The honour of being the smallest state in the union belongs to Rhode Island. In addition to its small size, the state has a wealth of fascinating facts. As you might expect, driving in Rhode Island is not too difficult. Rhode Island is only 48 miles long in total, from north to south. The state is about 37 miles long from east to west. Just 1,214 square miles make up the entire state. At 1,982 square miles, Delaware is the second-smallest state. There isn’t a single other state that can be compared in terms of size; Connecticut is the smallest, over three times smaller.
Geography of Rhode Island
Rhode Island is very small, but it has more than 400 miles of coastline. The states of Massachusetts to the north and east, Connecticut to the west, and the Atlantic Ocean to the south of the state encircle Rhode Island. The majority of the state is flat, with Jerimoth Hill—the highest point in the region—being around 812 feet above sea level. No matter where you reside in Rhode Island, the ocean is only a 30-minute drive away.
There are two geographical regions in Rhode Island. The Coastal Lowlands are located to the east and south. This is the region of Block Island, a well-known beach holiday spot accessible only by boat. This area’s Narragansett Bay is a vital natural resource and home to thousands of different kinds of fish, plants, and other creatures.
The Eastern New England Upland is located in the state’s northwest section. This terrain consists of hills, lakes, and state parks with forests.
History of Rhode Island
One of the original 13 colonies, Rhode Island is also known as the “Ocean State.” It was the first colony to break away from English King George III. It was the last to become a state, nevertheless. The official date of Rhode Island’s statehood is May 29, 1790, but it was first established as a colony in 1636. During the colonial era, Newport, Rhode Island, was a significant shipping harbour. Another fascinating historical fact is that Rhode Island was the last state to ratify the United States Constitution because it first declined to take part in its drafting and preferred the Articles of Confederation.
Wildlife in Rhode Island
Because of its closeness to the water, the state is home to a diverse range of birds. It’s a veritable haven for birdwatchers. Great Egrets, Common Terns, Ospreys, and many species of hawks are just a few of the birds you might observe. And the list goes on and on. More than 400 kinds of birds call Rhode Island home. American robins, woodpeckers, goldfinches, sparrows, and owls are the most frequent birds seen there.
Keep a look out because harbour porpoises, dolphins, and whales—including fin, humpback, and blue whales—have all been spotted off the coast.
Unsurprisingly, the state’s waterways are home to a wide variety of fish species and other marine life. Freshwater fish like alewives, shad, trout, salmon, sturgeon, catfish, and carp may be seen. The region is a seafood lover’s paradise with its abundance of lobsters, crabs, scallops, prawns and mussels. Sharks, including bull sharks, dog sharks, makos, and great white sharks, are also frequently seen swimming in the Atlantic Ocean near the state boundaries.
There are other “official animals” in Rhode Island as well. The Harbour Seal is the official state mammal. The Rhode Island Red chicken is the official state bird. The striped bass is the official fish of the state.
Despite its diminutive size, Rhode Island boasts an abundance of marine life and is very accessible by car. Rhode Island is a compact state with a lot to offer, including a rich colonial past and a beachy atmosphere.