Long Island's Hidden Past: Abandoned nuclear fallout shelter

Posted: Updated:
COPIAGUE -

An abandoned school nuclear fallout shelter was discovered right underneath the feet of kindergarten students in Copiague.

It was hidden for decades, sealed up behind a cinder block and cement wall.

Mary Cascone, the Town of Babylon historian, says a Cold War time capsule was stumbled upon underneath the Great Neck Road Elementary School in Copiague. Maintenance workers needed to replace pipes in the school's basement, but mysteriously, one of the pipes went right through the cinder block wall.

"Taking down that cement block, they discovered a room," says Cascone. "It was always here, but people were just unaware of it."

But the most shocking: the room had been set up as a fallout shelter, filled with rows of chairs, drums of water and stacks of boxes. The boxes contained tins of biscuits, medical supplies, sanitation kits and instructions on how to survive in a fallout bunker after a nuclear attack.

The Cold War bunker serves as a reminder of what could have been.

Fallout shelters were found in town's across Long Island during the early 1960s. At one point, there were 65 bunkers just in the Town of Babylon.

Listen to the Hidden Past Long Island podcast for a full interview with historian Mary Cascone: 

  • SlideshowsGalleriesMore>>

  • Live-action 'Aladdin' film flies into theaters

    Live-action 'Aladdin' film flies into theaters

    The live-action Aladdin film flew into theaters Friday.
    The live-action Aladdin film flew into theaters Friday.
  • Dog Day Fridays for May 24

    Dog Day Fridays for May 24

    Friday, May 24 2019 10:42 AM EDT2019-05-24 14:42:57 GMT
    This week's dogs are up for adoption at Almost Home Animal Rescue & Adoption. The shelter is located at 646 Medford Ave. in Patchogue. Their phone number is (631) 627-3665.This week's dogs are up for adoption at Almost Home Animal Rescue & Adoption. The shelter is located at 646 Medford Ave. in Patchogue. Their phone number is (631) 627-3665.
    This week's dogs are up for adoption at Almost Home Animal Rescue & Adoption. The shelter is located at 646 Medford Ave. in Patchogue. Their phone number is (631) 627-3665.This week's dogs are up for adoption at Almost Home Animal Rescue & Adoption. The shelter is located at 646 Medford Ave. in Patchogue. Their phone number is (631) 627-3665.
    This week's dogs are up for adoption at Almost Home Animal Rescue & Adoption. The shelter is located at 646 Medford Ave. in Patchogue. Their phone number is (631) 627-3665.
    This week's dogs are up for adoption at Almost Home Animal Rescue & Adoption. The shelter is located at 646 Medford Ave. in Patchogue. Their phone number is (631) 627-3665.
  • 2019 Fleet Week New York

    2019 Fleet Week New York

    Fleet Week New York started May 22. This year marks the 31st annual event that features a week filled of activities, themed events and live demonstrations.Fleet Week New York started May 22. This year marks the 31st annual event that features a week filled of activities, themed events and live demonstrations.
    Fleet Week New York started May 22. This year marks the 31st annual event that features a week filled of activities, themed events and live demonstrations.Fleet Week New York started May 22. This year marks the 31st annual event that features a week filled of activities, themed events and live demonstrations.
    Fleet Week New York started May 22. This year marks the 31st annual event that features a week filled of activities, themed events and live demonstrations.
    Fleet Week New York started May 22. This year marks the 31st annual event that features a week filled of activities, themed events and live demonstrations.
sorry to interrupt
your first 20 are free
Access to News 12 is free for Optimum, Comcast®, Spectrum Networks® and Service ElectricSM customers.
Please enjoy 20 complimentary views of articles, photos, and videos during the next 30 days.
you have reached your 20 view limit
Access to News 12 is free for Optimum, Comcast®, Spectrum Networks® and Service ElectricSM customers.
Please login or create an account to continue enjoying News12.
Our sign-up page is undergoing maintenance and is not currently available. However, you will be given direct access to news12.com while we complete our upgrade.
When we are back up and running you will be prompted at that time to complete your sign in. Until then, enjoy the local news, weather, traffic and more that's "as local as local news gets."