The New England Colonies

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How was Rhode Island founded?

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Rhode Island was founded in 1636 by Roger Williams after Williams was banished from the Massachusetts Bay Colony for opposing the intolerant views of the Puritans. As an early abolitionist, Williams believed in religious freedom, a separation of church and state, and a more tolerant view to the American natives, particularly in regards to their right to their own land.

It was his dealings with the natives that resulted in him and like-minded individuals purchasing land from the Narragansett Indians and building a new colony founded on their ideas of religious freedom and tolerance. Providence Plantation, as it was originally called, consisting of the islands Patience, Prudence, and Hope, became a safe haven for many different denominations including Anglicans, Quakers, Jews, Seventh Day Adventists, and Baptists.

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