2012-02-02 / Island History

This Week In Island History

Compiled by Sue Maden

Week of February 2

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, Feb. 2, 1912

A schooner has been anchored in the west bay, short of a crew, the men having left owing to the hardships of the weather. A new crew arrived from Boston Thursday evening.

Large parties of young people are enjoying exceptional good skating on Clarke’s Pond daily.

A large party from the island attended the play in the new Newport Opera House Thursday evening, making the trip by launch.

75 years ago

From the Newport Daily News, Feb. 1, 1937

The President’s Birthday Ball, held at the Holy Ghost hall, Saturday evening, was a social and financial success, 100 couples attending. The hall was decorated in the national colors, and a large picture of President Roosevelt was flanked on one side with American flags. Bowen’s orchestra furnished music for dancing, a quartet of Hill Billies from Fall River entertained with instruments and vocal music. Manuel Morinho won the large birthday cake, adorned with 55 candles. Several dinner parties were held previous to the dance, and many had out-of-town friends as their guests.

From the Newport Daily News, Feb. 3, 1937

[At the Town Council meeting the council approved] an act to facilitate vehicular traffic between the eastern and western sections of the state by providing for the construction of a toll bridge over the west passage of Narragansett Bay, between Jamestown and North Kingstown.

It was voted to reopen the matter of the act authorizing the town of Jamestown to establish a permanent police force.

50 years ago

From the Newport Daily News, Feb. 1, 1962

Twenty-five Jamestown firemen began a course in radiation at the Jamestown Fire Station last night. (The course lasted seven weeks and was held weekly.)

From the Newport Daily News, Feb. 2, 1962

The Jamestown School Committee is faced with an $11,000 increase in its budget to meet the additional tuition costs for its 168 students who attend high schools in Newport and elsewhere. The town’s tuition costs for 1962- 63 will total $76,500, the committee estimated. Jamestown has 160 students attending Rogers High School, Thompson Junior High, De La Salle Academy and St. Catherine Academy; four in high schools elsewhere; and four special students for whom tuition is paid. The Rogers tuition costs $528 annually, Thompson Junior High $360 and both De La Salle and St. Catherine $350.

25 years ago

From the Newport Daily News, Feb. 3, 1987

Record dumpings of snow in Newport County through the end of January are making some local communities see red. Jamestown apparently can withstand one or two more storms before funds run out. (The $6,500 budget should last through Feb. 28.)

Town Council officials will act as “interveners” at the Feb. 9 pre-hearing conference on the wetland permit application for the new cross-island bridge-connector road.

From the Newport Daily News, Feb. 6, 1987

The chairman of the Planning Commission looked favorably Wednesday on preliminary plans to build an 11-house cluster-zone subdivision at the Keeler Farm.

15 years ago

From the Jamestown Press, Jan. 30, 1997

Unsafe levels of coliform bacteria have been fond in 18 of 122 well-water samples taken from homes on the island’s north end during a study by the town’s Groundwater Study Committee.

[The Parks and Recreation director] has been instructed to order materials to construct a town skating rink at the softball field on Lawn Avenue.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has started the first part of their fourphase plan to restore parts of Narragansett Bay that were hit by the World Prodigy oil spill. Part one of NOAA’s four-part plan is to create reefs for lobster habitat, and place them in Dutch Island Harbor.

The Town Council Monday formally approved a $10.6 million combined town government and school budget that will not increase the current tax rate of $14.42 per $1,000 of property valuation.

10 years ago

From the Jamestown Press,

Jan. 31, 2002

Some 16 employees of the state Department of Environmental Management’s Fish and Wildlife Division will soon move into the former military mine facility at Fort Wetherill.

Russian ship positions around Jamestown again were an issue at a Town Council meeting. The council was told Monday that a possible breach of naval security by the vessel in the bay’s East Passage, and air pollution from one vessel in the West Passage, are speeding the fleet’s departure. A third factor is that herring and mackerel that brought the Russian fleet here are heading south, and the Russian ships are expected to be gone before March.

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