2013-04-11 / Island History

This Week In Island History

Week of April 11
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 11, 1913

Nearly every proposition submitted to the voters during the afternoon session of the Financial Town Meeting Saturday was carried. The baseball team received an appropriation of $150. An appropriation of $5,500 was made for an addition to the schoolhouse. A vote was passed limiting the bidding for the addition to local contractors. The Town Hall is to be equipped with electric lights and water installed.

Steamer Panther was in Monday with a cargo of fertilizer for local farmers. She is the dismantled auxiliary schooner yacht of the same name and, although having crossed the ocean several times and spending one winter frozen in the ice in Greenland, is still staunch and seaworthy.

75 years ago

From the Newport Daily News, April 11, 1938

The Jamestown taxpayers at the annual Financial Town Meeting Saturday afternoon, by a vote of 155-115, approved the purchase from Harry R. Horgan of the property next to the East Ferry landing for $17,500, defeated three other special propositions totaling $4,000 on ballot votes, and adopted a budget of $134,709.09. This ensures the tax rate remaining at $20 a thousand. The special propositions defeated were $800 to purchase prizes for the speedboat regatta, 88-114; $1,200 for the Pemberton Avenue sewer, 84-117; and $2,000 for developing a playground on the Sherman farm, 97-108. At the Horgan site, the town plans to remove the buildings and develop the site, with WPA assistance, as a parking space and yacht basin, thus beautifying the town square and ferry landing area. Appointment of a five-man town planning board was authorized.

50 years ago

From the Newport Daily News, April 9, 1963

Victualer licenses were renewed by the Town Council for 1963 and 1964 for Hunt’s Drug Store, Pitchers Inc., Man- ny’s Tavern, The Islander, Frances’ Diner, Carol’s Grill, Narragansett CafĂ©, and Surf Restaurant.

From the Newport Daily News,

April 11, 1963

The Jamestown Town Council last night authorized a budget totaling $522,840, which it recommended for adoption at the annual financial town meeting on May 6. The amount is $38,338 higher than the $484,502 figure approved by voters last year. The school budget, $23,131 over last year, accounts for most of the total budget increase. This is due principally, it was explained, to a larger number of pupils graduating from Jamestown School, whose high school tuition the town has to pay.

From the Newport Daily News,

April 13, 1963

Memorial Post, Veterans of Foreign Wars, in Jamestown, will conduct a Life-a-Bike safety campaign next week.

25 years ago

From the Newport Daily News,

April 14, 1988

The R.I. Parks Association is seeking a lighthouse keeper’s uniform for its soon-to-open maritime museum at Beavertail Lighthouse. Beavertail, along with other areas once owned by the Navy, is part of the state Department of Environmental Management’s Bay Islands State Park. Maintained by the Coast Guard, the lighthouse is one of nine still active in Rhode Island.

15 years ago

From the Jamestown Press,

April 9, 1998

Schools Superintendent Frances Gallo is seeking to lengthen the school year by seven days to reduce the amount of time that teachers have to be away from the classroom for professional development pursuits.

The Town Council is scheduled to hold a public hearing next Monday on an ordinance amendment that would increase the cost of all construction permits. Based on the existing cubic-foot fee structure, a building permit for an average house with 2,000 square feet of floor space would cost about $150. With the proposed change, a charge of 30 cents per square foot, a permit for the same house would cost about $600.

10 years ago

From the Jamestown Press,

April 10, 2003

Three members of the Town Council last Thursday spent an hour reviewing a draft of rules it might adopt to regulate liquor licenses. The ordinance would provide for entertainment permits, but the amount of noise that would be permitted would be covered by a noise ordinance yet to be written.

The Plum Beach Lighthouse, the antiquated and dilapidated lighthouse just to the north of the Jamestown Bridge, may be getting a facelift this summer. The state Department of Transportation opened bids yesterday to see which contractor would be awarded the highway enhancement project that should leave the lighthouse cleaned and restored by this December.

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