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Andiamo! Italians Make Their Mark in Rhode Island. Rhode Island has the highest population of Italian Americans per capita in the United States, according to the most recent American Community Survey estimate. The new exhibition at the State Archives showcases a variety of cultural artifacts and historical manuscripts to celebrate the culture and growth of the Italian American community in Rhode Island beginning in the late 19th century.

6/20/19, 6:43 PM

The documents in this online exhibition tell two important stories about activism in Rhode Island in the 1850s-1880s. One is the story of the Black Americans, from Rhode Island and throughout the Union, who came forward to serve in the 14th Rhode Island Heavy Artillery (Colored). The other is the story of these same Americans’ struggles on the home front- for equal access to education, for the right to marry someone of another race, and for the end of all discrimination “on account of race, color or previous condition of servitude.” By taking up arms and taking individual action, the African American community in Rhode Island actively shaped the fight for freedom and equality in Civil War era Rhode Island.Below you can view poignant letters from men seeking to enlist and serve in the 6th Rhode Island Regiment, one of the first proposed “colored” regiments in the Union Army. You can also view petitions and letters that activists in Rhode Island wrote to their General Assembly, fighting for equal rights.

8/16/19, 8:16 PM

Count Me In!, November 7, 2019-March 2020

5/13/19, 1:04 PM

For the Record: 150 Years of Big Ideas in Little Rhody, December 2018-February 2019

8/16/19, 8:16 PM

Fun In Little Rhody, 2014

8/16/19, 8:16 PM

History's Stories, Today's Storytellers, Winter 2024

4/22/24, 7:17 PM

The exhibit includes 19th and 20th century ballots and ballot readers, including the Mctammany vote tabulator which used player piano technology to record votes; and the long-standing Shoup Lever Voting Machine which spawned the term "master lever," Also on view are original 17th century documents including election results and the earliest legislation providing for proxy and absentee voting.

8/16/19, 8:16 PM

Laboring for Justice: Labor Activism in Rhode Island features documents and artifacts related to the labor movement in RI – including petitions to address child labor laws, factory hours, and items related to the Saylesville Strike of 1934.

8/16/19, 8:16 PM

In Over There, Over Here, archival documents tell the story of everyday Rhode Islanders enlisted to serve in the armed forces and those who supported the war effort at home. For example, within two months of the U.S. declaration of war on Germany, over 50,000 Rhode Island men had registered to serve in the armed forces. For the first time, women, too, were given the opportunity to enlist. The Navy and Marine Corps designated women as Yeomen; in the Army women served in the Nurse and Signal Corps.

8/16/19, 8:16 PM

The documents on display in this online collection help tell the story of Rhode Island's unique role in the drafting and ratification of the U.S. Constitution. Rhode Island was the only state not to send delegates to the Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia in May of 1787. When asked to hold a state convention to ratify the Constitution, the Rhode Island General Assembly chose to put the ratification question to a popular vote. On March 24, 1788, Rhode Island's "freemen" cast their ballots in the only state-wide popular vote held on the Constitution. The result of that elections are available in this collection as are the Journals from the Conventions of March and May 1790. Collectively, these documents showcase the dynamic history of Rhode Island's contribution.

8/16/19, 8:16 PM

RI's Revolutionary Communities, 2024

5/2/24, 1:36 PM

The Gaspee Raiders: Pirates or Patriots, May-July 2018

8/16/19, 8:16 PM

Undefeated: South Providence Community Oral History Project recordings, 2022

3/18/22, 4:23 PM

The new exhibit uses historic maps, photographs, and other archival documents to illustrate how bodies of water have transformed from colonial thoroughfares to the civic gathering spaces they are today.

1/25/19, 3:59 PM

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