Farmingville Mystery Challenge

“A form could be seen, riding about College Hills on a horse, holding a baby.”

Was this the ghost of Arismith Smith? When she died July 5, 1873, her father, Eliphalet Smith buried her near her horse somewhere in the field, remarking that she wasn’t fit to be buried in a cemetery with decent folks. He is supposed to have planted a lilac bush at the head and a rose bush at the foot of her grave. Her father’s house was located near the 1850 One-Room Schoolhouse according to a handwritten map from 1857.

What happened to Arismith Smith? Is her ghost still haunting College Hills? Was she murdered? Why is her ghost holding a baby? Where is her grave located?

Put your research and investigative skills to use and help us solve this 1873 Farmingville mystery. The individual or group who gets us closer to solving this mystery will receive a $100 cash prize.

Want to participate?

  1. REGISTER: There is a small Historical Society donation of $5 to participate. The donation covers some administrative costs. Complete the form below to register. Once submitted, the form will direct you to Paypal where you can pay via credit or debit card. CLICK HERE TO REGISTER
  2. VIRTUAL CALL: Attend our virtual call on Wednesday, February 10, 2021, 7PM to get access to all of the historical information and maps that we have about the family, where they lived, where they attended church, and who they knew. We will discuss potential resources that can be accessed.
  3. RESEARCH: Start your investigation. (February 10 – March 31, 2021)
  4. REPORT: A written report in Microsoft Word, a Google Doc or something similar including all of your findings must be submitted by 4/1/2021. All resources must be documented including weblinks, publication names, dates, and scanned images of paperwork that is not digital. If you need help with scanning, we would be happy to help you. Just reach out to All of your research and documentation becomes the property of the Farmingville Historical Society, Inc. Credit will be given to the researcher or research team.
  5. WINNER: A winner will be announced on 4/30/2021. A summary of the research will be published via blog, social media, newsletter, and more. The winner will go to the person/team who provides the most thorough research around the story. It doesn’t necessarily mean that the person or group will solve the mystery completely as we may never reveal the true story. 

Farmingville Historical Society Goals

  • Engage our local community to help gather information and solve this Farmingville mystery.
  • Get our community EXCITED about local history!
  • Bring more awareness about the mission and programs offered by the Farmingville Historical Society.
  • Help promote local businesses that partner with the Historical Society to help sustain and grow our programs.
Mystery Research flyers that you can download:

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