Just as Ward and Dorothy Melville envisioned a colonial-style village that would breathe new life into the area, which included the crescent-shaped Village Center with connected shops grouped around a federalist-style post office, they were also concerned with environmental and historic preservation.
Their patronage continued long after the completion of the new Stony Brook Village Center.
Land and monetary donations to various organizations made them champions of local causes. Today, The Ward Melville Heritage Organization (WMHO) perpetuates their vision and teaches people the significance of their contributions to the Long Island community. The list of properties owned by the organization includes:
Stony Brook Grist Mill c. 1751
Thompson House c. 1710
Brewster House c. 1665
The 11-acre T. Bayles Minuse Mill Pond Park and two-acre Upper Pond
The WMHO Educational & Cultural Center
Hercules Statue c. 1820
The Jazz Loft
The Ernst Marine Conservation Center and 88-Acre Wetlands Preserve
Wetlands Discovery Cruises
Three Village Society for Lending Aids to the Sick
The Stony Brook Museums buildings and grounds and The Hawkins-Mount House c. 1725
WMHO also conducts many educational programs throughout the year.