Newport (cities, United States)

The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.

Newport (cities, United States)

Newport:1 City (1990 pop. 18,871), seat of Campbell co., N Ky., on the Ohio River opposite Cincinnati and on the east bank of the Licking River opposite Covington; laid out 1791, inc. as a city 1835. Its industries produce wood, food, paper, and steel products; building equipment; and oil and gas. Newport was a station on the Underground Railroad, and Kentucky's only antislavery newspaper was edited there in the 1850s.

2 City (1990 pop. 28,227), seat of Newport co., SE Rhode Island, on Aquidneck (also called Rhode) Island; settled 1639, inc. 1784. A port of entry, the city's economy is tied to its many naval installations. Also important are the tourist industry, educational facilities, fishing, and the manufacture of electrical equipment. Newport hosts yacht races and was the site of the America's Cup races until the early 1980s. Tennis was popularized there; the National Tennis Hall of Fame is in the Newport casino. Jazz and folk festivals, as well as other music and dance fests are held there. The city is the seat of Salve Regina Univ., the U.S. Naval War College, and other naval training schools. Fort Adams State Park is nearby. Newport Bridge (1969) spans the east passage of Narragansett Bay, linking the city with Jamestown.

Founded in 1639, Newport was united (1640) with Portsmouth and then entered (1654) in a permanent federation with Providence and Warwick. Shipbuilding, dating from 1646, and foreign commerce brought pre-Revolutionary prosperity to Newport. In the American Revolution the British occupied the town (1776–79); many buildings were destroyed, most of the citizens moved away, and Newport never regained its former economic prestige. It was replaced in importance by Providence, with which it was joint state capital until 1900.

In the 19th cent., Newport developed as a fashionable resort of the wealthy, and many palatial "cottages" were built. Outstanding tourist attractions from that era are The Breakers, the former summer house of Cornelius Vanderbilt; Belcourt Castle; The Elms; Marble House; and Château-sur-Mer. Cliff Walk and Ocean Drive are known for their spectacular views of the ocean and the coastline.

Of historic interest are the Wanton-Lyman-Hazard House (c.1675; scene of a Stamp Act riot in 1765); the Newport Tower (thought to date from the 17th cent.); Trinity Church (1726); Touro Synagogue (1763), oldest in the country and since 1946 a national historic site; the Redwood Library and Athenaeum (1747); and the brick market house or city hall (1762). Matthew Perry was born in Newport.

See E. Warburton, In Living Memory: A Chronicle of Newport, Rhode Island, 1888–1988 (1988).

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