Gardiner Emerson Gregory

February 27, 1917-- December 15, 2005

General Information

Gardiner E. Gregory was the co-founder (with his late wife, Anne Church Gregory) and first director of the Hicksville Gregory Museum.  Born in Standish, Maine, he graduated in 1939 from Colby College, Waterville, Maine with an A.B (Dean's List) in Social Studies.  An avid photographer from the time he received his first box camera at the age of 10, he was  the photo editor of the Colby College Collegiate Digest, and he also had several of his works exhibited at the 1939 New York World's Fair.  After graduation he was a classroom teacher in Maine for several years before becoming principal of Castine (Maine) High School .  He was an officer, instructor and coach at nearby Maine Maritime Academy where there are many of his photos of academy life in the archives.

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      During his tenure at Castine High School and Maine Maritime Academy, he worked towards a Master's degree  (M.A. 1946) in Education at the University of Maine (where he also taught summer sessions).  For the next few years he was a principal at several high schools in Maine and New Hampshire before moving to New Jersey in 1950.


     He was director of audio-visual education for the North Plainfield (NJ) Public Schools until 1956, and found time to  continue studies towards a Ph.D. at Rutgers University; be the director of the Somerset County YMCA Summer Camp; and serve as a scoutmaster.  In the fall of 1956 he moved to Hicksville to become a social studies teacher and audio-visual coordinator in the high school.  The following year he was appointed the curriculum materials director for the Hicksville Public Schools.  In this capacity he directed the work of the individual school curriculum materials coordinators, but was also responsible for producing narrated slide sets, film strips and motion pictures for use in the classroom.

      In 1963 he opened the Museum at his Cottage Boulevard home and when the Museum outgrew that home he and his wife Anne enlisted the help of many Hicksville residents and businesses to help renovate the abandoned Heitz Place Courthouse and move the Museum there in 1973.  He also established in 1960 a wildflower preserve in Danville, NH which he and Anne later turned over to the Nature Conservancy. "Greg" retired from the Hicksville schools in 1977 and moved  back to Orland, Maine.  But even though he was retired he was far from retiring.  He opened a smaller version of the museum in his basement in Maine and found time to organize and be president of the Castine Historical Society.  He also had created an orchard and wildflower meadow on his land that bordered the Bagaduce River estuary.

     Several years ago, after the death of his wife, he moved to Wallingford, Connecticut where he died on December 15, 2005.  He is survived by  his two step daughters, Susan Palle and Linda Leisentritt, both of New Jersey; his two sisters Patricia Warner of Indiana and Jean Hart of Missouri and several nieces and nephews.  He was buried in a private service in Castine Cemetery, Castine Maine.

The Hicksville Gregory Museum
1 Heitz Place
Hicksville, NY  11801-3101

To contact us:
Phone: 516-822-7505
Fax: 516-822-3227

© 2013 The Hicksville Gregory Museum