2007-01-18 / Island History

This week in Island history

Compiled by Sue Maden

The news of 10 and 15 years ago is from the Jamestown Press. The news of 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, January 16, 1907:

A pleasing musical program was rendered at the meeting of the J. G. T. Club last evening at the home of Mrs. H. E. Stadler on Southwest Avenue. A Japanese supper was served, each one present receiving a Japanese souvenir. This club is popular with the young people, several members being initiated last evening.

From the Newport Daily News, January 17, 1907:

A number of young men will give a dance in the Gardner Hall tomorrow night.

From the Newport Daily News, January 18, 1907:

A draft of 250 apprentices from the Training Station will leave tonight (from Jamestown) via the Enterprise Line, for New York.

There have been several very low tides the past week and large quantities of clams were dug on the shores of the island.`

75 years ago From the Newport Daily News, January 21, 1932:

A smoker and social was held at the new engine house last evening in celebration of the forming of the Jamestown fire department, on Jan. 21, 1891, just 40 years ago. Many members of the department were present, and at 7:30 all sat down to a fine clam chowder supper, prepared by Walter Marley.

50 years ago From the Newport Daily News, January 15, 1957:

The Jamestown Protective Assn. while applauding the purpose of the recently issued brochure of the Rhode Island development Council on recreational opportunities on the shores of Narragansett Bay, has written to Gov. Roberts protesting the Council's support for the erection of an oil refinery on Jamestown.

The Jamestown Town Council, last night, accepted the recommendation of the Planning Board to proceed immediately to microfilm all the town's permanent records. Bids will be accepted at the next regular meeting. The estimated cost for microfilming would be around $1,211.00 and will take about 10 days. The cost of a film viewer will be about $175 and another $175 for film.

From the Newport Daily News, January 16, 1957:

Confronted by a solid gray wall of snow, the Jamestown Ferry made its 6 a.m. run to Newport and then stopped operating until noon, when the service was resumed.

From the Newport Daily News, January 17, 1957:

To aid the state and town snow removal program, Jamestown's police chief Frederick C. B. Smyth today warned those who use the highways for all night parking of automobiles.

From the Newport Daily News, January 19, 1957:

The Jamestown Bridge Commission last night, after stubborn opposition by one member had been expressed, endorsed the construction of a pier into Narragansett Bay for the refinery proposed by the Commerce Oil Refinery Corp. . . . The annual report for the fiscal year ending Nov. 30, 1956, as prepared by Ernst and Ernst, auditors of Providence, revealed an all time high of 427,209 crossings. This was 22,763 more than in 1955. The average toll paid was 56 cents.

25 years ago From the Newport Daily News, January 15, 1982:

The Jamestown School Committee cut almost $200,000 Thursday night from a proposed 1982-83 school budget. . . . The new proposed budget will be $1,845,927 with $449,532 coming from anticipated state and federal revenues and $1,396,395 coming from local support.

The Jamestown Chapter of the Red Cross made plans this week to take part in a "mock hurricane" as part of the state's Red Cross program.

From the Newport Daily News, January 18, 1982:

St. Matthew's Church is looking for bell chimers in an effort to keep a tradition alive. The church has never turned to automation, but has relied on volunteers to play the chimes by hand each night.

From the Newport Daily News, January 20, 1982:

The Town Council Monday tentatively agreed to buy the Winthrop Wilson property next to the Town Hall for $31,800. Town Administrator Robert W. Sutton Jr. said the purchase hinges on the townspeople approving it at the financial town meeting March 1. Sutton said the town is mostly interested in the land (5,000 square feet), in case of future expansion of Town Hall.

Toll revenues for both the Newport and Mount Hope Bridges for the six months that ended last Dec. 31, were 7.5 percent more than the same six-month period in 1980. The gain was $219,325, according to an interim report of the state Turnpike and Bridge Authority. . . . During the last six months of last year, 4,090,090 vehicles crossed the bridges compared to 3,932,186 during the corresponding period in 1980.

15 years ago From the Jamestown Press, January 16, 1992:

Town Administrator Robert W. Sutton formally resigned from the post he has held for 17 years at Monday's Town Council meeting.

Jamestown is again looking for a person to take on the duties of harbormaster, a position that has been filled and vacated twice since it was created in the spring of 1990.

(photo caption) Two bulldozers clean up the rubble of the state highway garage Thursday, all that was left of the building which was razed Wednesday to make way for a village parking lot. The town must remove a buried fuel tank from the site before the lot is completed.

10 years ago From the Jamestown Press, January 16, 1997:

On Friday, Jan. 17, at 2:30 p.m., the 17 year reign of Superintendent/Prinicpal Phyllis C. Schmidt will come to an official end as the much-loved Schmidt retires from the Jamestown school system.

(photo caption) SNOW FUN - - Cross-country skiing was possible Sunday after a snowstorm dumped 3 to 5 inches on the island. From left to right are Gale Marks, Bruce Brakenhoff and Noel Brakenhoff.

The proposed 1997-98 town government budget Town Council members began reviewing last Saturday will not raise the property tax rate. Town Administrator Frances Shocket told the council that wile the total $4,753,298 spending package was up about 1.5 percent over last year's, an increase in general revenue made up the difference.

Return to top