50 Years Ago – November, 1971

50 Years Ago – November, 1971

November, 1971

On November 1st the U. S. Mint released the first Eisenhower Dollars, but the large coins never really gained popularity except among coin collectors.

The Smithfield Town Council appointed eleven new town employees to positions created by the federally funded Emergency Employment Act of 1971.

Arthur S. DeToro to Town Council Administrative Clerk.

Albert F. Bruno to Assistant Building Inspector.

Alphonse Finlay to Police Custodian.

Betty A. Bouchard to Board of Canvassers Clerk.

Ernest E. Rylander, Jr., to Fire Dispatcher.

Anita H. Hunt to Fire Department Clerk.

Robert J. Eberts III to Police Clerk.

Betty L. Poon to Town Hall Clerk.

Victor Tosoni to Highway Department Equipment Operator.

Anthony V. Caito and Norman R. Robitaille to Highway Department Drivers.

The town received a federal grant of $27,400 to purchase and develop what is now known as Willow Field in Greenville.

A local carpet dealer was advertising “high – density “shag” carpeting for $5.99 a square yard. For those too young to remember, “shag” was thick strands of carpet that gave a room the appearance of a lawn, and tended to be tough on vacuum cleaners.

Route 295 was still under construction, and nearing what is today the Farnum Pike overpass, which was initially supposed to contain a clover leaf.

A public hearing was scheduled to consider weather or not to build an ice rink somewhere in Smithfield. The proposal was submitted by the Smithfield Junior Hockey Association, and history shows that the rink was built.

A local car dealer was offering snow tires from $21 to $25. Studs could be added to each tire for an extra fee.

On November 13th, the United States space probe “Mariner 9” became the first object from earth to successfully enter orbit around the planet Mars.

On November 15th, INTEL introduced the INTEL 4004, the world’s first microprocessor.

Ronald Patterson of the Georgiaville Fire Department instructed an industrial and standard first aid course which was attended by fellow firemen, school teachers, and employees of Mine Safety.

If one went to the Apple valley Cinema in November of 1971, they might have seen “Carry on Camping”, a British comedy film; “T. R. Baskin”, a drama about a woman who moves to Chicago seeking romance and a career; “Dr. Zhivago”, a romance set in Russia, or “Summer of ‘42”, a coming of age film set in WWII.

A fictional story appeared in an October issue of the Bryant College newspaper, “The Archway”, relating to a cemetery location the campus. The details are unknown, but apparently names taken from the tombstones were used in the story which involved ghosts. Descendants of those buried there weren’t happy, and the story created a brief stir. In November, about twenty Bryant students took on the task of cleaning up the cemetery by removing thick brush and trees as well as up-righting fallen markers.

An attempt was made by this author to discover what the story was about, but apparently the Archway issues from June to November of 1971 are missing from the university archives. If anyone knows, please contact the magazine.

Apparently bomb threats had been a problem at the Smithfield High School. It was reported that since the opening of school in September, twenty-five threats had been called in. Detective Saverio Serapiglia of the Smithfield Police investigated, and arranged for the phone company to place a “trap” on the school phone line, which resulted in three arrests.

On November 24th, a man identifying himself as D. B. Cooper jumped from Northwest Orient Flight 305 which he’d hijacked, holding a duffle bag full of cash. He has never been caught and today the folklore and mystery surrounding the event endures.

On November 28th a piano recital was held at the Greenville Public Library featuring students taught by Mrs. Helen Taubman. Those participating included Lynda and Sandy Wilkund, Julia Crory, Joseph Pilkington, Susan Lantoro, Debbie Robertson, Joanne Beaudry, Carolyn Chrzan, Lynda Buckley, Patti Monahan, Susan Waradzin, and Lisa Clemence.

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