The History of Pawtucket, RI
Founded as a town in 1676 and incorporated as a city in 1886, our Pawtucket goes back 100 years before our nation's celebrated birth in 1776.
Pawtucket's most noted place in American history comes from our famous Samuel Slater and his Slater Mill. Built in 1793 on the Falls of the Blackstone River, the mill was the first commercially successful cotton-spinning mill with a fully mechanized power system in America. 1
But the history of the place goes back to our pioneers and to the Narragansetts as described in 1878 2
"lived and roamed with savage independence over her wooded hills, through her verdant valleys, and along the banks of her crystal streams. These, and adjacent tribes, formed a numerous and powerful people, and had permanent villages in various parts of this eastern territory, and, jealous of their rights, looked with distrust upon the innovations of those early pioneers who had fled from European despotism to work out for themselves homes in these rude wilds, where their anthems and praises might arise to the one God, untrammelled by the decrees of 'God-ordained kings.' Small tracts of land were cleared of their dense forest-growth, - fields, cultivated for the growing of those products barely necessary for sustenance; and thus the early pioneer commenced his settlement, the accomplishment of which was not unattended with the endurance of many hardships. Their wild and untutored neighbors often invaded their fields and villages, destroying the products of the former, and laying in ashes the latter. Among the primitive forest-trees, were the walnut, oak, and wild-chestnut. Narrow trails, in use from time immemorial, led along dense jungles bordering upon swamps, and over the uplands, from village to village, and nation to nation."
Our Historical Places
- Daggett House - 16 Second Drive, - website
- Joseph Spaulding House -30 Fruit Street - see Pawtucket History Research Center
- Modern Diner - 364 East Avenue,
- Slater Mill - 67 Roosevelt Avenue - website - "Named 2009 Editors' Choice for "Best History Escape" in Rhode Island by Yankee Magazine"
- See also: List of Registered Historic Places in Pawtucket on Wapedia Mobile - 49 sites with dates and coordinates (:>)
Our Historical Information Resources
- Pawtucket History Research Center - website
- Pawtucket Library - 13 Summer Street - website
Notes and References
- Wikipedia History Article
- Providence County Index on USGenWeb Project
- History of the State of Rhode Island with Illustrations - 1878 on RootsWeb - extensive multi-page article is free non-commercial resource.
- Historical and Preservation Societies on Rhode Island Historical Records Repositories Directory
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1. Wikipedia Reference
2. RootsWeb article, cited above