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Portsmouth Rhode Island Home Improvement



Portsmouth was settled in 1638 as the second settlement in the area. With Anne Hutchinson as leader of the settlement, Portsmouth became the first community founded in the New World by a woman. Its Indian name was Pocasset, and on May 12, 1649, the name of Portsmouth was confirmed. And as original settlement, Portsmouth became part of the original group of settlements which united to form the Colony of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations.

The history of Portsmouth, which was at one time the most populous town in the colony, is rich with the flavor characterizing Rhode Island's early settlements. In fact, it was in Portsmouth that the most daring capture of the Revolutionary War was accomplished. The British Commander-in-Chief, General Richard Prescott, was captured by Rhode Islander, Colonel William Barton in the Overing House, which is, today, located on West Main Road and marked with an historical plaque.

Reflections of Portsmouth's daring and significant past are further evidenced by several other historical landmarks. Founders Brook is marked as the site of the landing of the first settlers from Boston in 1638. This group was spirited under the leadership of John Clark and William Coddington. The Portsmouth Compact, the first instrument for governing as a true democracy, is inscribed on a bronze and stone marker. The little valley known as the Hessian Hole is a reminder of the famous Battle of Rhode Island, likewise, a memorial dedicated to those blacks that fought in the Battle of Rhode Island as the first black regiment to fight for the American Flag, is located in Portsmouth. Located on the corner of East Main Road and Union Street is the Southernmost School, the nation's oldest school, containing antique school desks, school bells and a variety of original textbooks.

Portsmouth is a fully-developed, fully serviced community. Among its features are several public golf courses, a modern motor hotel, antique shops, numerous marinas, and, the Sakonnet Times, a weekly newspaper serving the towns of Portsmouth, Tiverton and Little Compton.

Today, many of the town's working population is employed in private industry, in Portsmouth and nearby communities. The earliest source of income for the townspeople was farming and shipbuilding. However, boat building continues as one of the areas major industries.

Many areas, such as Melville, which was heavily occupied with Naval installations prior to the massive Naval reduction in 1974, have become the sites for the development of commercial, industrial, and recreational facilities. At the Melville small boat basin, for example, a 340-slip, fully serviced marina and boat building complex has replaced what was once a Naval docking facility, and the Navy's first PT - boat training facility.



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