Population: 1,057,315 (Source: 2012 U.S. Census)
Major Cities: Providence, Warwick, Cranston, Pawtucket, East Providence
Borders: Connecticut, Massachusetts, New York (maritime border), Atlantic Ocean
Gross Domestic Product (GDP): $50,956 million (2012 U.S. Department of Commerce)
Jewelry, metal products, shipbuilding, healthcare, tourism, and electrical equipment
Agriculture products include dairy products, eggs, nursery products, and vegetables
How Rhode Island got its name: The state website says the name came from Dutch explorer Adriaen Block who called the land Roodt Eylandt, which means red island. He got the name from the red clay of the Rhode Island coastline.
Other sources claim that the name comes from Italian explorer Giovanni da Verrazzano who thought one of the islands off the coast of Rhode Island looked like the island Rhodes off the coast of Greece.
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Rhode Island State Symbols
State Nickname: Ocean State
State Slogan: Unwind
State Motto: Hope
State flower: Violet
State bird: Rhode Island Red Chicken
State fish: Striped bass
State tree: Red Maple
State mammal: NA
State foods: Coffee Milk
Becoming a State
Date admitted: May 29, 1790
Number admitted: 13
Prior Name: Colony of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations, then sovereign state in Confederation
Postal Abbreviation: RI
The Geography of Rhode Island
Total Size: 1,045 sq. miles (source: 2003 Census)
Geographical Low Point: Atlantic Ocean at Sea Level (source: U.S. Geological Survey)
Geographical High Point: Jerimoth Hill at 812 feet, located in the county/subdivision of Providence (source: U.S. Geological Survey)
Central Point: Located in Kent County approx. 1 mile south-southwest of Crompton (source: U.S. Geological Survey)
Counties: 5 (source: National Association of Counties)
Bodies of Water: Atlantic Ocean, Narragansett Bay, Rhode Island Sound, Block Island Sound, Scituate Reservoir, Sakonnet River
- Chris Van Allsburg - Author who wrote Jumanji, The Polar Express, and Zathura
- George Cohan - Musical composer who wrote patriotic songs such as 'You're a Grand Old Flag' and 'Over There'
- Elisabeth Hasselbeck - TV talk show host and reality TV star
- Matthew C. Perry - U.S. Naval commander
- Gilbert Stuart - Artist who painted the famous portrait of George Washington
- Meredith Vieira - TV talk show host and news anchor
- Rhode Island is the smallest US State in geographical area.
- Newport, RI held the first circus in the US in 1774.
- The official name of Rhode Island is Rhode Island and the Providence Plantations.
- The Tennis Hall of Fame is located in Rhode Island.
- All the residents of the state live within about 30 miles from the water.
- It was the last of the original thirteen colonies to become a state.
- The oldest carousel in the United States is the Flying Horse Carousel located in Watch Hill.
- The official state rock is Cumberlandite. This is a rare rock and is only found in the state.
- It gets its nickname from having so much ocean coastline for such a small state.
- Rhode Island made the first law that prohibited slavery in 1652.
Professional Sports Teams
There are no major professional sports teams in Rhode Island.
Geography >> US States>> Rhode Island History
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