The Isle of Wight County Press has been bringing Islanders the news since 1884. We've delved into our archives.

124 years ago, in May 1900:
The go-ahead town of Yarmouth was the first to install electric light. It also stole a march on the rest of the Island by being the first town to electrically illuminate its church, St James's.

One of the few literary letters of the novelist Charles Dickens was auctioned for £14 as part of the sale of contents of Whittle Mead, in Shanklin. It was purchased on behalf of well-known
dramatist Henry Arthur Jones.

99 years ago, in May 1925:
Southern Railway main line engines were named after places served by the railway, among them one called The Needles.

The well-known 6m yacht Maid Marion was rammed and sunk by a Southern Railway steamer off Ryde. Two people, a man and a woman, were asleep on board the yacht at the time
and had a very narrow escape.

The young Earl of Cardigan secretly married Miss Joan Houlton Salter, who came from a highly-regarded Ryde family. They were married at Brentford Register Office and lunched in
the West End, before Earl Cardigan, 21, returned to his studies in Oxford and the new Lady Cardigan returned home.

74 years ago, in May 1950:

Councillors decided that films and comic books featuring young detective Dick Barton were having a bad influence on youngsters. It was suggested that young people had too much money to spend and could no longer entertain themselves.

A reader wrote in to tell the story of his pet magpie, who would circulate around every glass at a party, trying each drink until he found brandy, whereupon he would drain the glass and
fall over drunk.

Island policemen were feeling very self-conscious after receiving their new uniforms. Gone were the traditional buttoned-to-the-chin tunics and in their place the officers were given open-necked jackets with blue collars and ties.

Ryde Airport, which had been closed since 1939, was officially reopened by the local mayor and mayoress. The couple, who had never flown before, went for an inaugural flight in a De
Havilland Rapide aircraft.

49 years ago, in May 1975:
Owner of Brading Wax Museum, Graham Osborn-Smith, suggested at a tourism conference that if the Island were to lose its seasonally-minded approach, it could become as successful as Brighton and Bournemouth.

34 years ago, in May 1990:
Building work on the £25.8 million St Mary's Hospital, Newport, was almost complete, with most of the complex expected to be handed over to the IW Health Authority the following

Hole-in-the-wall post-boxes at Island post offices were to be phased out and replaced with free-standing ones, partly due to the growing problem of fires in boxes and the difficulty of
reduced access to opening them when post offices were closed.