2012-04-19 / Island History

This Week In Island History

Week of April 19
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, April 19, 1912

Bids for the Fort Greble ferry service have been opened at the quartermaster’s office. There was only one bidder, the Jamestown & Newport Ferry Company, making separate bids for the east and west bay services, and another for the complete service. The matter has been referred to headquarters, with recommendations for the complete service.

The local lobstermen have as yet only a few pots overboard, the weather since the opening of the season having been foggy most of the time.

Work on the new casino is nearly completed. The grounds are yet to be graded.

Mr. William H. Jones, steward of the Jamestown Club, has returned for the summer to fill his position for the twenty third season.

The same parties who set out several thousand peach trees on the Constant Smith farm near Conanicut Park have received a shipment of 1,000 more trees, which will be put out as soon as the weather becomes favorable.

75 years ago From the Newport Daily News,

April 17, 1937

At the Town Council meeting it was voted that the wages of town officers be as follows for the ensuing year: chief of police, $125 per month; second police, $100 per month; salary of town constable, $25 per year; health officer, $5 per month; pound keeper, $5 per year; inspector of buildings, $5 per year; harbormaster, $5 per year; salary of superintendent of WPA, $94 per month; truck driver’s salary, $121 per month; general helper, $94.50 per month; day labor, 50 cents per hour; wages of a double team (of horses) and man, $8 per day, single man and team, $6 per day. From the Newport Daily News,

April 19, 1937

The first blackfish of the season were caught Sunday morning at Beavertail by Arthur S. Clarke. This is two weeks earlier than blackfish were caught last year. From the Newport Daily News,

April 21, 1937

Supporters of the proposed bridge between Jamestown and Saunderstown are now awaiting concurrent action in the (State) House following passage by the Senate, 27-13, Tuesday evening of the act creating a state commission with authorization to issue bonds for the construction of the bridge.

50 years ago From the Newport Daily News,

April 16, 1962

The Jamestown School Committee voted Saturday to consider establishment of a summer school in the town. The resignation of Anna F. Caswell, school bus driver for 17 years, was accepted. A three-year contract will be signed with the United Truck and Bus Company for a 66-passenger school bus to replace the present 58-passenger bus, at no increase in cost. From the Newport Daily News,

April 18, 1962

Reduction of Jamestown Ferry tolls resulted in additional deficits of $117,000 the past two years and was the reason for the recent decision for a passenger toll increase to become effective May 10.

25 years ago From the Newport Daily News,

April 14, 1987

Jamestown golfers got good news Monday night but more good news is needed from Mother Nature this week if golfers are to tee off Saturday at the country club. (Weather interfered with installing a sewer line and more rain is possible.)

The Town Council Monday night refused to step into ongoing leasing negotiations between the Waterfront Authority and the operators of the Dutch Harbor Shipyard. The new owners, who bought the shipyard from Charles E. Cabral in August 1985, insist that the $10,000 a year lease, together with maintenance costs, would exceed their yearly revenue. From the Newport Daily News,

April 16, 1987

AT&T customers in Jamestown (those with phone numbers beginning with 423) will soon have to dial “00” to reach an AT&T operator (for help with long distance calls) instead of “0,” AT&T announced today. From the Newport Daily News,

April 17, 1987

An amendment to the new highway bill passed by Congress earlier this month will require that the new Jamestown Bridge’s railing provide motorists with an unobstructed view of Narragansett Bay.

15 years ago

From the Jamestown Press,

April 17, 1997

A public work session on possible uses for the second floor of the town-owned country club will be held by the Town Council after next month’s election of town offi cials.

No sparks flew at last week’s debate between the 18 candidates who will be vying for Town Council, School Committee and town moderator positions in the May 7 election. About 80 residents turned out for the event. Clearly the issue most on people’s minds was how to solve the island’s water problems, both in the municipal water district and in the Jamestown Shores, where homeowners depend on private wells and septic systems that are close together.

10 years ago

From the Jamestown Press,

April 18, 2002

Divided once again on where to put a public works facility, or socalled highway barn complex, the Town Council Tuesday asked for more information, especially on how to split the facility between the old town landfill site, including Lot 47, on the island’s north end, and the sewer treatment plant at Taylor Point.

Town Council members sitting as the board of water and sewer commissioners Tuesday considered several actions involving the town water supply. (This included a loosening of rules for water connections despite reservations by town officials.)

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