Welcome to the birthplace of religious freedom in the United States. Roger Williams, fleeing religious persecution in England and Massachusetts Bay Colony, founded Providence here in 1636. The original inhabitants, the Narragansett and Wampanoag, have lived in this area for thousands of years. They taught the early settlers much about living here on the shores of what was once a great saltwater cove. Later, Providence bustled with maritime trade and played a pivotal role in the Industrial Revolution.
We invite you to explore this history and reflect on Williams's vision of Liberty of Conscience as you enjoy the memorial and Providence.
Rhode Island State House
See the home of the state's General Assembly, one of the largest marble domes in the world, and the 1663 Rhode Island Charter.
Walk along the river and discover year-round public art and cultural events.
Roger Williams National Memorial
Discover the Roger Williams story and begin your exploration of Providence here.
First Baptist Church in America
Visit the meeting house of the oldest Baptist congregation in America, which was gathered by Roger Williams in 1638.
John Brown House Museum
Explore our nation's early social and cultural
history at the Rhode Island Historical Society
Tour the campus of one of the country's oldest universities.
The Old State House
Stand where Rhode Island declared its independence on May 4, 1776, two months before the rest of the colonies.
Take in the panoramic view of Providence from the Roger Williams statue that marks his final resting place.
Memorial Visitor Center
For almost 300 years, this building has witnessed the growth and transformation of Providence.