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Pawtuxet, Rhode Island -born house carpenter Joseph Horton built the fine home located at 65 Boston Neck Road in North Kingstown on land he purchased from the owner of the house just to the west, Thomas Peirce, in 1892. He moved in with his wife Laura, a member of the prominent and successful Baker family, and their two children Mary and William after living elsewhere in the village of Wickford for more than three decades.

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In most cases, the most noteworthy events associated with any of the myriad historic homes in Wickford occurred centuries ago. And, although it’s true that the fine home at 151 West Main St., our subject today, built more than 150 years ago, has a long association with the locally prominent Holloway family, it’s really not these ship and house wrights for whom this house is remembered.

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The word “guild” is ancient in its usage, and harkens back to a time in Europe and England when craftsmen would meet together in an intimate setting and share the particular secrets of their craft.  It’s no coincidence that Augusta Garloff Hazard chose this very specific word to describe the place that she created for the women of Peacedale as the 20th century dawned. 

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Here is another look at a quirky, perhaps even a bit insane, 130-year-old story about another prominent South County landmark and a Narragansett local celebrity, now resting eternal in Wakefield, who lost his grip on reality it would seem.

The headlines of Aug. 15, 1891 reflect the feeling of inevitability shared by just about everyone in South County.  “At Last! Capt. Kenyon in a new role.  He kills a man at Last.”

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One of the many things we do here in South County, better than the rest of RI if you ask me, is quirky! We are a quirky bunch, and our history is replete with quirky stories. Last week we examined the story behind Smith’s Castle, one of our iconic landmark locations, period of ownership by an underwear manufacturer. This week, lets check out the quirky tale of the candymen who saved Narragansett’s most popular viewscape.

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If a place stands the test of time for as long as Smith’s Castel has, you can bet that there’s bound to be an anomaly or two somewhere in its long record of ownership. With more than 325 years of history, Smith’s Castle’s anomaly certainly has to be the seven-year period during the 1940s in which it was owned by a Providence textile concern, the Vesta Underwear Company.

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The middle of the 1800s brought unprecedented growth to the small village of Lafayette.

Before long it had everything a community would need to be self-sufficient; a large mill and its supporting businesses to supply all with a place to work, general stores and shops of every kind, and schools to educate the children of the workers.

But, Lafayette had no church to call its own.

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No serious study of the history of our fair town would be complete without taking a hard look at one of the folks most responsible for preserving the most important artifacts of that history; the colonial era homes and structures which make North Kingstown the special place that it is. No one man has done more to preserve and document these buildings than Norman Isham. It only seems fitting, since Isham’s home and studio on Boston Neck Road have recently been restored themselves, that we look back on his life.

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Whether it be as a backdrop for the historic fishing vessel the “O.K.” or all on its own, the magnificent circa 1932 John P. Burdick House cuts quite a figure for itself there on the edge of Wickford Harbor, just east of the Hussey Bridge. An interesting home, constructed on land that has its own intriguing story, this is a house with a tale to tell.

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Most of my friends and relations seem to feel that I have a penchant for making some very obscure selections when it comes to reading materials. I can’t quite understand this; why, during this long holiday weekend I passed the time pouring over the details of this very interesting two-volume work entitled “Runaways, Deserters, & Notorious Villains” written by noted Providence historian and photo archivist Maureen Taylor.

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My backyard has an assortment of large and small holes scattered throughout the landscape, all excavated by animals of some sort, and I enjoy watching their occupants scamper from one hole to the next. Most are home to chipmunks, which can be seen during most of the year filling their cheeks with sunflower seeds spilled from the birdfeeders and dashing off to hide them under ground.