The Mystery Of Doubloon Street

And why doesn’t Google Maps do gangways? So what is this weird little street. It is the first left when leaving the parking lot behind the Wild Colonial Tavern and it is ridiculously narrow. Given that today is Mardi Gras and people might be throwing doubloons around we decided to look into it.

The text below is taken from a pdf from the Providence Historical Society posted by the Lila Delman real estate agency whose office is located nearby.

Throughout the 18th century, Providence evolved from a farming community into an international seaport, trading with other American colonies, the West Indies, and Europe; and, after the Revolutionary War, with China, India, and other nations of the Far East. By the early 19th century, wharves, warehouses, shipyards, stores, and other related businesses crowded the east bank of the Providence River . . . Water Street (today’s South Main Street) ran parallel to the riverbank from Market Square south to India Street. Access to the wharves was provided by a series of narrow gangways (alleys) with names like Gold, Silver, Coin, Guilder, Doubloon, and Sovereign, evoking an image of the fortunes to be made in foreign ports of call.

One more thing: For some reason the name of Doubloon Street does not appear on Google maps . . . just the ghost of the gangway.

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