The Town Crier: Little Compton celebrates 350 years

By The Town Crier
Posted 6/18/24

Editor’s note: Over the coming months, the Sakonnet Times will be running regular dispatches from the “The Town Crier” — the voice of the towns’ 350th anniversary …

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The Town Crier: Little Compton celebrates 350 years


Editor’s note: Over the coming months, the Sakonnet Times will be running regular dispatches from the “The Town Crier” — the voice of the towns’ 350th anniversary committee — on all things Little Compton as the town gets ready to celebrate its big birthday next summer. Stay tuned for news about the coming celebration, as well as historical stories and tidbits from the town’s recent and not-so-recent past. Here’s the first dispatch:

With the 350th anniversary of the founding of Little Compton rapidly approaching, the Little Compton Town Council has appointed the following to help plan, organize and implement the celebration of Little Compton’s 350th birthday in 2025: George Goulart (chairman), Philip Warren (vice-chairman), Caroline Wordell (secretary), Herbert Case (treasurer), William Boudreau, Cheryl Cady, Heather Cook, Mikel Folcarelli, Edi Marion, Melissa McCarthy, Joyce Moson, Carolyn Montgomery, Barbara Passmore, Roger Roussell, Beth Ryan, and Catherine Snell.

This committee has morphed into a dozen or more sub-committees to plan various events such as a parade, family day, firemen’s muster, farmer’s day, Portuguese feast, clambake, sunset music series, fishing tournament, penguin plunge, Little Compton soapbox derby, and much, much more. The celebration will commence with the opening of the time capsule placed on Pike’s Peak during the Tricentennial 50 years ago, and slated to be opened on August 9, 2025, 50 years to the date it was buried! By the way, LC350 has also been appointed by the town council to plan Little Compton’s Semiquincentennial celebration in 2026, to honor the 250th anniversary of the signing of the Declaration of Independence.

Remember 1975?

The last time the town celebrated a big birthday was 1975, when Little Compton pulled out the stops for its 300th anniversary. Current committee members Caroline Wordell and Carolyn Montgomery are the only two current committee members to have participated in planning that year’s birthday party as well. More about that effort:

In November of 1972 a meeting was held in the school gym to discuss Little Compton’s upcoming birthday, still three years off at the time. Al Kliberg from the State of Rhode Island Historical Society was present to speak to the group. It was voted to request the town council appoint a steering committee, but this was by no means a unanimous vote. There were those concerned about inviting “riff-raff” into our town, and there was much discussion. One local who was known to speak his mind asked why we didn’t put a tollbooth on on Windmill Hill! Another man suggested an airport on Warren’s Point, and he was only partially joking!

The council ultimately appointed Janice Clark, Katherine McMahon, Helen Morris, Helen Hoban, Frances Gracia, Jane Cabot, Carolyn Montgomery, Ida Smith, Caroline Wordell, Ted Bowen, Tony Marion, Dick Rogers, Warren Nickerson, Larry Lanpher, Phil Almy, Abe Quick, and Carlton Brownell. Helen Hoban, Helen Morris and Phil Almy resigned, and Susan Whitin was appointed.

The committee’s first act was to elect Rev. Robert Lawrence as chairman of the event. The council soon appointed this committee to be Little Compton’s Bicentennial Committee as well, and Little Compton ‘75-’76 was born. This committee went on to present two years of epic events! Nearly 50 years later, they are still remembered by those who were here.

One of LC350’s goals is to ensure that townspeople still remember our 350th in 2075! 

2024 by East Bay Media Group

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Mike Rego has worked at East Bay Newspapers since 2001, helping the company launch The Westport Shorelines. He soon after became a Sports Editor, spending the next 10-plus years in that role before taking over as editor of The East Providence Post in February of 2012. To contact Mike about The Post or to submit information, suggest story ideas or photo opportunities, etc. in East Providence, email