From the bell tower of the Cranston Print Works in Spragueville, which called hundreds to work in its time, to the quiet ripples of the Pawtuxet River, where the first settlers of Cranston built their homes in the 17th century, and from the family homesteads of Western Cranston to the elegant houses of Edgewood, Cranston is a unique place that is more than just a city--it is a neighborhood of people who take pride in their individuality and their hometown roots. During the Civil War, when people talked about Cranston, they were talking about Spragueville and the A.&W. Sprague Mills, then the largest calico manufacturing company in the world. The legacy of the Sprague Brothers, Amasa and William, owners of the A.&W. Sprague Manufacturing Company in the mid-1800s, had a wide-spread effect on the region. The murder of Amasa Sprague in 1843 changed the face of capital punishment in Rhode Island.
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19th century A&W Sprague Company Alice Amasa Sprague Andrew Knight Arnold Arthur Arthur Fenner AUBURN GRAMMAR SCHOOL back row became Bette Miller Bigbee Brayton building built Castle Hill Farm Charles corner CRANSTON HIGH SCHOOL Cranston Historical Society CRANSTON PRINT CRANSTON STREET Dean DYER AVENUE Earle EDEN PARK EDGEWOOD VOLUNTEER FIRE Fire King Frank front row Gordon horse ice house INTERSECTION OF CRANSTON John JONATHAN KNIGHT Joy Homestead KNIGHTSVILLE MEETING HOUSE left to right located Lydia Rapoza Collection mayor MESHANTICUT BAPTIST CHURCH Monkeytown NARRAGANSETT PARK Narragansett Trotting Park Nehemiah Knight Oak Lawn Oak Lawn Avenue PARK AVENUE Pawtuxet River Pawtuxet Volunteer Fire PHENIX AVENUE PIPPIN ORCHARD SCHOOL POCASSET POCAsSETT CEMETERY PONTIAC AVENUE Potter Providence railroad Reverend Rhode Island SAMUEL CRANSTON SCITUATE AVENUE second row Sprague Mills Stone tavern third row Universal Winding Company unknown VIGORINE Volunteer Fire Company WILBUR AVENUE WILLIAM COMSTOCK William Sprague IV