1. Rhode Island Ratifies the U.S. Constitution: On December 19, 1790, Rhode Island ratified the US Constitution, becoming the 13th state to do so. The tiny state had long opposed joining the union, and was the last of the original thirteen colonies to ratify.
2. Rhode Island establishes Constitutional government: On December 19, 1842, Rhode Island finally established a constitutional government after years of conflict between the Federalist Party and the Democratic-Republicans. The state's constitution was modeled after the US Constitution and granted universal male suffrage.
3. Rhode Island gives women the right to vote: On December 19, 1917, Rhode Island became the fourth state to give women the right to vote in state elections, following in the footsteps of Wyoming, Colorado, and Utah.
4. Construction begins on the Newport Bridge: On December 19, 1966, construction began on the Newport Bridge, which spans the Narragansett Bay and connects Newport to Jamestown. The bridge was completed in 1968 and is now an iconic landmark of the state.
5. Rhode Island celebrates its first same-sex marriages: On December 19, 2013, Rhode Island celebrated its first same-sex marriages after Governor Lincoln Chafee signed a law permitting it earlier that year. The state had previously recognized civil unions for same-sex couples, but the law was seen as a major win for LGBTQ rights in the state.
5 Fun Facts About December 19 In Rhode Island History
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