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5 Fun Facts About June 27 In Rhode Island History

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

1. On June 27, 1778, the Battle of Rhode Island took place during the American Revolutionary War. American forces under the command of General John Sullivan and French forces under the command of Count Rochambeau tried to drive the British out of the state. Although the British held their ground, the battle encouraged the Americans and French to continue their cooperation.

2. The first Newport Jazz Festival began on June 27, 1954, at Newport's Freebody Park. The festival was organized by jazz aficionado and socialite Elaine Lorillard, and it quickly became one of the most famous jazz festivals in the world. Over the years, it has featured performances by such legendary artists as Miles Davis, Duke Ellington, Thelonious Monk, and Ella Fitzgerald.

3. On June 27, 1969, the famous Newport Bridge was opened to traffic. The bridge, also known as the Claiborne Pell Bridge, spans the East Passage of Narragansett Bay and connects Newport with Jamestown. It is one of the longest suspension bridges in the United States, and its distinctive design has become a symbol of Rhode Island.

4. Rhode Island established its first state income tax on June 27, 1971, under the administration of Governor Frank Licht. The tax was controversial, as many residents saw it as an infringement on their economic freedom. However, proponents argued that it was necessary to fund important state programs.

5. On June 27, 2013, a historic meeting took place at the Rhode Island State House. Governor Lincoln Chafee and House Speaker Gordon Fox met with tribal leaders from the Narragansett Indian Tribe to discuss the possibility of opening a casino in the state. The meeting was significant because the Narragansetts had been trying to establish a casino in Rhode Island for years, but had faced opposition from the state government.
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