ProJo: Neighborhood of the Week: Portsmouth's Island Park grew from cottage colony to close community

Posted: Jun 27, 2015 at 11:00 PM

PORTSMOUTH, R.I. — Island Park, once the site of an amusement park, today is a close-knit community on a peninsula in northeast Portsmouth, a short distance across the water from Tiverton.

The Stone Bridge, which once linked Island Park and Tiverton, was destroyed by Hurricane Carol in 1954. Two years later, the Sakonnet River Bridge was built nearby.

In June 1898, an electric trolley started operating between Fall River and Newport, “crossing the old Stone Bridge and running along East Main Road,” according to a report by the Rhode Island Historical Preservation & Heritage Commission.

“Soon after it began operating, an amusement park and summer colony started at Island Park, near the Stone Bridge.” By the 1920s, this amusement park, home of “The Bullet — the second largest roller coaster in New England — attracted thousands of funseekers,” the report added. In its heydey, the park also had rental boats, a dance hall featuring big bands and tea rooms.

To view the complete article, visit Providence Journal

Courtesy of Providence Journal

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