Legendary Locals of Jamestown by Rosemary Enright & Sue Maden, 2010 | State Archives Catalog
Scope and Contents: When Caleb Carr, one of the 101 men who purchased Conanicut and Dutch Islands in 1657, petitioned the General Assembly to incorporate Jamestown in 1678, the town had 150 inhabitants. The community thrived until the American Revolution, when the British occupation drove away many people. Nicholas Carr and John Eldred both remained, rebelling in their own ways. The town recovered slowly, and its character changed with modernized modes of transportation. Steam ferries, introduced in 1873, ushered in an era of resort hotels, affluent summer visitors, and a service economy. The West Passage Bridge in 1940 brought permanent residents with off-island occupations and interests. The East Passage Bridge (1969) and the replacement West Passage bridge (1992) created a suburban atmosphere enlivened by a continuing influx of summer vacationers. Most newcomers revel in the islands beauty and are intent on keeping Jamestown the peaceful haven that attracted them.