“Kingston had a safe and sane Fourth of July”

So said the Old Colony Memorial newspaper on July 9, 1910.

The Jones River Village Club (now the Jones River Village Historical Society) had discussed for several months how to promote the state’s new restrictions on fireworks, which limited the use of blank cartridges, cannon rockets and other explosive means of celebration.  The grand result: a Fourth of July parade for the whole town that the paper reported as “a great success in every way.”

Police Chief Ephraim Pratt served as Marshall.   Houses along the parade route sported “handsome decorations.” The procession included riders, floats, automobiles and bicyclists.

Dirigible float, Fourth of July parade, 1910

Dirigible float, Fourth of July parade, 1910

Most of the floats were pulled by teams of oxen or horses.  Above, what looks like a dirigible graces one gaily decorated wagon, while below, riders include a knight from the King Arthur Flour Company, a rough-ridin’ Teddy Roosevelt look-alike, a dude and a clown.  Festive!

Riders in costume, Fourth of July parade, 1910

Riders in costume, Fourth of July parade, 1910

Many of the floats bore advertising, like the wagon of grocer E.S. Wright which pitched Sherwin Williams Paint, or the cart below, unfortunately not listed in the paper, which apparently touted somebody’s clams!

Clam float, Fourth of July parade, 1910

Clam float, Fourth of July parade, 1910

Source: The Old Colony Memorial, July 9, 1910; minutes of the Jones River Village Club, 1910.

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We are the staff and volunteers of the Local History Room at the Kingston (Mass.) Public Library.
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2 Responses to “Kingston had a safe and sane Fourth of July”

  1. Pingback: New Exhibit: A Safe and Sane Fourth « Pique of the Week

  2. Pingback: Go Fourth and Parade! | Pique of the Week

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