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5 Fun Facts About December 1 In Rhode Island History

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

1. Rhode Island became a state: On December 1, 1790, Rhode Island officially became the 13th state to join the United States. After initially voting against the new constitution, the state reconsidered and ratified the document in 1790.

2. First Brown University President Inauguration: On December 1, 1770, James Manning was officially inaugurated as the first president of Brown University, which was then called the College of Rhode Island. Manning played a key role in establishing the university and setting its early course.

3. Founding of the Providence Athenaeum: One of Rhode Island's oldest cultural institutions, the Providence Athenaeum, was founded on December 1, 1836. It is a private library that has been serving the community for nearly two centuries and it still remains a vital center of learning and culture.

4. Newport's 375th Anniversary: On December 1, 2004, the city of Newport celebrated its 375th anniversary. The city was founded in 1639 by English clergyman William Coddington and a group of followers who were seeking religious freedom.

5. Famous Jazz Musician's Birthday: The legendary jazz piano player John Hicks was born in Atlanta, Georgia on December 1, 1941. Hicks was a frequent visitor to Rhode Island and performed many times at venues like the Newport Jazz Festival in the 1990s before his death in 2006.
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