2019 RHODY AWARD WINNERS
The project highlights the village’s multi-layered, sometimes surprising history through a series of nine interpretive signs.
The village of Wickford has a compelling history, embodied in its buildings and landscape but not always obvious to residents or visitors. Historic Wickford, Inc. (HistWick) thought up a way to make this history more evident: a series of nine interpretive markers touching on themes such as the Narragansett settlement of the area, the founding of Wickford, the shipbuilding industry, and the role of African American mariners and women entrepreneurs in the village economy. HistWick partnered with local artists to create original paintings for the markers, forging a connection with the many artists who currently call Wickford home. The Rhode Island Foundation provided the project with critical funding. The markers form the basis of a walking tour, which can be completed independently or with web-based audio, and are the subject of a documentary that aired on Rhode Island PBS. Through these platforms, HistWick highlights the village’s multi-layered, sometimes surprising history, and demonstrates the role education can play in historic preservation.