New trivia night to quiz students about local history

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PORTSMOUTH, R.I. — When was Portsmouth founded? When was the compact signed? The Portsmouth Historical Society will quiz local students at a new trivia night with questions focusing on local history. 

The Portsmouth Historical Society will hold the first Portsmouth History Trivia night on Thursday, March 9, from 6 to 8 p.m., at the Gulf Stream Bar & Grille, 1 Lagoon Road, Melville (formerly the Melville Grille).

Portsmouth students from the middle and high schools have been invited to form teams to compete in this event, which will focus on trivia questions relating to Portsmouth history.

Town Historian and Historical Society President Jim Garman, who will be the judge for
this event, says this can be a good way to get school-aged young adults to take an interest in local history.

Noting that a key element of the society’s mission is to build enthusiasm for preserving and supporting local history, Garman says, “There seems to be little time in our school curriculum for local history, so maybe a little competition will provide an incentive for our students to investigate Portsmouth’s fascinating history.”

Society recruit Dave Rogers, a Newport resident, volunteered to be the trivia master of ceremonies for the evening.

One of the owners and managers of the Gulf Stream Bar & Grille, Reada Evans, stepped forwarded to host this history trivia night.

The Gulf Stream building itself is a part of Portsmouth’s history, being housed in an original Quonset Hut, which was built in 1942 as part of the US Navy’s PT-Boat Training Center at Melville.

The space was converted into a restaurant more than 30 years ago and began operation as The Gulf Stream Bar and Grille in May 2016. 

According to Historical Society Vice President Doug Smith, while this is the History Society’s first Portsmouth History Trivia night, it will be not the last.

The society plans to make this trivia night an annual event and to sponsor additional history trivia competitions for all ages at other local venues in the coming months.

“It’s a fun way of learning about the history of our community that Portsmouth residents of all ages can enjoy,” Smith said.

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