2016-08-11 / Island History

Island History

The Conanicut Island Land Trust acquires Godena Farm on North Main Road for $375,000, reported The Jamestown Press Aug. 6, 2009.

The purchase, paid for entirely by the trust, “is an enormously significant acquisition,” said Quentin Anthony, the trust’s president. “It’s a property with wonderful access, it’s extraordinarily beautiful, and it’s large enough to accommodate multiple uses.”

The property includes 23 acres on the east side of North Main Road overlooking Narragansett Bay, along with 2.5 acres on the west side of North Main Road that includes a house, a barn and a garage. The structures were included in the acquisition.

While the trust has yet to determine its long-range plans for the property, its immediate plans included maintaining the fields, removing rusty barbed wire fencing, making the buildings and water tight and removing invasive species.

100 years ago — Aug. 12, 1916 (Newport Daily News)

The first airplane ever to land on Jamestown set down on the water and ran up on the beach just south of Shoreby Hill. The plane attracted numerous onlookers, who gathered to see the new machine. The two men aboard visited with friends for about 30 minutes and then left.

75 years ago — Aug. 12, 1941 (Newport Daily News)

The town agreed to negotiate with the state to widen Eldred Avenue, the easterly approach to the Jamestown-Saunderstown bridge.

50 years ago — Aug. 9, 1966 (Newport Daily News)

The Jamestown Town Council approved hiring three men at $1.75/hour to direct traffic at East Ferry. The men will work from noon to evenings (to evenings?) Fridays through Mondays to ease congestion caused by ferry traffic blocking Conanicus Avenue. Since the state had written the town asking for help, the council voted to send the bill for this expense to the state. Gov. John Chaffee responded the next day by saying the state will not pay for the three men.

“What kind of state would we have if any town could run up any bills it wants and just send them to us for payment,” Chaffee said.

25 years ago — Aug. 8, 1991 (The Jamestown Press)

The Jamestown Town Council is considering paying $40,000 for an archaeological survey needed to build a senior center. The council said it won’t make a final decision until the group behind the project explores “all the various avenues of funding.”

The study commission wants a building on the Pemberton Avenue lot the town leases from the Holy Ghost Society for $1 annually. Since the property may be on a prehistoric Indian village, no construction can begin until an archaeological survey determines if it is home to any Indian burial remains.

10 years ago — Aug. 17, 2006 (The Jamestown Press)

Town Administrator Bruce Keiser told the Jamestown Town Council three companies submitted bids for the new town hall on Narragansett Avenue. All three bids exceeded the $3 million approved by residents for the project. Pezzucco Construction, of Providence, was the lowest bidder.

“I believe that we can negotiate and rethink a few items in the bid to bring it down to a workable figure,” Keiser said. He advised the council to look for private fundraisers. “The community has always been generous in the past.”

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