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The Rhode Island Portal

Rhode Island (/ˌrd -/ (About this soundlisten), like road), officially the State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations, is a state in the New England region of the United States. It is the smallest U.S. state by area, the seventh least populous, and the second most densely populated. Rhode Island is bordered by Connecticut to the west, Massachusetts to the north and east, and the Atlantic Ocean to the south via Rhode Island Sound and Block Island Sound. It also shares a small maritime border with New York. Providence is the state capital and most populous city in Rhode Island.

On May 4, 1776, the Colony of Rhode Island was the first of the Thirteen Colonies to renounce its allegiance to the British Crown, and it was the fourth among the newly independent states to ratify the Articles of Confederation on February 9, 1778. The state boycotted the 1787 convention which drew up the United States Constitution and initially refused to ratify it; it was the last of the original 13 states to do so on May 29, 1790.

Rhode Island's official nickname is "The Ocean State", a reference to the large bays and inlets that amount to about 14 percent of its total area.

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Governor Arnold grave medallion
Benedict Arnold (1615 – 1678) was president and then governor of the Colony of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations, serving for a total of 11 years in these roles. He learned the Indian languages at an early age and became one of the two leading interpreters in the Rhode Island colony, Roger Williams being the other. In 1651, he began his public service which lasted continuously until his death. He became a Commissioner and Assistant, and succeeded Roger Williams as President of the colony in 1657, serving for three years. In 1662, he was once again elected President; the Royal Charter of 1663 was delivered from England during the second year of this term, naming him as the first governor of the colony. Arnold was a bold and decisive leader; he was elected for two additional terms as governor, the last time following the devastation of King Philip's War. He died on 19 June 1678 while still in office and was buried in the Arnold Burying Ground, located on Pelham Street in Newport. In his will, he left his "stone built wind mill" to his wife, which still stands as an important Newport landmark. His many descendants include General Benedict Arnold, best known for his treason during the American Revolutionary War, and Senator Stephen Arnold Douglas, who debated Abraham Lincoln in 1858 and lost to him during the 1860 presidential election.

Quotes related to Rhode Island

Philip gourevitch 2008.jpg
Political corruption is to Rhode Islanders as smog is to people who live in Los Angeles: nobody complains of its absence, but when it rolls around everyone feels right at home.

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