2006-03-30 / Editorial

This week in Island history

Compiled by Sue Maden Week of March 30

The news of 10 and 15 years ago is from the Jamestown Press. The news of 25, 50, 75, and 100 years ago from the Newport Daily News comes from the collection of the Newport Historical Society.

100 years ago From the Newport Daily News, March 26, 1906:

An opposition ferry between Jamestown and Newport from present indications seems assured. This morning steam lighter Archer of Fall River unloaded spiling on Knowles's north dock and later Mr. Stillman Saunders' steamer Gypsy with a spile driver arrived. . . . This makes it doubtful if a dock is to be built at this point after all , as no information is forthcoming from Mr. Saunders other than that he will establish an opposition ferry as near at the foot of Narragansett avenue as possible.

Aparty from Jamestown will attend the hearing in Providence tomorrow on the harbor line of Jamestown.

From the Newport Daily News, March 28, 1906:

The burning of steamer Plymouth made a brilliant spectacle at Jamestown, the alarm and the brilliant illumination awakening a large proportion of the townspeople in the east part of the town and many others who were farther away, near the west ferry. The local volunteer firemen, especially the younger members, express regret that they were not given a chance to show their appreciation of the services rendered by the Newport firemen at the Caswell hotel fire, a dozen years ago, and more recently, when in response to an appeal for aid from an unknown person, when a small fire was discovered on Narragansett avenue, the Newport department quickly assembled on Market square to render assistance to the neighboring town.

From the Newport Daily News, March 29, 1906:

The local poultry market should be well supplied during the coming summer, as an unusually large number of extensive plants, and all report good hatches owing to the mild spring.

75 years ago From the Newport Daily News, March 27, 1931:

(At the town council meeting a number of persons) petitioned the town council to have a sum of money appropriated at the financial town meeting for the purpose of construction of a stone road on Eldred avenue and to run in a westerly to direction to the westerly boundary of Cedar cemetery, on Eldred avenue.

A permit was granted William H. Weicker to operate a miniature golf course and auto services station, with 1,000 gallon capacity storage tanks; also construction of above, with the necessary features, caddy house or buildings, etc. to conduct business in an efficient manner, on his property on Green lane

From the Newport Daily News, March 28, 1931:

The two-act play, "Around the Blue Wigwam," was presented by the Dramatic Club of the Thomas H. Clarke School in the school hall last evening.

From the Newport Daily News, March 30, 1931:

The students of the eighth grade of the Thomas H. Clarke school, went on a hike Saturday, their objective being the Gilbert Stuart house. They were chaperoned by Miss Clare Weicker, teacher in the Clarke school.

From the Newport Daily News, March 31, 1931:

The four ponds at the Beavertail Country Club are full to overflowing and add materially to the already beautiful setting of the course.

50 years ago From the Newport Daily News, March 28, 1956:

Five employees of the Jamestown Ferry Authority, all over 70 years of age, are allowed to continue employment another year under a bill passed by the General Assembly yesterday and sent to the Governor Roberts for signature.

From the Newport Daily News, March 29, 1956:

Continued opposition to introducing a bill for a police court setup in Jamestown was expressed yesterday by Sen. Alton Head Jr., Jamestown Republican. He said that of the 33 Jamestown arraignments in Newport District Court in 1955, all but possibly one were made under Rhode Island statutes, which meant that the fines went directly to the state. . . . Of the 33 arraignments, 22 were for parking law violations under the motor vehicle code, six were for breaking and entering, two for assault, two for larceny and one for reveling.

25 years ago From the Newport Daily News, March 25, 1981:

Revaluation may be coming up in a few years for this island community. The Town Council was told Monday night about methods used to revalue property in Scituate, a town similar in size and rural geography to Jamestown. . . . Michael W. Sands, manager of SLF Inc. from Scowhaegen, Maine, whose firm recently did the revaluation in Scituate, explained methods used by his firm and steps to be taken to complete a revaluation. Twelve months is the normal time.

From the Newport Daily News, March 26, 1981:

The Town Council endorsed a bill to change the state flag at the request of a Jamestown resident at this week's meeting. . . . If passed the bill would make the Revolutionary War regimental flag the official state flag.

From the Newport Daily News, March 30, 1981:

Participants in the third annual Youth Choir Celebration were given a standing ovation Sunday afternoon at St. Matthew's Church by the congregation which packed the church. . . . The music represented the seasons of the church from Advent to Easter.

15 years ago From the Jamestown Press, March 28, 1991:

The Town Council wants the state Department of Transportation to allow bicycle and pedestrian travel on the new Jamestown Bridge. In a 4-0 vote, the council Monday night passed a motion to send a letter to the DOT asking them to reverse their decision to restrict bridge use to vehicle traffic only.

Further plans were made to address the future of the Jamestown Golf and Country Club at Monday night's Town Council meeting. Council President Victor Calabretta presented plans to form a Country Club Committee. The committee will research and recommend action on the country club's second floor, and address long-term ownership issues of the properties and the building.

10 years ago From the Jamestown Press, March 28, 1996:

North Pond reservoir is full and all restrictions on water use have been lifted. Public Works Director Steven Goslee said Tuesday that water was trickling over one corner of the reservoir's spillway. Last September, with only 34 inches of consumable water left in North Pond, town officials declared a water emergency and banned all outdoor water uses.

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