2017-05-04 / Island History


Lawn School was evacuated after a bomb threat was received, The Jamestown Press reported May 4, 2000.

Although Police Chief Tom Tighe did not detail the threat to avoid “copycat crimes,” students were escorted from the building at 1:30 p.m. The state police, U.S. Navy and fire marshal responded to the warning. Two bomb-sniffing dogs found nothing during the search.

Tighe was “completely confident” the building was safe for students to return to class the following day. Most bomb threats, he said, are hoaxes.

Despite his confidence, Tighe is taking extra precautions because of recent violence in schools across the nation. Among those safeguards, a custodian will spend nights in the building.

100 years ago — May 7, 1917

(Newport Daily News)

The town council passed an ordinance prohibiting homeowners from connecting to the sewer system without applying for a permit from the town clerk. Violators will be fined between $10 and $20.

75 years ago — May 8, 1942

(Newport Mercury)

The boatmen’s union agreed on a 13.3 percent raise for crew working with the Jamestown- Newport Ferry Company.

According to union head Timothy McGrath, maintenance mechanics advocated for a quarter increase to $1 an hour, but ultimately agreed to an hourly rate of 85 cents.

50 years ago — May 4, 1967

(Newport Daily News)

Town Republicans swept Democrats out of office for the first time since 1956.

An entire GOP slate was elected to the council, led by Arthur S. Clarke Jr. Running for the council’s second seat, he defeated Joseph Tiexiera in a landslide, 727-268. For the chairman’s seat, Republican Andrew M. Brown Jr. ousted incumbent Democrat Albert Lyons by more than 200 votes. Also winning were William Sheehan, Paul Russo and Robert Lucas.

25 years ago — May 7, 1992

(The Jamestown Press)

Firefighters responded to Buloid Avenue after a bulldozer unearthed barrels of toxic waste.

According to the cleanup crew, four drums were found, including one with fluorescein and another with gasoline. The other two barrels were crushed and empty.

Fluorescein is a green dye carried by German airmen during World War II. When Axis pilots were shot down, they would parachute into the sea and release the dye into the water, producing a vivid marking that could be seen over long distances.

Exposure to the chemical can cause an allergic reaction similar to poison ivy.

10 years ago — May 10, 2007

(The Jamestown Press)

Police officers butted heads with a group of fishermen casting lines from the woodpile pier at East Ferry.

Although the public has the right to fish from the pier, Sgt. Angela Deneault said, boaters have reported fishermen boarding boats, fishing from private docks and leaving litter behind. “We were under orders to make sure none of that was happening,” Deneault said.

When police arrived, however, the fishermen complained they were being harassed. A loud argument ensued between the two sides.

“It’s just not a good mix,” Lt. Bill Donovan said.

Return to top