Rhode Island facts

Though popularly known just as 'Rhode Island', the official name of the state is 'State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations'
Rhode Island fun facts

Rhode Island is the smallest state in size in the United States. It covers an area of 1,214 square miles. Its distances North to South are 48 miles and East to West 37 miles.


Cool Rhode Island fun facts

Rhode Island was the first of the original Thirteen Colonies to declare independence from British rule, declaring itself independent two months before any other colony. On May 4, 1776, Rhode Island became the first colony to renounce allegiance to King George III of England. In 1908, the General Assembly established May 4th as “Rhode Island Independence Day.”
Rhode Island facts

Rhode Island was the last of the original thirteen colonies to become a state. Preferring the Articles of Confederation, Rhode Island refused to participate in creating the U.S. Constitution. It was the last of the 13 original colonies to ratify the U.S. Constitution, demanding that the Bill of Rights, which guarantees individual liberties, be added.
Cool Rhode Island fun facts

The name 'Rhode Island' derived from the name given by Dutch explorer Adrian Block to the largest island in Narragansett Bay (now called 'Aquidneck Island' to distinguish it from the state's name). He named it "Roodt Eylandt" meaning "red island" in reference to the red clay that lined the shore. Early settlers, including Roger Williams, the founder of the Rhode Island, spelled it 'Rode Island', but the Royal Charter granted by King Charles II of England in 1663 called it the "Colony of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations"
Rhode Island fun facts

Banished from the Massachusetts Bay Colony for his radical views, Roger Williams purchased land from the Narragansett Indians and founded the first permanent white settlement in Providence in 1636. His firm belief in religious freedom, tolerance and the separation between church and state governed the colony of Rhode Island and inspired the future founders of the United States.

Weird Rhode Island fun facts

Benedict Arnold, the first governor appointed under the Rhode Island Royal Charter in 1663, was the great grandfather of the notorious traitor of the Revolutionary War—also named Benedict Arnold
Funny Rhode Island fun facts
Rhode Island is the only state that still celebrates the end of World War II on Victory Day (which is also known as VJ Day). The official state holiday is observed each year on the second Monday of August.
Rhode Island - Video

Rhode Island fun facts for kids

Providence served as the capital of the Colony of Providence from 1636 to 1644. Portsmouth served as the capital of the Colony of Aquidneck Island from 1639 to 1644. From 1644 to 1776, Providence served as the capital of the Colony of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations. From 1776 to 1853, the legislature of the State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations rotated among the county seats of the state's five counties: Providence, Newport, East Greenwich, South Kingstown, and Bristol. From 1854 to 1899, the legislature of the State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations alternated sessions between Providence and Newport. Providence became permanent capital of the State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations in 1900.
Rhode Island facts

Rhode Island was home to the first National Lawn Tennis Championship (the precursor to the U.S. Open) in 1881. It was held at the Newport Casino. Rhode Island is home to the Tennis Hall of Fame.
Weird Rhode Island facts

Rhode Island has no county government. It is divided into 39 municipalities each having its own form of local government.
amazing Rhode Island facts

Judge Darius Baker imposed the first jail sentence for speeding in an automobile on August 28, 1904 in Newport. The defendant was found guilty of speeding at 15 miles per hour
Weird Rhode Island facts

Rhode Island has the longest state name (State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations) and shortest state motto (Hope) in the United States
Rhode Island - Video

Weird Rhode Island facts

The Industrial Revolution in the United States started in Rhode Island with the development of Samuel Slater's water-powered cotton mill in Pawtucket, Rhode Island. In 1793, Samuel Slater's mill in Pawtucket became America's first successful water-powered cotton mill. Pawtucket is also the home of the toy company Hasbro's headquarters.
amazing Rhode Island facts

Rhode Islanders were the first to take military action against England by sinking one of her ships in the Narragansett Bay located between Newport and Providence. The English ship was called "The Gaspee".
Weird Rhode Island facts

Rhode Island founder Roger Williams established the First Baptist Church in America in 1638. He established it in Providence, Rhode Island
amazing Rhode Island facts

Since 1785 Bristol has the longest running, unbroken series of 4th of July Independence Day observances in the country.
Weird Rhode Island facts

The Touro Synagogue is the oldest synagogue in North America. Built in 1763 the synagogue houses the oldest torah in North America.
amazing Rhode Island facts

Newport, Rhode Island hosted the country’s first ever circus in 1774.
Weird Rhode Island facts

Rhode Island shares a state water border with New York.