Newport This Week

Last Week in 02840: A Fine Sendoff for Specks

A Fine Sendoff for Specks
Frank Harrington and Liz Stouffer

Frank Harrington and Liz Stouffer

Members of The Protective Club, a.k.a. Specks, gathered on Nov. 27 to say goodbye to the bar that has been a neighborhood staple for more than a century.

Frank Harrington’s great grandfather, DJ Sullivan, opened the establishment for “literary and social purposes” in 1904. His earliest memories began when his grandfather, Sam Harrington, was proprietor. Sam took over the bar in 1934 after retiring from the freight company, Harrington & Maher.

“There were a lot of former prisoners of war who frequented the bar when I was a youngster and they made me nervous,” said Harrington, who quickly added that his dad told him they were his grandfather’s friends from World War II and wouldn’t be leaving any time soon, so he better get used to it.”

Over the years, Specks had brushes with fame. John “Specks” Harrington was a driver during the festivals, resulting in Muddy Waters and the Chamber Brothers playing at the club. Years later, the movie, “Evening,” was filmed there.

Frank recalled pitch tournaments, the club winning the city’s softball championship, and even a judge writing a code of justice for the military in between games of gin with his dad.

Frank was thrilled to receive a cake from Amanda Erickson with “The Protective Club” and its signature green doors emblazoned on it. It was a standout on the pool table, which was covered in food made by members.

Sharon McCarthy and Jay Cardosi, owners of the nearby IA, popped in, as did Brian Arnold of the Hillside Café, who also remarked on the history the building witnessed over the years.

Joey Hicks, Frank Amaral and Chuck Kenahan.
Photo by Carla Kenahan.

The Sullivan Trifecta:
John Sullivan, Kevin Sullivan and Timmy Sullivan

Peter Quarry, David Quarry and Ellen Kelly

Amanda Erickson with the cake she made. Photo by Liz Stouffer.

Peter Booth and Brian Arnold

Sharon McCarthy and Jay Cardosi


Waving Goodbye: Joey Hicks and Will Gest


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