2007-03-29 / Island History

This week in Island history

Week of March 29
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 came from the collection of the Newport Historical Society.

100 years ago From the Newport Daily News, March 28, 1907

The fishermen are setting their traps in the west bay, to be in readiness for the first run of scup next month.

The farmers on the island have commenced their early plowing for potatoes and some have already planted their first peas.

From the Newport Daily News, April 1, 1907

Much speculation is rife as to the final outcome of the bids recently submitted to the quartermaster at Fort Greble for ferry service between this place, Saunderstown and Dutch Island. Two bids were submitted, one by the Jamestown & Newport Ferry Company and the other by Captain Stillman Saunders. These were opened last week at the fort and forwarded to Washington for the final decision. The bids rendered were $30 per day by the Ferry company for a year-round ferry service between Jamestown, Saunderstown, Dutch Island and Newport, and $25 by Saunders for the same service.

75 years ago From the Newport Daily News, March 30, 1932

Jamestown voters are looking forward to two events of particular interest within the next two weeks. April 6 the annual election will take place, and as each party has a full ticket in the field and is campaigning vigorously, a large vote is expected. April 9 the annual financial town meeting will be held.

From the Newport Daily News, March 31, 1932

(At the town council meeting), it was voted that the town treasurer be instructed to hire the sum of $9,000 for a period of six months, and the sum be used to pay the current expenses of the town.

(At the meeting of the school committee it was) voted to purchase a set of pictures advertised by the National Geographic society. It is the desire of the school board that teachers desiring to be reelected, shall file a letter to that effect before the next regular meeting of the board.

50 years ago From the Newport Daily News, March 28, 1957

As the Navy in Washington was restating its grave concern over the proposed Jamestown oil refinery, Jamestowners were told last night that the target date for construction to start is May 1.

From the Newport Daily News, March 29, 1957

April 3-6 has been designated as Clean Up Week in Jamestown by the Town Council. (A schedule is given as to when town trucks would pick up rubbish if left on the sidewalk.)

25 years ago From the Newport Daily News, March 26, 1982

Some people collect fine china, silver, handsome furniture and other fine collectibles. But one Jamestown man's collectible is the first oil burning furnace ever installed on the island in 1925. He is Alfred Vieira. Dr. Henry C. Ecroyd, the town's only doctor in that era, heard of an oil burning furnace and decided that was for him. Often out on emergencies late at night, he would come home to a freezing, cold house. He was faced with building a new coal fire in his furnace - no job for a tired doctor! The doctor contacted the late Arthur S. Clarke Sr., owner of a local plumbing and heating business. But the problem was, nobody on the island knew how to install this "newfangled" furnace. So Clarke went to Philadelphia to study for six days at the Sword and Kimber Co., manufacturers of the oil burner, to learn about this unfamiliar type furnace. According to Frank E. Hull, who years later purchased the business, Clarke went to Providence for a day to learn how to install this furnace. He recalled fuel in 1925 was seven cents a gallon.

15 years ago From the Jamestown Press, March 26, 1992

The Town Council Monday night voted unanimously to appoint Sharon J. McNamee, a former member of the U.S. Coast Guard, Jamestown's new harbormaster.

A Narragansett Avenue landmark will soon receive a much needed facelift. The old Baker Pharmacy building at 19 Narragansett Ave., which has been vacant for nearly five years, has been purchased.

10 years ago From the Jamestown Press, March 28, 1997

Golf course operator Joseph Mistowski will now be paying the town more than $80,000 a year.

The Town Council Monday voted unanimously to enter into a new three-year lease with Mistowski, who has operated the links since the town bought the course in 1986.

Dr. Frances Gallo, in her superintendent's report, gave a brief outline of a new strategic plan that will affect the education of every child in town. Gallo said the plan has been worked on a cooperatively by herself along with input from all faculty members. The plan will be a "dynamic and constantly moving form" that will be "value based" and strives toward "continuous improvement."

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