Our History

The Mill Neck Family of Organizations

Mill Neck Manor had its beginnings in 1944 at the LCMS Saginaw Convention. A resolution was passed to raise funds commemorating the 50th anniversary of the Synod’s ministry to the Deaf in order to establish a school for Deaf children. Money was raised for the cause for four years, and a group of pastors and laymen from the New York area began to meet about setting up the school. In 1947 the group incorporated as the charitable, non-profit corporation Lutheran Friends of the Deaf.

In 1949, Lutheran Friends of the Deaf purchased 86-acre “Sefton Manor” from Lillian Sefton Dodge for only $216,000. In 1951, four years after Lutheran Friends of the Deaf incorporated, Mill Neck Manor Lutheran School opened to 19 Deaf boys and girls. By 1956, Mill Neck Manor was fully accredited by New York State.

Other important dates:

  • September 14, 1958: The John of Beverley Chapel was dedicated.
  • Spring 1962: Mill Neck’s library opened.
  • June 1967: Mill Neck held first graduation for two students.
  • 1968: The physical education building was dedicated.
  • 1972: The Samuel J. and Evelyn L. Wood Memorial Building was dedicated.
  • 1979: The Mill Neck Foundation was formed.
  • 1984: The Infant/Toddler Program opened.
  • 1986: Mill Neck Services launches first project.
  • 1986: Mill Neck Audiology Clinic was established.
  • 1991: The Early Childhood Center opened.
  • 2000: Mill Neck Services opens Day Habilitation Program.
  • 2002: Mill Neck Manor’s new Deaf Education Center opened.
  • 2003: First Auditory/Oral Preschool Class opens at Deaf Education Center.
  • 2003: Early Childhood Center opens first Integrated, Community-Based Class.
  • 2006: Mill Neck Audiology renovated.
  • 2009: New Facility opens for Mill Neck Interpreter Service and Mill Neck Services Day Habilitation Program.
  • 2012:  Renovation of Mill Neck Manor Early Childhood Center


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