Rhode Island

Rhode Island (English: The State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations) is the smallest state in the USA, which is part of the New England region and is located on the shore of the Atlantic Ocean. Rhode Island was one of the 13 American colonies that rebelled against England. Initially, the state consisted of two parts: Providence Plantations (the mainland part of the state, the largest city is Providence) and Rhode Island (the island part, the largest city is Newport).


The colony of Rhode Island was founded in 1636 by Roger Williams, after he was expelled from the Massachusetts Bay Colony because of his religious views. He settled on the promontory that encloses Narragansett Bay near the Mashasack River, naming the place Providence and proclaiming freedom of religion for the Baptist settlers there.

On May 18, 1652, Rhode Island passed the first law in North America that prohibited slavery.

Providence, Rhode Island

City in the United States
State Rhode Island
County Providence County
Coordinates 41°50’NB, 71°22’WL
Surface 53 km²
– land 47 km²
– water 6 km²
(April 1, 2010)
(3709 inhabitants/km²)
Mayor Jorge Elorza (D)
Website providenceri.gov

According to COUNTRYAAH, Providence is the capital and largest city of Rhode Island, a state of the United States. The city has 179,883 inhabitants (2019). It is also the third largest city in New England (after Boston and Worcester).

The name “Providence” was part of the official name of the state from May 1790 to November 2020: Rhode Island and the Providence Plantations. Following an amendment to the state constitution, the official name of the state was changed to State of Rhode Island on November 30, 2020.


The colony was founded in 1636 by Roger Williams, and was one of the original thirteen colonies. Williams acquired ownership of the area by purchasing it from the Narragansett Indians. He called the establishment “Providence”, which means “providence” in Dutch. He thereby wanted to honor the Providence of God. Williams made Providence a refuge for persecuted religious dissidents after he himself was exiled by the Puritans in Massachusetts.

During the American Revolution, the settlers in Providence were in solidarity with the resistance against the British crown, but were able to avoid occupation by British soldiers.

After the Declaration of Independence, Providence mainly focused on textile manufacturing and other industries.


10.5 % of the population is older than 65 and 32.3 % consists of single – person households. Unemployment is 5.4 % (2000 census figures).

About 30% of Providence’s population is Hispanic and Hispanic, 14.5% of African origin and 6% of Asian origin.

The population increased from 160,281 in 1990 to 173,618 in 2000.


Brown University, one of the American Ivy League universities, is located in Providence.

Traffic and transport

Providence is located on Amtrak’s Northeast Corridor , which provides the city with high-speed rail service to Boston (travel time 40 minutes), New York (3 hours), and Washington DC (6:30 AM).

Providence is located on Interstate 95, a highway that is part of the Interstate Highway System. This road connects Providence with Boston and New York.

Theodore Francis Green State Airport (TF Greene Airport) is Providence’s airport. This airport is also widely used by passengers from Massachusetts who live south of Boston.

The city is located on the Providence River.


In January the average temperature is -2.3 °C, in July it is 22.6 °C. Annual average rainfall is 1156.5 mm (data based on the measurement period 1961-1990).

Partner cities

  • Florence (Italy)

Nearby places

The figure below shows nearby places within 5 miles of Providence.


Central Falls (8 km)

Cranston (6 km)

East Providence (6 km)

North Providence (5 km)

Pawtucket (7 km)


  • George Hitchcock (1850-1913), painter
  • Dodge MacKnight (1860-1950), painter
  • Abby Aldrich Rockefeller (1874–1948), filantrope
  • H. P. Lovecraft (1890-1937), writer
  • George Macready (1899–1973), actor
  • Nelson Eddy (1901-1967), actor and singer
  • Frankie Carle (1903–2001), pianist, big band leader and composer
  • Ruth Hussey (1911-2005), actrice
  • Grace Lee Boggs (1915–2015), political activist and writer
  • Bobby Hackett (1915–1976), jazz trumpeter, cornetist and guitarist
  • Bruce Sundlun (1920–2011), politician
  • Aaron Temkin Beck (1921-2021), psychiatrist, psychotherapist and professor
  • Nicholas Colasanto (1924–1985), actor and director
  • Cormac McCarthy (1933), writer
  • Stanley Fish (1938), literary scholar and lawyer
  • Peter Gerety (1940), actor
  • Spalding Gray (1941–2004), actor and writer
  • Bill Conti (1942), filmcomponist
  • Ron McLarty (1947), author-actor
  • David Olney (1948), singer-songwriter
  • Jeffrey Osborne (1948), funk- en r&b-muzikant
  • Marilyn Chambers (1952-2009), pornoactrice
  • Lincoln Chafee (1953), politicus
  • Paul Di Filippo (1954), science fiction writer and critic
  • Scott Hamilton (1954), jazzsaxofonist
  • Jane Rosenthal (1954), filmproducent
  • Tom Donilon (1955), Democratic Party official
  • Brian Helgeland (1961), screenwriter
  • Pat Toomey (1961), Pennsylvania Senator
  • Mark Kiely (1963), actor
  • Martha McSally (1966), senator voor Arizona
  • Peter Boyer (1970), composer, conductor and music teacher
  • Matt Hyson (1970), wrestler
  • Jill Craybas (1974), tennis star
  • Shanna Moakler (1975), model and actress
  • Josh Schwartz (1976), creator and lead director
  • Pauly D (1980), television personality and professional DJ
  • Damien Chazelle (1985), director and screenwriter
  • Michael Parkhurst (1987), football player
  • Marissa Castelli (1990), figure skater
  • Jared Donaldson (1996), tennis player
  • Robert Capron (1998), actor

Providence, Rhode Island