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The capital is The name Rhode Island is of uncertain origin.It originally applied to the island in Narragansett Bay that the Native Americans called Aquidneck Island.The name Aquidneck nevertheless is widely used within the state.Blackstone River and its tributaries drain the northern part of the state.Rhode Island, officially The State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations, constituent state of the United States of America.It was one of the original 13 states and is one of the six New England states.The highest point in the state is The state’s territory includes Block Island, about 10 miles (16 km) south of the mainland, and several islands in Narragansett Bay, including Conanicut, Prudence, and Rhode islands.In order to avoid the confusion that resulted from having the same name for both the island and the state, an attempt was made at the beginning of the 21st century to officially restore the name Aquidneck to the island of Rhode Island, but the effort was unsuccessful.
In addition, Rhode Island’s intimate connection to the sea—including more than 400 miles (640 km) of coastline—is the basis of its nickname, the Ocean State.
Aquidneck’s renaming as Rhode Island (a name that came to be used as shorthand for the whole colony) by the English in 1644 may have come in part from English settlers’ confusion between two foreign sources: Giovanni da Verrazzano’s earlier comparison of Block Island to the Greek island of Rhodes, and the name Roodt Eyland (Red Island), which the Dutch had given to Aquidneck because of its red soil.
Providence Plantations, the first settlement on the mainland, on Narragansett Bay, was named by the minister Roger Williams, founder of the state, who credited Divine Providence with bringing him safely there in 1636.
Its north branch was flooded in the 1920s when the city of Providence built a dam at the village of Kent.
The resulting Scituate Reservoir is now the state’s largest body of fresh water, supplying Providence and its neighbouring communities. The bay has always been Rhode Island’s greatest asset, providing a convenient waterway running two-thirds the length of the state.