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East Providence, Rhode Island
|City of East Providence|
World War I Memorial and Taunton Plaza
|• Mayor||Roberto DaSilva|
|• City Council||Robert Britto: Ward 1 (Council President)|
Robert Rodericks: At-Large (Council Vice-President): Ward 1
Anna M. Sousa: Ward 2
Nathan Cahoon: Ward 3
Ricardo Mourato: Ward 4
|• Total||16.61 sq mi (43.01 km2)|
|• Land||13.28 sq mi (34.41 km2)|
|• Water||3.32 sq mi (8.60 km2)|
|Elevation||62 ft (19 m)|
|• Density||3,584.61/sq mi (1,384.00/km2)|
|Time zone||UTC−5 (Eastern)|
|• Summer (DST)||UTC−4 (Eastern)|
02914, 02915, 02916
|GNIS feature ID||1219590|
East Providence is a city in Providence County, Rhode Island, United States. The population was 47,139 at the 2020 census, making it the fifth-largest city in the state.
East Providence is located between the Providence and Seekonk Rivers on the west and the Seekonk area of Massachusetts on the east. According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 16.6 square miles (43 km2), of which, 13.4 square miles (35 km2) of it is land and 3.2 square miles (8.3 km2) of it (19.33%) is water.
The following villages are located in East Providence:
In 1641, the Plymouth Colony purchased from the Indians a large tract of land which today includes the northern half of East Providence (from Watchemoket to Rumford), Rehoboth, Massachusetts, Seekonk, Massachusetts, and part of Pawtucket. Four years later, John Brown of Plymouth bought a considerably smaller piece of land from the Indians, which today comprises the southern part of East Providence (Riverside), Barrington, and a small part of Swansea. Finally, in 1661, Plymouth completed the "North Purchase" from which Attleboro, North Attleboro, and Cumberland were later formed. Over the whole the authorities gave the name "Rehoboth". The center of this large settlement, which is sometimes referred to as "Old Rehoboth", is within the borders of modern East Providence. In 1812, the western half of Old Rehoboth was set off as a separate township called Seekonk, Massachusetts. Old Rehoboth's town center now became the heart of Old Seekonk. Finally, in 1862, the western part of Old Seekonk was ceded to Rhode Island and incorporated as East Providence.
Beginning around 1900 and continuing until the onset of the Great Depression in 1930, large numbers of Portuguese immigrants and descendants from Providence, Fall River, New Bedford, and Portugal settled in East Providence. By 1905, there were over 400 Portuguese in the town, the third-highest in the state. The Portuguese, like other ethnic groups, were drawn to East Providence primarily by the lure of jobs. Many employment opportunities were available in the Watchemoket area, where numerous immigrants settled.
In decades preceding the Civil War, Watchemoket Point was little more than a farming and fishing area with perhaps a few hundred residents. Watchemoket was situated directly across from the thriving city of Providence and thus benefited from the expansion of that community. More importantly, two bridges across the Seekonk River gave easy access to Watchmemoket. By the 1860s, tolls were no longer being charged to cross the Washington and Central Bridges, giving further stimulus to the growth of Watchemoket and the transformation of the village from a sleepy fishing area to the vital core of East Providence in 1862. Perhaps the first businesses to come to Watchemoket were inns built to service the large numbers of people coming through. The residents of Watchemoket also had their own library by the early 1870s. At first the organizers named it Ladies Library Association, but in 1885 they changed the named to Watchemoket Free Public Library. Already the commercial and population center of East Providence, by the mid-1880s, Watchemoket next became the political center as well. The town hall was moved from Rumford to the heart of the community, so it was more accessible. They purchased a lot on Taunton Avenue for $11,500 and erected a two-story brick building which opened in 1889. That same year the East Providence Police Department opened its headquarters in the town hall.
By 1922, Watchemoket Square was the heart of downtown East Providence, supporting over 100 businesses including two department stores, two restaurants, five barber shops, bakeries, and blacksmith shops.Ingraham Hall was village's centerpiece, featuring a concert hall on the second floor and shopping on the first. Buffalo Bill's Wild West Show performed at Ingraham Hall when it came to Rhode Island. An Industrial National Bank branch opened in 1923 with much publicity. Piers lined Narragansett Bay; in 1880, 473 ships docked at Watchemoket unloading 256,000 tons of coal.
However, the neighborhood began a decline when the Washington Bridge drew traffic south of the area in 1927.Then the Hurricane of 1938 demolished the local oyster population. In 1955 Interstate 195 was built through the heart of Watchemoket, resulting in the northern half of the square to be demolished. Buildings which remain include the bank (now a comedy club), St. Mary's Episcopal Church, and Oddfellows' Hall.
For some time after the incorporation of the town in 1862, the area around the old "Ring of the Green" was referred to as East Providence Center. The official town hall was located here until 1889, as were several churches. Moreover, the village was the population center of East Providence, containing many farms and mills along the Ten Mile River. Many people migrated from East Providence Center to the new center at Watchemoket.
From the time of the Wannamoisett purchase in 1645 to the Civil War, the shore land from Watchemoket to Bullocks Point had remained a sparsely settled fishing and farming area. When East Providence was incorporated, no more than a few hundred of its residents made the coastal village their home. The white settlers had first learned of the plentiful supply of shellfish in the area from the Wampanoag Indians. More than two centuries later, the waters of Narragansett Bay, which washed the shores of Wannamoisett, still contained an abundant supply of edible sea treasures. Clams, quahogs, and oysters were harvested by Wannamoisett residents and sold in Providence. Arnold Medberry, for instance, brought his plow to the shoreline and began picking up clams by the handful. He loaded the shellfish on a cart and easily sold his entire day's catch in Providence. At that time, Medberry and his neighbors were referred to as "clamdiggers", a derogatory term comparable to the pejorative hayseed.
Already, by the early nineteenth century, individuals had begun to build summer homes, causing the population to double to about 500–600. During that time period, Cedar Grove, Lewis Station, Chimney Corners, Peck's Corner, Pleasant Bluffs, Sabin's Point, Sherman's Station, and Pomham were developed. New resort facilities were built, such as the Pomham House. Numbers of roads were lined with trees and houses, Christian churches were formed, a library was built, and the Narragansett Engine Company was formed in 1878. By that time, the residents were no longer dismissed as "clamdiggers", but regarded as townspeople.
While many transactions were taking place, Charles I. D. Looff came to Riverside. He was a wood carver for a furniture business in New York, and spent spare time in his basement carving wooden horses as a hobby. After long years of hard work, he produced the first steam-powered carousel and sold it to Crescent Park. He operated the carousel and designed a summer recreation area. By the early 1900s, New Englanders recognized Crescent Park as the leading amusement park in the region. Looff accomplished fantastic achievements and, after his death, his family continued to operate Crescent Park. The park closed in the 1970s and the land was used for condominiums, apartments and single-family homes. The Crescent Park Looff Carousel still remains.
Between 2003 and 2020, the East Providence Waterfront Commission and Planning Department has worked to redevelop old industrial sites and brownfields along most of East Providence's 14-mile coastline on the Seekonk River as mixed use residential, commercial, and light industrial zones.
The City of East Providence is governed by an elected mayor and a five-member city council, with the mayor and counselors elected every four years. City council members are elected one each from four wards and one elected at-large.
The mayor is both the ceremonial leader of the city and the chief executive officer. The mayor runs the daily operations of the city, enforces the charter and ordinances of the city and appoints all department heads except the city clerk. The current mayor of East Providence is Roberto DaSilva, who took office on January 9, 2019.
Up until January 9, 2019, the day-to-day operations were managed by a professional city manager appointed by the city council, and the mayor was the president of the city council, acting ceremonially.
The city council sets all city ordinances, sets the budget of the city (with recommendation from the mayor) and provides legislative oversight for city operations.
The city council elects a council president and council vice-president to preside over meetings. The city council also appoints the city clerk.
Up until 2019, The city council served two-year terms, and the city council oversaw the entire city government under a council-manager system.
As of 2019 [update] , the members of the East Providence City Council are:
The City of East Providence has a municipal court, which hears cases regarding violations of municipal ordinances, housing code violations and minor traffic violations. The city also has a probate court, which handles estates, name changes, guardianships and related matters. Judges for both courts are appointed by the mayor with confirmation by the city council for a term of two years.
The city also has an elected school committee, elected for two year terms by the same ward system as the city council. The school committee has broad authority to manage the school system, including setting all school system policies, setting the school system budget (within the general appropriation by the city, state and federal government) as well as selecting and overseeing the Superintendent of Schools.
The city has an appointed library board of trustees which governs the city's library system and various other appointed governing and advisory boards and commissions.
|U.S. Decennial Census|
As of the censusof 2000, there were 48,688 people, 20,530 households, and 12,851 families residing in the city. The population density was 3,632.1 people per square mile (1,401.8/km2). There were 21,309 housing units at an average density of 1,589.6 per square mile (613.5/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 86.49% White, 5.02% African American, 0.46% Native American, 1.15% Asian, 0.05% Pacific Islander, 2.80% from other races, and 4.03% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.89% of the population.
There were 20,530 households, out of which 27.1% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 46.3% were married couples living together, 12.7% had a female householder with no husband present, and 37.4% were non-families. 32.4% of all households were made up of individuals, and 14.6% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.33 and the average family size was 2.99.
In the city, the population was spread out, with 21.7% under the age of 18, 7.4% from 18 to 24, 29.4% from 25 to 44, 22.6% from 45 to 64, and 18.9% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 40 years. For every 100 females, there were 86.8 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 82.6 males.
The median income for a household in the city was $39,108, and the median income for a family was $48,463. Males had a median income of $34,342 versus $26,423 for females. The per capita income for the city was $19,527. About 6.3% of families and 8.6% of the population were below the poverty line, including 10.7% of those under age 18 and 11.0% of those aged 65 or over.
The population has large immigrant communities from Portugal, the Azores, Madeira and Cape Verde.
East Providence has 13 public and 5 non-public schools:
Rhode Island, officially the State of Rhode Island, is a state in the New England region of the United States. It is the smallest U.S. state by area and the seventh-least populous, but it is also the second-most densely populated behind New Jersey. The state takes its name from the island of the same name; however, most of the state is on the mainland. The state has land borders with Connecticut to the west, Massachusetts to the north and east, and the Atlantic Ocean to the south via Rhode Island Sound and Block Island Sound. It also shares a small maritime border with New York. Providence is the state capital and most populous city in Rhode Island.
Bristol County is a county in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. As of the 2020 census, the population was 579,200. The shire town is Taunton. Some governmental functions are performed by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, others by the county, and others by local towns and cities. See administrative divisions of Massachusetts. The property deed records are kept in Taunton, Attleboro, Fall River, and New Bedford.
Mansfield is a town in Bristol County, Massachusetts, United States. As of the United States 2010 Census, the town population is 23,184. Mansfield is in the south-southwest suburbs of Boston and is also close to Providence, Rhode Island. The village of Mansfield Center is located in the town. The town is twinned with Mansfield in Nottinghamshire, England.
Rehoboth is a historic town in Bristol County, Massachusetts, United States. Established in 1643, Rehoboth is one of the oldest towns in Massachusetts. The population was 11,608 at the 2010 census. Rehoboth is a mostly rural, suburban community with many historic sites including 53 historic cemeteries.
Seekonk is a town in Bristol County, Massachusetts, United States, on the Massachusetts border with Rhode Island. It was incorporated in 1812 from the western half of Rehoboth. The population was 14,371 at the 2016 census. Until 1862, the town of Seekonk also included what is now the City of East Providence, Rhode Island, as well as the section of the City of Pawtucket, Rhode Island east of the Blackstone River. The land in the western half of the town was given to Rhode Island by the United States Supreme Court as part of a longstanding boundary dispute with Massachusetts.
Swansea is a town in Bristol County in southeastern Massachusetts. It is located at the mouth of the Taunton River, just west of Fall River, 47 miles (76 km) south of Boston, and 12 miles (19 km) southeast of Providence, Rhode Island. The population was 15,865 at the 2010 census.
Cranston, once known as Pawtuxet, is a city in Providence County, Rhode Island, United States. The official population of the city in the 2020 United States Census was 82,934, making it the second largest in the state. The center of population of Rhode Island is located in Cranston. Cranston is a part of the Providence metropolitan area.
Pawtucket is a city in Providence County, Rhode Island, United States. The population was 75,604 at the 2020 census, making the city the fourth-largest in the state. Pawtucket borders Providence and East Providence to the south, Central Falls and Lincoln to the north, and North Providence to the west; to its east-northeast, the city borders the Massachusetts municipalities of Seekonk and Attleboro.
Narragansett is a town in Washington County, Rhode Island, United States. The population was 14,532 at the 2020 census. However, during the summer months the town's population more than doubles to near 34,000. The town is colloquially known as "Gansett". The town of Narragansett occupies a narrow strip of land running along the eastern bank of the Pettaquamscutt River to the shore of Narragansett Bay. It was separated from South Kingstown in 1888 and incorporated as a town in 1901.
Barrington is a suburban, residential town in Bristol County, Rhode Island located approximately 7 miles (11 km) southeast of Providence. It was founded by Congregationalist separatists from Swansea, Massachusetts and incorporated in 1717.
North Providence is a town in Providence County, Rhode Island, United States. The population was 34,114 at the 2020 census.
Riverside is a neighborhood in the city of East Providence in the U.S. state of Rhode Island. Despite not being an incorporated city, Riverside has its own zip code, 02915, and is an acceptable mailing address according to the United States Postal Service. Riverside has a population of approximately 20,000 people.
Rumford is the northern section of the city of East Providence, Rhode Island. The Rumford section of East Providence borders Seekonk, Massachusetts, Pawtucket, Rhode Island, and the Ten Mile River. Rumford has been part of three towns and two states: Rehoboth, Massachusetts, Seekonk, Massachusetts, and East Providence, Rhode Island. It became part of Rhode Island in 1862. Rumford Baking Powder was made in the town at the Rumford Chemical Works and was named after Sir Benjamin Thompson, Count Rumford.
Olneyville is a neighborhood in Providence, Rhode Island bordered by Atwells Avenue to the north, U.S. Route 6 to the south and Rhode Island Route 10 to the east. The Woonasquatucket River runs through the southern portion of the neighborhood. The area is roughly triangular.
Charles I. D. Looff was a German master carver and builder of hand-carved carousels and amusement rides, who immigrated to the United States of America in 1870. Looff built the first carousel at Coney Island in 1876. During his lifetime, he built over 40 carousels, several amusements parks, numerous roller coasters and Ferris wheels, and built California's famous Santa Monica Pier. He became famous for creating the unique Coney Island style of carousel carving.
Crescent Park Looff Carousel, also known as Crescent Park Carousel or more officially as Crescent Park Looff Carousel and Shelter Building, is a National Historic Landmark in East Providence, Rhode Island.
Providence is the capital and most populous city of the U.S. state of Rhode Island. One of the oldest cities in the United States, it was founded in 1636 by Roger Williams, a Reformed Baptist theologian and religious exile from the Massachusetts Bay Colony. He named the area in honor of "God's merciful Providence" which he believed was responsible for revealing such a haven for him and his followers. The city is situated at the mouth of the Providence River at the head of Narragansett Bay.
Norton is a town in Bristol County, Massachusetts, United States, and contains the village of Norton Center. The population was 19,031 at the 2010 census. Home of Wheaton College, Norton hosts the Dell Technologies Championship, a tournament of the PGA Tour held annually on the Labor Day holiday weekend at the TPC Boston golf club.
Crescent Park was a famous amusement park in Riverside, East Providence, Rhode Island from 1886 to 1979. During the park's 93-year run, it entertained millions of New Englanders as well as people from all over the world. The park was famous for its sumptuous Rhode Island Shore Dinners and the beautiful Alhambra Ballroom as well as its enchanting midway.
Bold Point is an area of East Providence, Rhode Island protruding into the Providence River. It was home to Providence Dry Dock and Marine Railway Co. around the turn of the 20th century, and today is home to Bold Point Park.
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|Wikisource has the text of the 1911 Encyclopædia Britannica article East Providence .|