2012-10-18 / Island History

This Week In Island History

Week of October 18
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, October 18, 1912
The members of the Royal Arcanum, with their families,
Tuesday had an outing with a clambake in Caswell’s grove.
Although late in the season, the weather conditions were
one of the finest for the affair.
One more case of diphtheria has been discovered. (The
case is directly traceable to the first ones, the child being a

playmate of those children.)
The heap of charred lumber has been removed from the
north end of the Thorndike ruins and the rubbish is being
carted and dumped over the bank of the shore. One small
place near the south end of the ruins was still throwing off
considerable smoke Friday. The fire started the Saturday before. Mrs. Caswell has a force of men clearing away the brush
and filling in the swamp hole just north of Shoreby Hill
known as Belcher’s pond.
The first corn-husking machine for use on the island has
been bought and set up by Messrs. Caswell and Peckham.
75 years ago
From the Newport Daily News, October 16, 1937
The 70th anniversary of the Central Baptist Church will
be celebrated Sunday.
A new lighting system is being installed in the Thomas H.
Clarke School.

From the Newport Daily News,
October 21, 1937
At a special meeting of the
Town Council, Ross Harrison presented a diagram suggesting improvements on the east waterfront,
and proposed that the government
appropriate money for building a
dock on the property of Harry Horgan, thus relieving the congestion
of ferry traffic.
The dancing classes, held under the supervision of the Parent-
Teachers Association, and directed
by Miss Thelma Duffee as instructor, met for the first time this season at the Carr School with 24 pupils in attendance.
50 years ago
From the Newport Daily News,
October 20, 1962
The Jamestown Bridge Commission last night adopted its 1963
budget totaling $156,587. This,
an increase of $14,870 over this
year’s budget, includes an increase
of $6,535 for wages; $60, lights;
insurance, $1,075; Social Security, $200; and paint, grease and
repairs, $7,000. The commission
will negotiate with W. Leon Watson to obtain rights to his historical map of Jamestown, which will
be used for advertising purposes.
25 years ago
From the Newport Daily News,
October 15, 1987
Town voters – well, at least 64
town voters – unanimously approved the purchase of 24 acres of
the Hodgkiss Farm at a special fi-
nancial town meeting Wednesday
night. (The cost was $87,000.)
From the Newport Daily News,
October 20, 1987
Jamestown demands wetlands
protection. Tempers flared during a Town Council work session
Monday after a bitter and sometimes loud discussion about wetlands mitigation plans for the new
bridge-connector road.
15 years ago
From the Jamestown Press,
October 16, 1997
The town-owned golf course has
brought in $116,700 of income so
far, and town officials anticipate
another $10,000 in revenue by the
end of the season.
Jamestowners pedaled into their
22nd annual Rotary Club aroundthe island bicycle race Monday, as
over 180 participants donned their
helmets to ride the 18-mile course.
10 years ago
From the Jamestown Press,
October 17, 2002
Location for a new highway
barn – this time at Fort Wetherill
– dominated about half of the
four-hour Town Council meeting
Tuesday, and about 30 residents,
mostly opposed to that location,
The only flaw in the around-theisland bike race on Columbus Day
was the strong winds blowing to
the north. This year’s race was the
biggest around-the-island race on
Jamestown to date. Of the record
485 racers, close to 100 were local. To the applause and cheers of
about two dozen preteens, as well
as others, the Town Council Tuesday approved a plan for the skateboard park the skaters helped to
design and mostly fund.

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