Online Encyclopedia

WARWICK

Online Encyclopedia
Originally appearing in Volume V28, Page 341 of the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.
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WARWICK, a township of Kent county, Rhode Island, U.S.A., about 5 M. S. of Providence, on the W. side of Narragansett Bay (here called Providence river) and crossed by the Pawtuxet river, which is in its lower course a part of the township's northern boundary. Pop. (18go) 17,761; (1900) 21,316, of whom 7792 were foreign-born; (1910 census) 26,629. The township is crossed by the New York, New Haven & Hartford railway, and electric lines serve most of its twenty-seven rather scattered villages. The larger villages are: on the river, Pontiac, Natick, River Point (at the junction of the two upper branches of the Pawtuxet), Phoenix, Centreville and Crompton; on Greenwich Bay, Apponaug and Warwick; and on Providence river, Shawomet, Warwick Neck, Oakland Beach, Buttonwoods, Conimicut and Long Meadow, which are summer resorts. Water power is provided by the Pawtuxet river, and much cotton and some woollen and print goods are manufactured. The value of the factory product in 1905 was $7,051,971 (17.1% more than in 1900); of the total, nine-tenths was the value of textile products. Warwick, originally called Shawomet (Shawmut), its Indian name, was settled in 1643 by Samuel Gorton (q.v.) and a few followers. Gorton quarrelled with the Indians, was carried off to Boston, was tried there for heresy, was convicted, and was imprisoned; was released with orders to leave the colony in March 1644, went to England, and under the patronage of the earl of Warwick returned to his settlement in 1648 and renamed it in honour of the earl. In 1647 the settlement entered into a union with Providence, Newport and Portsmouth under the Warwick (or Williams) charter of 1644, but during 1651—1654 Warwick and Providence were temporarily separated from the other two towns. Warwick was the birthplace of General Nathanael Greene.
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