim

Posted by Jimmy Faulkner, The Best Of St. Augustine (Florida. Homes Realty & Mortgage) over 5 years ago

Paula, blogging also has education value. Learned a lot about Southhampton Village today. Connecting with Richard Post was an added bonus. You are also right about one thing, real estate is local.

Posted by Michael Setunsky, Your Commercial Real Estate Link to Northern VA over 5 years ago

Paula, there is something magical that happens when people hear stories about where they live. They see the same things they've always seen, but in a different light! Your Post Street example really shows how that works. Great post!

Posted by Tom White, Franklin Homes Realty LLC, Franklin TN (Franklin Homes Realty LLC (615) 495-0752 or over 5 years ago

Information as the local resource, tour guide and being the first person online to make a connection is a very beautiful thing. For business, as a person, a real estate agent, broker providing service. Our job wearing the blue and gold R. Showing them you are a real person, beyond the list, market, sell (repeat) with color, flavor, unique spark.

Posted by Andrew Mooers | 207.532.6573, Northern Maine Real Estate-Aroostook County Broker (MOOERS REALTY) over 5 years ago

Paula, very interesting.  I found your post to be informative and extremely well written.  Have you ever considered becoming a professional writer?

Posted by Chris and Dick Dovorany, Broker/Associate at Premiere Plus Realty ( Homes for Sale in Naples, Bonita Springs and Estero, Florida) over 5 years ago

Paula, it is amazing what can happen when telling a story about anything in your area the moment you click submit.  Those vignettes are heartwarming and give life to a place.

Posted by Geri Sonkin, Long Island Real Estate & Staging Expert (Douglas Elliman Real Estate 516-457-7103) over 5 years ago

Hello Paula,

love the narrative -- basically from a societal, cultural aspect of American history...through the vigorous aspect of building styles, customs, traditions and shaping from the initial Puritan social fabric to the vibrant mix it exudes today....also with an after thought of trying to grasp holistically the future of socio-economic and geo-political  developments...Thank you for a great post. To your success!

Posted by Peter Michelbach, i Sell Real Estate over 5 years ago

Jennifer: Your statement "Our knowledge of the areas where we work is the only trump card we have left." is so on target! Thank you for saying it so succinctly! We need to work on the local aspects especially; otherwise we disappear into the background and appear to the public as just another agent who has nothing to offer but an ability to sell. We need to inform the buying public of what it is they are looking for: knowledge of the area they want to live in.

Debbie: It is so cool! I went from just wrting about a street that I know well to being able to expand on the Village's historical records!

Margaret: Yes, and what better source that the person you more than likely have begun to build a relationship with--your reale state agent!



Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...The Most Informed Agent In The Hamptons! (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 5 years ago

Good Morning Paula:    This is some great Info on this area!!  keep up the good work and good luck with your business,  E

Posted by Ed & Tracy Oliva, The Oliva Team Arizona Agents (West USA Realty - Arizona) over 5 years ago


Love this - your sharing and knowledge of the Hamptons would make you a magnet for folks wanting to buy and sell there.  Folks want knowledgable, informative folks who can help them.  It just makes smart business sense AND feeds the soul.  Life is good.

All the best, Michelle

Posted by Michelle Francis, Realtor, Buckhead Atlanta Homes for Sale & Lease (Tim Francis Realty LLC) over 5 years ago

I would naturally gravitate toward this professional if I was going into her neighborhood...not doing so could be costly

Posted by Richie Alan Naggar, agent & author (people first...then business Ran Right Realty ) over 5 years ago

I completely agree we need to be humanized. And I've connected with some wonderful consumers turned client turned friends via writing my personal feelings about the community I love.

Posted by Tammy Lankford,, Broker GA Lake Sinclair/Eatonton/Milledgeville (Lane Realty Eatonton, GA Lake Sinclair, Milledgeville, 706-485-9668) over 5 years ago

Excellent encouragement, Paula. I'm in the process of setting up another blog that focuses on local fare. It should be a lot of fun creating a map for people visiting (and living in) our community.

Posted by Mike Cooper, Your Winchester, VA Real Estate Sales Pro (Cornerstone Business Group Inc) over 5 years ago

Cindy: You are so right! ...and "taking the time to tell the story" is the key; if we don't take the time then we lose an opportunity that is so valuable to this profession.

Jim: Glad to hear it! Do you know the number of times  have had someone tell me they have been here? I wish I had a dime for all who have said that to me---that gives me the encouragement to go on and to continue blogging about this fantastic part of Americana!

Michael: It is local--so local as a matter of fact, that unless you can tell the home buyers about the schools, the best stores, the playgrounds and other things of that nature, you are going to lose out to the one who does that.

Tom: Yes and isn't it nice that we can be the source of that knowledge? We can and we should inform our buyers about an area they are buying in. If we don't who will?...well, it just might be your competition!


Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...The Most Informed Agent In The Hamptons! (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 5 years ago

Andrew: As usual, you have said it all--beautifully!

Chris and Dick: Thank you so much for the highest compliment I could hear! Yes, I have considered it but every  time I read another writer, another writer who has written substantive articles and maybe even a book or two, I become very insecure. Unless I write a colum in a newspaper or other periodical, I don't think I can match up....just love to hear that thought though!

Geri:That's it! "gives life to a place" is the goal here and if that is done in a piece that I write i am satisfied...I have achieved my goal!

Peter: Thank myou so much for the encouragement--you are so good at that! :)


Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...The Most Informed Agent In The Hamptons! (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 5 years ago

I agree with you, Paula.  Blogging tells a story about where we live and work.  I also tells a story about us.  I enjoy your posts.

Posted by Sharon Parisi, Dallas Homes (United Real Estate Dallas ) over 5 years ago

Ed: Thank you--nice to see you are on the same wave lenght!

Michelle: Thank you so much for your recognition too of the "need to know" on the part of our customers! 

Richie: You are so right---My goal is to have the average buyer recognize that unless they have someone willing to share what they know about the community where they are about to spend their family fortune, they will continue to look!...that way they will find me. :)

Tammy: Humanization is the one thing that we as agents need to build. If we remain a distant and uninformed person we deserve to be treated that way! If we learn and in turn, inform then we are doing the very best thing for this profession.

Mike: You hit on something there that is a really great idea: "Creating a map for people visiting and  living in our community"...that is something that I had not thought of. As a young girl, living in a very rural area of Michigan--the state shaped like a mitten---I used to love to draw and color maps! That is a super way to get the point across about walking trails, playgrounds, beaches, restaurants and shops---what a great idea and the more primitive the drawing the more appealing to the public! Thanks for the geat idea!!!


Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...The Most Informed Agent In The Hamptons! (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 5 years ago

Sharon: Thanks and I hope you are able to get the attention you deserve when you write your stories. The internet is such a vaulable tool, is it not?


Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...The Most Informed Agent In The Hamptons! (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 5 years ago
I'm right there with you, Paula. In addition to providing industry intelligence to our clients and the public, we need to be acting as the Chamber of Commerce in a way. I've haven't been at it as long as you but I think we're on the same page.
Posted by Matt Kombrink, Your #1 Source For Real Estate (RE/MAX All Pro) over 5 years ago

Thank you so much for sharing all the information with us in regards to taking control back!  I have been in Real Estate for over 28 years and have done a little blogging but am going to ready start and stay with you.  Thank you for the insight.

Posted by Cheryl S . Glover, CIPS, CRS, Green, GRI, SFR, TRC, (Keller Williams Classic III Realty) over 5 years ago

Thank you for encouraging me, Paula.  I'm planning my next strategy for Dana Point, and plan on doing what you've been doing.

Posted by Raymond Denton, Simple Man (Academy Mortgage Corporation) over 5 years ago

Paula - I find blogging to be one of the more pleasant and fulfilling aspect of selling real estate. It sure beats peering down into an open septic tank.

Posted by Norma Toering Broker for Palos Verdes and Beach Cities, Palos Verdes Luxury Homes in L.A. (Charlemagne International Properties) over 5 years ago

What an interesting read Paula.  Great for a Saturday (drizzly, here in Portland OR) morning.  I do remember the socialite plowing down those people, it made the news even all the way out here.  And wonderful that the heritage of the founding father contacted you!  

Posted by Carla Muss-Jacobs, RETIRED (RETIRED / State License is Inactive) over 5 years ago

Excellent story and what a great way to blog about the things, people and places you love. Thanks for sharing your story and beautiful pictures.


Posted by Graziella Bruner, Associate Broker - Serving Wayne & Oakland County (NCS Premier Real Estate) over 5 years ago

Thanks for the great ideas. I have wanted to do more about my area, just didn't quite know how to go about.

Posted by Kelly Taylor (Keller Williams) over 5 years ago

Matt: It sounds like it to me. Local information is a place where you can mine for blog subject matter and always hit it right! I feel very comfortable about blogging about my area--the response I get is so valuable it's impossible to put a price on it.

Cheryl: You are on the right track in my may take a while to get the right response bu tit is welll worth it once that starts rooling in.

Raymond: Dana Point could be a geat place to write about! The more colorful and interesting an area the better and easier it is to write about it, naturally.

Norma: You are too funny! The mundane asspects of our business are certainly boring but I bet you could come up with a powerful blog post about septic maybe the different septic tank covers there are; are they decorative or just functional. Do they ever explode like manhole covers sometimes do or are they relatively harmless?....hehehe

Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...The Most Informed Agent In The Hamptons! (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 5 years ago

Carla: See? It's all about giving and the rewards can be monumental! I think that contact left me with the desire to really reach as many people as I can through bloggin and now I have to start doing more of it..I have gotten busy so it is not easy. That's why I am focusing on the local posts!

Graziela: Good! I hope you have been inspired to blog yourself...there are mountains of things to write about if you just listen to the I am working on a post about the humanzing factor of blogging---a great thing for real estate agents to realize and take advantage of!

Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...The Most Informed Agent In The Hamptons! (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 5 years ago

Paula you are one of the best bloggers when it comes to local area history. Your love for history and Southamption shines through in your posts. None can compare. 

Posted by Pamela Seley, Residential Real Estate Agent serving SW RivCo CA (West Coast Realty Division) over 5 years ago

Kelly: Then stay tuned because I am writing a post about the humanizing factor of blogging---the one thing we as real estate agents can use! There will be some really good ides in that post. Good luck with your local blogging too.

Pamela: Why, thank you so much! I do enjoy doing it so that must come through to the public...

Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...The Most Informed Agent In The Hamptons! (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 5 years ago

Paula, I came by for the story, and was so pleased I wanted to read more, so I subscribed.

Posted by Brian Sharkey, SharkeyRE - #SouthFloridaBroker (SharkeyRE LLC) over 5 years ago

Brian: Thank you so much. I hope to be posting another local post in the next day or so, so stay tuned!

Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...The Most Informed Agent In The Hamptons! (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 5 years ago

Paula - what a great idea and so well carried out! I realize that people can get this information at a library, but the way that you have woven the personal touch of meeting the people and tying their ancestors, really makes it feel alive - and just the place that someone would want to live. Thanks!

Posted by Susan Jacobsen, 20 Years Providing WOW Real Estate Service (The Alliance Group Realty) over 5 years ago

That's just fantastic!  Great story.

Posted by Brad MacKenzie, Turning Houses into Homes on the South Shore (Brad MacKenzie) over 5 years ago

Isn't it funny how a post like yours that drummed up so much action and leads may have been one that was just a rant about your area.  I had the same thing happen about a rant of mine about my immediate farm area talking about history etc.  I still get a lot of hits on it and comments from clients.  Wish I had a 1,000 of those posts!

Posted by Jay & Michelle Lieberman, Creating Calm in the Buying and Selling Chaos (Keller Williams World Class) over 5 years ago

The Destin Log has been running a series about the founding families of Destin. Interesting to read some of the journals written especially by the children. Different world today.

Posted by Bill Reddington, Destin Florida Real Estate (Re/max Southern Realty) over 5 years ago

I stand amazed at your blogging ability. I can't imagine the research time you have invested, although with your many hits and sales picking up, it has been worth it for you. A very inspiring post for us. Thank you.

Posted by Liz McGinley, Service with Integrity Indeed! (Florida Indeed Real Estate, Inc) over 5 years ago

Susan: You are so kind---I did know that when I was first living here in Southampton I was looking at homes--this was in the late 80's and I never forgot the person who I worked with--she was so informative and that made me want to live here--not only that it made me want to recommend her to others and I bought another house from her and then another house later on....This is what I am talking about!

Brad: Glad you enjoyed it! Now you can go do the same thing about your area! :)

Jay and Michelle: This was a sort of a rant--I am so sick and tired of people talking about the celebrity aspect of the Hamptons---as if that is the important thing about living here! ...and yes, we know that the posts that get the most attention are the ones written with the passion that is fresh from the heart---you just can't beat  fresh!!







Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...The Most Informed Agent In The Hamptons! (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 5 years ago

Bill: Isn't that something? How much of a treasure is that?...from the mouths of babes! I have to search to see what there is here at the museum from the chidren of the area back in the 16-1700's! Thanks for the idea!

Liz: ...Funny thing is I don't feel like I have spent a lot of time doing it---it's like I see something and I stop and read it or I watch others as they  talk about places and occurances and I go to museums and libraries just becuse I love the area---the benefits are so great that I will always be doing resarch! Thank you for the very high compliment and the recognition of the work I have done...




Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...The Most Informed Agent In The Hamptons! (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 5 years ago

Paula, it is true that we are providing a story line with our blogs, but I never thought that is what I was doing.  I am blogging things each day but not realize it was a story line and mine is, thank goodness.  Great feature!

Posted by Barbara Hensley, Homes for Sale in Rockwall County, Texas (RE/MAX Properties) over 5 years ago

It not only humanizes helps working with buyers and sellers to truly be the local expert...I surprise myself working with relocated buyers tell the all about the area and facts many people who live here do not know.

Posted by Sally K. & David L. Hanson, WI Realtors - Luxury - Divorce (EXP Realty 414-525-0563) over 5 years ago

Barbara: Good for you! I think it may seem immaterial that there is a story line that develops form you posts but it can make a big difference as to how many people follow your blog. If they think they can find out more about a place they will keep coming back! 

Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...The Most Informed Agent In The Hamptons! (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 5 years ago

Sally: You hit on sommething there---once you start evaluating how you handle your customers and clients it is amazing what you will discover: Many things that never come to mind with the avarage agent are things that I discuss freely with the buyer...and they come back tto me and send their friends to me.

Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...The Most Informed Agent In The Hamptons! (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 5 years ago

There are a lot of history buffs out there, so a great lead into real estate.

Posted by Edward & Celia Maddox, EXPERIENCE & INTEGRITY - WE TAKE THE HIGH ROAD (The Celtic Connection Realty) over 5 years ago

Hi Paula,

Great post. Yes, this type of knowledge -the local history putting together all the bits and peices for clients - are what makes us stand out from charts and disconnected numbers on the internet.

If selling Real Estate was only about filling out forms the computer companies could do it.

Thankfully it is not just about that.

Good reminder for all of us about what counts.


Posted by Michael Layton, Michael Layton 7604085300 (Big Block Realty) over 5 years ago

Michael: Thank you so much for recognizing that!  I think there are alot of agents who still think we are kidding about the importance of blogging to real estate! MOre annd more are catching on though and it looks like you have as well! 

Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...The Most Informed Agent In The Hamptons! (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 5 years ago

With the change in Google's algorithms, wordy blogs are getting so great Google juice

Posted by Jack O'Neal (Conway Real Estate) over 5 years ago

Jack: Wordy blogs!!! Is that what you have to say about my hard work??? :)

Posted by Paula Hathaway, REALTOR, LBA, ...The Most Informed Agent In The Hamptons! (Douglas Elliman Real Estate) over 5 years ago