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Rhode Island Overview
Officially known as the State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations, Rhode Island is a state in the New England region of the United States. It is one of the smallest states in the area and has the longest official name considering all the states in the country. Rhode Island is surrounded by Connecticut in the west, Massachusetts to the north and east and the Atlantic Ocean in the south. The state also shares a tiny maritime border with New York. The capital of the state is Providence which is also the most populous city in the state. Rhode Island is often known as the ocean state due to a large number of bays and inlets in the region that covers around 14% of the total area.
Rhode Island was one of the first thirteen colonies that renounced their allegiance to the British Empire. The state boycotted the 1787 convention which gave rise to the Constitution of the United States of America. It was the last state in the country to officially ratify the constitution. Despite, the name, most of the state is located in the US mainland, and the official name of the state derives its name from the conglomeration of four colonial settlements in the region. In recent years, the official name of the state has come under backlash and public scrutiny due to the mention of the term "plantation."
This term according to the citizens of the state signifies slavery and disenfranchisement. Slavery was abolished in the state in 1652, but the laws were not enforced since the early 18th century when it was one of the critical zones for the North American slave trade. Rhode Island also happens to be one of the 19 states in the country to have abolished capital punishment and was the second last state to make prostitution illegal. In a lot of studies, the state has been called one of the safest places in America.
Demographics of Rhode Island
Rhode Island is the smallest state in the country regarding its surface area. As per the last US census, there are around 1.06 million residents in the state which is a 0.3% increase since 2010. Rhode Island has a lot of major populated areas such as Providence in the northwest, along the Blackstone River to Woonsocket. There are five counties in the state but no county government.
The median age in the region is around 39.9 years, and the ratio of males to females in the state rests at 48.5% to 51.5%. The population is pretty diverse in the region with 81% Caucasians, 6.5% African Americans, 3.3% Asians, 2.9% other races and 0.5% of Native North Americans. About 75% of the state identifies with Christian-based faiths, and 5% of the population follows other religious practices. 20% of the population is not affiliated with any kind of religion at all.
Culture and traditions in the region
Like much of New England, Rhode Island follows a tradition of clam chowder. One of the major culinary traditions in the region is the clam cake which is a deep-fried ball of dough with bits of clams inside. The official drink of the state is coffee milk which a concoction prepared by mixing milk and coffee syrup. This unique coffee syrup was invented in Rhode Island and is available at almost all major supermarkets in the state.
Rhode Island has often been depicted in popular cultures, most notably Seth MacFarlane’s parody of the state in his show Family Guy. The show is based in a fictional city in the state of Rhode Island where lots of cultural symbols and other state locations are mentioned.
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