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5 Fun Facts About April 28 In Rhode Island History

---Learn Every Day: RI Today In History Facts Texted Each Day - Text: history ri To: 618-270-4005---

1. In 1636, Roger Williams, the founder of Rhode Island, began his journey to America from England. Williams was a religious dissident who was expelled from the Massachusetts Bay Colony due to his views on religious freedom and separation of Church and State.

2. In 1775, two British naval vessels, the HMS Falcon and the HMS Mercury, arrived in Newport Harbor. The ships were looking for supplies and were met by a group of local militia members who refused to provide them with what they needed. This incident helped to escalate tensions between the colonies and Britain in the early days of the American Revolution.

3. In 1892, the first electric trolley car service began in Providence. The line ran from Olneyville in the western part of the city to nearby Pawtucket. The electric trolley replaced existing horse-drawn carriage services and helped to revolutionize public transportation in the city.

4. In 1960, John F. Kennedy made a campaign stop in Providence during his bid for the presidency. The future president delivered a speech at the Rhode Island State House, where he called for increased investment in education and the creation of a national health insurance program.

5. In 2003, Rhode Island became the first state in the country to make birth-control pills available without a prescription. The law, which was championed by then-Governor Donald Carcieri, allowed pharmacists to dispense the pills after a brief consultation with patients. The move was seen as a victory for reproductive rights advocates in the state and beyond.
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