Long Island provides, in microcosm and on a compressed time scale, an example of the sort of interaction between humans and their environment common to many Pacific islands. The current period of human occupancy of Long Island began sometime during the nineteenth century but until World War II the island remained isolated and population growth remained low. Since that time population growth has accelerated, contacts with the outside world have increased and the islanders are now beginning to enter a cash economy. The effects of these processes on the human society and its interactions with the environment are summarized. Major areas covered include human settlement and population growth, aspects of social organisation, wild resources and their use, outside influences affecting island society, the current status of the Long Island economy and possible future development options.