2010-05-13 / Island History

This week in Island history

Week of May 13
Compiled by Sue Maden

The news of 10 and 15 years ago is from the Jamestown Press. The news of 100 years ago came from the collection of the Newport Historical Society.

100 years ago From the Newport Journal, May 14, 1910

Work on the tar macadam roadbed on Narragansett Avenue was begun Wednesday.

The Jamestown & Newport Ferry Company have signed an agreement with the New England Steamship Company for transportation of freight and passengers between Newport and Jamestown.

75 years ago From the Newport Daily News, May 11, 1935

The activities of the Board (of Trade) for the last year were discussed, and extra efforts of the members during the coming year were urged by the president, to keep the name of Jamestown before the traveling public. The information booth for the convenience of the summer visitors will be opened May 15, with Harry E. Locke in charge.

Mrs. Ferdinand Armbrust gave the annual report of the Production committee (of the Red Cross) as follows: Six knitted woolen helmets, national quota; 12 ice bag covers, 24 pneumonia jackets, five pairs knitted mittens, nine pairs knitted beanies; 2 pairs wool socks, one large coat sweater, one sleeveless sweater, 2 knitted wool afghans, 12 Beacon blanket bed jackets, one tufted bed quilt; 24 hospital bibs.

50 years ago From the Newport Daily News, May 9, 1960

Jamestown taxpayers last night approved a budget of $432,813, including a school department budget of $196,266. …No increase to the town’s $16.70 per $1,000 tax rate is anticipated.

25 years ago

From the Newport Daily News, May 10, 1985

The Town Council unanimously approved Thursday a change in zoning to allow construction of 35 luxury condominiums at the site of the Bay View Hotel.

Newport Bridge traffic increased 7.8 percent in April over the same month in 1984. (It was reported that 374,769 vehicles went through the tollbooths in April of this year.)

From the Newport Daily News, May 14, 1985

The Town Council Monday voted to change its longterm funding plans for the waste transfer station to get a better interest rate.

From the Newport Daily News, May 15, 1985

Traffic tie-ups as a result of deck repairs on the Jamestown Bridge may be a thing of the past, come next Monday morning. (Work crews were pushing for a Saturday completion date.)

15 years ago From the Jamestown Press, May 11, 1995

Town officials hope to get $1.7 million in federal grant money to put forward revitalizing East Ferry and increasing the municipal water supply. Town Planner George Meservey proposed applying for the funds through the state’s Overall Economic Development Program, and the Town Council Monday night approved Meservey’s application.

The volunteer fire department plans to raffle off its aging Engine 3 to help pay for two newer trucks it recently bought for $214,000, and the Town Council has endorsed the idea.

Local Democratic candidates — who have been off and on the upcoming ballot twice— will now appear first on the ballot when new electronic voting machines are used in the June 7 election of town officials.

10 years ago From the Jamestown Press, May 11, 2000

The Town Council voted unanimously Monday to send enabling legislation to its representatives in the state Gen- eral Assembly that, if approved, would permit the town to levy additional sewer service charges to pay the principal and interest due on bonds it has issued.

It costs more to buy a home in Jamestown than in any other Rhode Island community. An article in Tuesday’s Providence Journal about the statewide building boom puts Jamestown at the top of the list. (Island homes go for an average of $300,000. This is more than twice the state median home price of $127,900.)

Plans are officially underway by the American Lighthouse Foundation for the restoration of the Dutch Island Lighthouse. The foundation last month obtained a lease on the lighthouse from the U.S. Coast Guard.

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