2007-08-09 / Island History

This week in Island history

Week of August 9
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, August 5, 1907

The trial of the submarines over the mile course off the east shore attracts much attention from the numerous automobile parties, which cross the ferries between Newport and the island.

From the Newport Daily News, August 10, 1907

Battleships Kentucky and Illinois came into the bay early this morning and anchored in the east harbor, close inshore, just off the ferry.

Bids were opened … for the construction of a water supply for Fort Greble (on Dutch Island) and fencing. The project consists in conveying water from several springs on the land in Saunderstown side into a 400,000 gallon reservoir of reenforced concrete and piping it across Narragansett Bay into a reservoir at Fort Greble through land and submarine pipes. Michael A. McCormick was the only bidder on the project, his bid aggragating $78,450. He is also the lowest bidder on fencing the reservation, at $770.

75 years ago From the Newport Daily News, August 5, 1932

Among the attractions at the Mackerel Cove beach at present are the classes of swimmers with Henry Armbrust as instructor and many are taking lessons in the art.

The members of the Cole Street Baptist Church held a picnic at Beavertail Thursday evening, when supper was served on the rocks, after which a community sing was held.

From the Newport Daily News, August 9, 1932

Owing to the absence of the fleet, the number present (at the Admirals' Annual Tea Party) was not as large as in previous years, but those who were there enjoyed the opportunity of talking over the affairs of the day. … This party was started by Admiral George C. Remy eight years ago and has been continued every summer since then.

From the Newport Daily News, August 10, 1932

Henry Lathan is suffering with a broken wrist, which he sustained while fishing on the rocks at beavertail. Dr. Sweet, of Newport, who was at his camp at Beavertail at the time, gave the needed aid.

From the Newport Daily News, August 11, 1932

The Park committee (of the Fire department) … was appointed on moving the canon from the Thomas H. Clarke school yard to the fire department park.

50 years ago From the Newport Daily News, August 7, 1957

Jamestown is all ready for a gala reception in honor of the purchase of Conanicut Island from the Indians 300 years ago. An eight day festival of pageants and parades, dinners and barbecues and concerts, has been arranged to help celebrate the island's 300th birthday. Banners carrying the greeting, "Hi Neighbor," and a welcome to the island (sign), have been hung at both entrances to the island and along the principal business streets.

From the Newport Daily News, August 9, 1957

Commerce Oil Refining Corp. has completed the purchase of all the land on which it had options on the approximate 725 acre tract where it plans a $71,000,000 refinery in

Jamestown according to deeds filed for record in the town clerk's office. The total land cost $502,500. The last of the options, the Carr homestead property on the north side of Carr's Lane, was picked up yesterday afternoon. The exact acreage was not spelled out in the deed.

Jamestown opens its 300th celebration of the purchase of Conanicut Island from the Indians tomorrow. … In addition to a tennis tournament, ferry rides in the afternoon and evening and dancing, there will be a program of water sports at the east ferry landing.

25 years ago From the Newport Daily News, August 7, 1982

The long weekend has started out as a dry one for some residents living in Beavertail. … Some of the residents have been without water periodically since Memorial Day weekend. … The Town Council has discussed replacing the water line in the area. It would cost about $360,000.

From the Newport Daily News, August 11, 1982

The board of directors of Jamestown Theatre, faced with foreclosure notices from the banks, may have to sell the building to try to recoup some of the initial investment.

15 years ago From the Jamestown Press, August 6, 1992

An official groundbreaking ceremony last Friday kicked off construction of the Jamestown Philomenian Library's $1.4 million addition and renovation.

School officials last week did not know how they were going to run a school department faced with nearly a $58,000 loss in state aid and projections of higher operating costs.

Gov. Bruce Sundlun recently signed into law a bill that officially names the (Newport) bridge after 73- year old (Claiborne) Pell, a Newport resident who has served in the U.S. Senate since 1960, and has also had the Pell Grants in education named after him.

10 years ago From the Jamestown Press, August 7, 1997

Narragansett Avenue may receive a $50,000 makeover as part of a $500,000 grant the town applied for in 1993 for streetscape improvements.

The 23rd annual Conanicut Island Art Association show last weekend featured the works of 110 artists, all from Jamestown.

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