Block Island Times

Land Trust discusses next steps for “Overlook”

A few weeks ago when the subject of the “Overlook Property” came up in a Town Council meeting, Councilor Martha Ball remarked that the newly acquired property should be called something else because the town, and the Block Island Land Trust had not bought the part of the property with the building named the Overlook.What the town and Land Trust purchased was a field. And evidently, the field has a name: Sam P. Meadow.One person on the Land Trust thought that the name came from the neighboring Samuel Peckham Inn, built by Lew Gaffett,and turned into condominiums in 2006. (It is now called Salt Pond Settlement.)But Lew’s daughter Kim Gaffett said no, it was the other way around and that all the old deeds called the property Sam P. Meadow. “Lew Gaffett made up Sam Peckham from that,” she said.The Peckham family was a prominent one in Rhode Island and Massachusetts with the earliest known member, John Peckham, appearing as an “inhabitant” of Aquidneck Island in 1638. The family owned large tracts of land in Rhode Island but it doesn’t seem that there was any Block Island connection, and no Peckhams are listed on Settlers Rock, which depicts

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