Tiny yet mighty, Rhode Island is a US state which many people outside of America may forget about occasionally! It’s a crying shame, as the state has some incredible history, and we have, as always, lined up some fascinating facts for you to pore over. What is it that makes Rhode Island one of the most interesting states in the US? Let’s take a look at some fast facts – which are sometimes strange but true!
Let’s not understate matters – Rhode Island is the smallest state in the whole of the USA. At its absolute widest, RI only measures 37 miles!
RI has 35 unique islands, too. It is a waterfront state, and it shares some of its water border with New York State.
Despite its tiny size in terms of area, Rhode Island is actually the second most densely-populated state in the country. It’s only second to New Jersey in this regard.
Its capital city and most populous is Providence.
Flag of Rhode Island
Despite this, too, it ranks eighth from bottom in terms of total population. As of 2020, Rhode Island has over a million people resident, however, Wyoming has less than 600,000, making it the runaway smallest populous.
Some refer to Rhode Island as the toy capital of the US. That’s because you’ll find the main headquarters for Hasbro Toys based in Pawtucket, RI. You’ll spot it easily enough thanks to the huge Mr Potato Head that stands outside.
Rhode Island is only one of two states in the US which refused to pass the 18th amendment, which was the prohibition law against alcohol sales. The only other state to reject the amendment was Connecticut.
RI is a popular state for fishing fanatics, as well as those who love to surf and sail. That’s thanks to its vast array of seaside towns. In fact, one of its nicknames is the ‘Ocean State’.
Another is the ‘Plantation State’. Thanks to the negative connotations the word plantation has with slavery, it was proposed that this name change. However, 78% people voting in the ballot to change it blocked the move.
The name of Rhode Island is thought to refer back to the Isle of Rhodes in Europe. However, other historians claim that the name comes from the Dutch for ‘Red Island’, ‘Rood Eylandt’.
Providence, Rhode Island
Famous people to hail from Rhode Island include actor Viola Davis, American Football star Will Blackmon, and author HP Lovecraft.
Seth MacFarlane’s popular animated TV series, Family Guy, is based in a fictional suburb of Rhode Island.
However, you can see several backgrounds in the show which resemble real buildings on the RI skyline.
Many states used to celebrate Victory Day, the end of World War II, however, it seems to purely be a celebration confined to Rhode Island in the modern age. It’s thought that other states stopped observing the holiday as it may offend the Japanese and stunt trade. That’s because the holiday takes place around the time of Hiroshima and Nagasaki being bombed in early August.
Do you know any fun 0r interesting facts about Rhode Island you’d like to share? Let us know in the comments section below!