reveals the stresses and tensions that increased dramatically after 1763 and
threatened the town's cohesion. Here it becomes clear that given Newport's
structure and economic base--given its dependence on the sea--British imperial policy in the decade before the Revolution had a devastating effect.
Rebellious and uncompromising, the town was torn apart over the question
of livelihood vs. loyalty. The American Revolution was a civil war in Newport, Rhode Island. It was stimulated by economic considerations which in
turn created dissension and disorder. The issues were resolved only after a
long and costly war which brought a weakened Newport the independence
it demanded but could no longer enjoy.
The defense of the Viking theory is best summed up by Philip A. Means, The
Newport Tower ( New York, 1942) and Hjalmar P. Holand, America, 1355-1364: A
New Chapter in Pre-Columbian History ( New York, 1946), Part I. Irresistible refutation is provided by W. S. Godfrey, Jr., "The Newport Puzzle", Archaeology, 2
( 1949), 146-49, and "Newport Tower, II," ibid., 3 ( 1950), 82-86, as well as by Samuel Eliot Morison, The European Discovery of America: The Northern Voyages,
A.D. 500-1600 ( New York, 1971), pp. 72-75.
The most detailed study of early Newport (to 1647) is found in A Documentary
History of Rhode Island, ed.
Howard Chapin, 2 vols. ( Providence, 1916, 1919). For a
more recent interpretation of the early years, see Carl Bridenbaugh, Fat Mutton and
Liberty of Conscience ( Providence, 1974).
RICR, 188. The nine original settlers were William Coddington, Nicholas Easton, John Coggeshall, William Brenton, John Clarke, Jeremy Clerke [Clarke], Thomas
Hazard, Henry Hull, and William Dyer.
Coddington angered the unsuspecting Newporters by surreptitiously obtaining an
English patent making him governor of Aquidneck Island and in effect separating
Aquidneck from the rest of the colony. A flurry of protests caused the commission to
be revoked in 1653.
Quoted in Bridenbaugh, Fat Mutton, p. 13.
"Travel Diary of Dr. ", New-York Historical Society Quarterly, 40, No. 1 ( January 1956), 58-60.
Sydney V. James, Colonial Rhode Island: A History ( New York, 1975) p. 240.
George Berkeley to Sir John Percival, Mar. 28, 1729, Redwood Library, Newport.
Howard W. Preston, Rhode Island and the Sea ( Providence, 1932), p. 61.
Bostonians, enraged at Newport's unpatriotic behavior, began to seize Newport vessels,
forcing the Newporters to retaliate in kind. "'The Lord protect Capt. Hughes, they
Questia, a part of Gale, Cengage Learning. www.questia.com
Book title: A Dependent People:Newport, Rhode Island in the Revolutionary Era.
Contributors: Elaine Forman Crane - Author.
Publisher: Fordham University Press.
Place of publication: New York.
Publication year: 1992.
Page number: 6.
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