State of Rhode Island

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cop-side-rhode-islandWhile it is the smallest state — covering just 1,200 square miles — Rhode Island has a history with outsized names. The actual official name of the state remains the “State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations.” And when Moses Brown co-founded what would become Brown University, it was called the “College in the English Colony of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations.” If sports had been around then, perhaps its athletes would have sported “CECRIPP” on jerseys. Nickname “The Ocean State,” there is a nautical theme to the state’s culture and hub of that activity is Newport Harbor, where the famed Jazz Festival is held. In addition to long names, the last of the original colonies to become a state also has a long history of progressive politics. Theologian Roger Williams — who settled in Providence after being booted from Massachusetts in 1635 — was credited as the originator of the principles of the First Amendment (which was the very reason he was booted from Massachusetts). He also led his colony to be the first to prohibit slavery in North America in 1652. More than 100 years later, the Battle of Rhode Island would feature the first African-American regiment to fight for America, making a gallant stand against the British.

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