Rhode Island Rankings & Facts
Rhode Island’s independent streak – it was the only state to have rejected ratification of 18th amendment Ban on the manufacture and sale of alcohol in 1920 – has its roots in the 17th century as a land of self-government and individual liberty.
Roger Williams forced to flee religious persecution in Massachusetts Established the first permanent settlement In Providence on land purchased from the Narragansett Indians in 1636. Newport became a major trading and shipping port, and Rhode Island’s economy boomed.
Rhode Island was the first of the original 13 colonies to renounce allegiance to Great Britain in 1776 and was the last to ratify the constitution in 1790, insisting that a Bill of Rights be added.
After the American Revolution, the state had the nation’s first successful water-powered cotton mill, sparking the nation’s Industrial Revolution. The mill was developed by Samuel Slater, known as the father of the American textile industry.
Today, Major Rhode Island industries include Biomedicine, Cyber and Data Analytics, Defense Shipbuilding and Marine Products, Advanced Professional Services and Manufacturing. The state’s transportation and tourism industries are also growing, with billions of dollars poured into the state annually.
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