2012-05-10 / Island History

This Week In Island History

Week of May 10
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 10, 1912

St. Matthew’s Church is receiving a fresh coat of paint. Mr. Alexander Tennant has the contract for the work.

J.C. Terry’s lighter and crew are at work making improvements to the ferry slip at the West Ferry.

The rain of the past two days has still further delayed the spring’s work, not only on the farms but also about the summer cottages. The farmers are now far behind with their planting, that which is planted does not grow, and the seeds may rot before they start if cold rainy weather continues.

75 years ago

From the Newport Daily News, May 7, 1937

The Fire Department at its annual meeting voted to rescind from the vote of the last meeting, for the purchase of the chemical truck, because of the firm’s failure to furnish a Barton pump as specified. The janitor, Walter Marley, requested that two new flags be purchased.

50 years ago From the Newport Daily News,

May 8, 1962

Jamestown’s current tax rate of $18.10 will remain unchanged town officials indicated today following the adoption of a $484,502.88 budget at the annual Financial Town Meeting last night at the recreation center. Police Chief Smyth requested an increase of $625 in the town buildings item for detention facilities. Smyth said that the town had no provisions for detaining prisoners and said that much time is spent in transporting them to Wickford. The motion was defeated. From the Newport Daily News,

May 11, 1962

Governor Nolte assured Newport Councilman Harold C. Petropolous and City Manager George A. Bisson in a conference at the State House yesterday that he will review the entire situation of the Jamestown ferry rates within a month or six weeks. Travelers on the ferry yesterday said that the new rates, which require a passenger fare for each occupant of a car, delayed the ferry seven minutes or more on some trips.

25 years ago From the Newport Daily News,

May 10, 1987

If Monday dawns bright and sunny, the age of cable television might dawn on Jamestown as well. From the Newport Daily News,

May 11, 1987

Moments after finishing the round the world BOC Challenge last Saturday afternoon as the Class II winner (50-footers and under), Mike Plant of Jamestown slumped in mock fatigue onto the deck above the red hull. Mock indeed. Plant had just ended 28 days, 1 hour, 10 minutes and 22 seconds at sea since beginning the 5,300-mile leg from Rio de Janeiro to Newport. The four-leg, around-the-world nautical marathon covered 27,000 miles in all. (He earned $15,000.) From the Newport Daily News,

May 12, 1987

The Town Council voted Monday night to draw up an ordinance that would freeze the number of liquor licenses in town.

The Town Council Monday night voted to appeal a wetlands permit approved by the state Department of Environmental Management for the cross-island connector road.

15 years ago

From the Jamestown Press,

May 8, 1997

In an apparent upset yesterday, three Republicans took control of the Town Council, sweeping out of office two incumbent Democrats. As yet to be tallied are 98 absentee ballots.

On Mother’s Day weekend, sisters Carol Anderson and Debbie Swistak of Jamestown Designs will celebrate 25 years of business in Jamestown with an open house at their Narragansett Avenue location.

10 years ago

From the Jamestown Press,

May 9, 2002

(Photo caption) Chris Powell is perched atop the Jamestown Fire Department aerial ladder as he removes an osprey nest from atop a light pole at the Lawn Avenue ball fields. Powell and crew installed a platform on top of the pole where they placed the nest. The ospreys returned to the nest with the hour.

Arthur Christman, the town’s fire chief for the past six years and a volunteer for 35 years, left his post last week by withdrawing his name from the department’s annual election of officers.

Bob Bryer is the town’s new fire chief. Elected May 2 at the department’s annual meeting, Bryer, who was a deputy chief, was elected in a landslide vote.

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