Providence in Providence County, Rhode Island — The American Northeast (New England)
Welcome to India Point Park
Providence Harbor Walk at Fox Point & India Point
In 1962, Mary Elizabeth Sharpe wrote of her vision for a park at the head of Narragansett Bay. Her passion for landscape allowed her to see beyond the abused and neglected waterfront. She shared her thoughts in a Providence Journal article. “The Providence area is a dream by nature… perched to overlook a breathtaking expanse of sparkling bay front… It is a paradox that this beauty has gone so completely unrecognized. Our bay-front –a potential “Rio” of the north’- is a hodgepodge of unrelated and semi-decayed commercial activities… and will again be, I believe- a sparkling inspiration in the plan of our town.”
Mrs. Sharpe set the wheels in motion. Land had to be bought and swapped, piles of scrap metal and abandoned tracks had to be removed and money had to be raised. Mrs. Sharpe herself donated more than $150,000 toward development of the park. Hundreds of others made donations, including children from the Fox Point Elementary School. Twelve years after Mrs. Sharpe’s proposal, India Point Park was dedicated on September 7, 1974.
An aerial drawing illustrates Albert Veri’s vision of India
In 2000, concern about the re-routing of I-195 led to the creation of Friends of India Point Park. Rhode Island residents and other visitors continued to enjoy and help maintain the park. Activities depicted below include the community boating fleet the Cape Verdean Independence Day celebration, Mexican Soccer League tournaments.
This watercolor by Edward Peckham depicts the Fox Point shore in 1832
The same shoreline as in the painting above, just before work began to create India Point Park in 1974.
To design the park, Mrs. Sharp hired young landscape architect Albert Veri in 1971. Veri spoke of the project; “We wanted to bring the water’s edge to people who were cut off by the highway and industry. Rusty mountains of scrap metal covered nearly three acres.” In his work, Veri believed that parks should be accessible to communities, offering people a place to come and enjoy themselves. “It’s but a beginning,” he later reflected. “You plant something and it grows. Adjacent areas in time will tie in. This will be the seed.” Time has proved Veri and Mrs. Sharpe correct. (Marker Number 7.)
Topics. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: Bridges & Viaducts. A significant historical month for this entry is September 1876.
Location. 41° 49.137′ N, 71° 23.644′ Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Providence RI 02903, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. Fox Point: The 19th Century Port of Providence / Shipping Expands Around the Point (about 500 feet away, measured in a direct line); Fox Point Cape Verdean Community (approx. 0.2 miles away); Tockwotton and the Indiamen / Sails to Rails 1835: Providence's First Train Station (approx. 0.2 miles away); Roger Williams Landing 1636 (approx. 0.3 miles away); Bridging the Seekonk (approx. 0.3 miles away); The Landing Place of Roger Williams (approx. 0.4 miles away); Providence River Bridge (approx. 0.4 miles away); Providence River Park (approx. 0.4 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Providence.
Credits. This page was last revised on June 22, 2020. It was originally submitted on August 4, 2014, by Sandra Hughes Tidwell of Killen, Alabama, USA. This page has been viewed 461 times since then and 31 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6. submitted on August 4, 2014, by Sandra Hughes Tidwell of Killen, Alabama, USA. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.