Slavery and its Legacy in South Kingstown


  1. First contacts between Narragansetts and Europeans, c. 1636-1676
  2.  King Philip’s War, c. 1675-1676
  3. The Narragansett Planters and the era of legal state-sanctioned slavery c. 1636-1800
  4. The Era of Interconnected North-South Economies, c. 1800-1875
  5. The Revisionist Era, c. 1875-1925
  6. The Revisionist Legacy, c. 1925-present
  7. Towards a New Understanding, c. 1995-present
  8. Online Resources

*Where possible, entries are linked to full text editions.


*Arnold, James N. The Records of the Proprietors of the Narragansett: Otherwise Called the Fones Record. Bowie, Md: Heritage Books, 2002. Channing, Edward. The Narragansett Planters: A Study of Causes. , 2013.

Boissevain, Ethel. The Narragansett People. Phoenix, Ariz.: Indian Tribal Series, 1975. 

Bossy, Kathleen, and Mary Keane. Lost South Kingstown: With a History of Ten of its Early Villages. Kingston, RI: Pettaquamscutt Historical Society, 2004. 

*Channing, Edward. The Narragansett Planters: A Study of Causes. , 2013. , Originally published c. 1886

*Cole, J R. History of Washington and Kent Counties, Rhode Island: Including Their Early Settlement and Progress to the Present Time ; a Description of Their Historic and Interesting Localities ; Sketches of Their Towns and Villages ; Portraits of Some of Their Prominent Men, and Biographies of Many of Their Representative Citizens. Salem, Mass.: Higginson Book Co., 1993. Originally published 1889.

Geake, Robert A. History of the Narragansett Tribe of Rhode Island. Place of publication not identified: The History Press, 2012. 
Guasco, Michael. Slaves and Englishmen: Human Bondage in the Early Modern Atlantic World. Place of publication not identified: Univ. of Pennsylvania Press, 2017. 

Jennings, Francis. The Invasion of America: Indians, Colonialism, and the Cant of Conquest. Chapel Hill: Published for the Omohundro Institute of Early American History and Culture, Williamsburg, Va., by the University of North Carolina Press, 2010. 

Martin, John F. Profits in the Wilderness: Entrepreneurship and the Founding of New England Towns in the Seventeenth Century. Chapel Hill: Published for the Institute of Early American History and Culture, Williamsburg, Virginia, by the University of North Carolina Press, 1991.

McBurney, Christian M."Verrazzano Visits the Narragansett Indians in 1524." Small State Big History: the online review of Rhode Island History, January 22, 2021.

McBurney, Christian M, and Christian M. McBurney. A History of Kingston, R.I., 1700-1900: Heart of Rural South County. Kingston, R.I: Pettaquamscutt Historical Society, 2004.

Miller, William D. The Narragansett Planters. Worcester, Massachusetts, U.S.A: Published by the Society, 1934.

Newell, Margaret E. Brethren by Nature: New England Indians, Colonists, and the Origins of American Slavery. Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 2016. 

*Potter, Elisha R. The Early History of Narragansett. Place of publication not identified: S.S. Rider, 1886.

*Rider, Sidney S. The Forgery Connected with the Original Deed from Canonicus and Miantinomi to Roger Williams. Place of publication not identified: publisher not identified, 1895.

*Rider, Sidney S. The Lands of Rhode Island As They Were Known to Caunounicus and Miantunn Omu When Roger Williams Came in 1636: An Indian Map of the Principal Locations Known to the Nahigansets and El Aborate Historical Notes. Washington [District of Columbia: Library of Congress Photoduplication Service, 1989.

Silverman, David J. This Land Is Their Land: The Wampanoag Indians, Plymouth Colony, and the Troubled History of Thanksgiving. S.l.: Bloomsbury, 2020. 

Williams, Roger, Dawn Dove, Sandra Robinson, Lorén M. Spears, Dorothy H. Papp, and Kathleen J. Bragdon. A Key into the Language of America. , 2019. 

KING PHILIP’S WAR, 1675-1676

Calloway, Colin G. After King Philip's War: Presence and Persistence in Indian New England. Hanover, NH: University Press of New England, 1997.

Church, Benjamin, Alan Simpson, and Mary Simpson. Diary of King Philip's War: 1675-76. Chester/Conm: Pequot Pr, 1975.

*Church, Benjamin, Thomas Church, and Samuel G. Drake. The History of King Philip's War: Also of Expeditions against the French and Indians in the Eastern Parts of New-England, in the Years 1689, 1690, 1692, 1696 and 1704 : with Some Account of the Divine Providence Towards Col. Benjamin Church. Whitefish, MT: Kessinger Pub, 2007.

Cronon, William. Changes in the Land. New York: Hill and Wang, 1983.

Delucia, Christine M. Memory Lands: King Philip's War and the Place of Violence in the Northeast. , 2020.

Drake, James D. King Philip's War: Civil War in New England, 1675-1676. Amherst [Mass.: University of Massachussets Press, 1999.

Kawashima, Yasuhide. Igniting King Philip's War: The John Sassamon Murder Trial. Lawrence, Kan: University Press of Kansas, 2001.

Leach, Douglas E. Flintlock and Tomahawk: New England in King Philip's War. Woodstock, VT: Countryman Press, 2009, c. 1958.

Lepore, Jill. The Name of War: King Philip's War and the Origins of American Identity. New York: Vintage Books, 1999.

Schultz, Eric B, and Mike Tougias. King Philip's War: The History and Legacy of America's Forgotten Conflict. , 2017.


See also the resources above on First Contacts between Narragansetts and Europeans, c. 1636-1675.

Bartlett, Irving H. From Slave to Citizen: The Story of the Negro in Rhode Island. Providence: Published by the Urban League of Rhode Island, 1972. 

Bridenbaugh, Carl. Fat Mutton and Liberty of Conscience: Society in Rhode Island, 1636-1690. New York: Atheneum, 1976. 

Browne, Katrina, Katrina Browne, Jude Ray, and Alla Kovgan. Traces of the Trade: a Story from the Deep North. A documentary directed, produced, and written by Katrina Browne ; with co-directors: Alla Kovgan and Jude Ray ; and co-producers: Elizabeth Delude-Dix and Juanita Brown. Cambridge, MA: Ebb Pod Productions, LLC, 2008. 

Coughtry, Jay. The Notorious Triangle: Rhode Island and the African Slave Trade, 1700-1807. Philadelphia: Temple University Press, 1981. 

DeWolf, Thomas N. Inheriting the Trade: A Northern Family Confronts Its Legacy As the Largest Slave Trading Dynasty in U.s. History. Boston: Beacon Press, 2008.

Fitts, Robert K. Inventing New England's Slave Paradise: Master/slave Relations in Eighteenth-Century Narragansett, Rhode Island. New York: Garland Pub, 1998. 

Hardesty, Jared R. Black Lives, Native Lands, White Worlds : a History of Slavery in New England. University of Massachusetts Press, 2019. 

MacSparran, James. A Letter Book and Abstract of Out Services, Written During the Years 1743-1751. by the Revd. James Macsparran ... Ed., with Sketch of the Author & Numerous Notes by the Reverend Daniel Goodwin ... with Portraits. Boston, D.B. Updike, 1899.
McBurney, Christian. "The South Kingstown Town Council Refuses to Free Patience, an Enslaved Woman." Web article on Small State Big History, 2016.  

Melish, Joanne P. Disowning Slavery: Gradual Emancipation and "race" in New England, 1760-1860. Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 1998. 
Pybus, Cassandra. Epic Journeys of Freedom: Runaway Slaves of the American Revolution and Their Global Quest for Liberty. Boston, Mass: Beacon Press, 2007. 

Rappleye, Charles. Sons of Providence: The Brown Brothers, the Slave Trade, and the American Revolution. New York: Simon & Schuster Paperbacks, 2007.
Sweet, John W. Bodies Politic: Negotiating Race in the American North, 1730-1830. Philadelphia: Univ. of Pennsylvania Press, 2006. 

*Updike, Wilkins. History of the Episcopal Church in Narragansett, Rhode Island: Including a History of ... Other Episcopal Churches in the State. Place of publication not identified: Forgotten Books, 2016. 3 volumes. Originally published in New York, 1847. 

Whitfield, Harvey Amani. Blacks on the Border: the Black Refugees in British North America, 1815-1860. Burlington, Vt: Univ. of Vermont Press, 2006. 

Youngken, Richard C. African Americans in Newport: An Introduction to the Heritage of African Americans in Newport, Rhode Island, 1700-1945. Providence, R.I.: Newport Historical Society, 1998.


Beckert, Sven, and Seth Rockman. Slavery's Capitalism: A New History of American Economic Development. , 2018. Print.

Clark-Pujara, Christy. Dark Work: The Business of Slavery in Rhode Island. , 2018. 
Clark-Pujara, Christy. "The Business of Slavery and Anti-Slavery Sentiment: The Case of Rowland Gibson Hazard--An Antislavery 'Negro Cloth' Dealer." Rhode Island History 71: 2, 35-55, Summer-Fall 2013. 

Farrow, Anne, Joel Lang, Jenifer Frank, and Evelyn B. Higginbotham. Complicity: How the North Promoted, Prolonged, and Profited from Slavery. , 2006.
Roediger, David R. The Meaning of Slavery in the North. New York: Garland, 1998.


*Carpenter, Esther B. South-county Neighbors. Boston: Roberts Bros, 1888.

*Earle, Alice M. In Old Narragansett: Romances and Realities. New York: C. Scribners, 1898.  

*Hazard, Thomas R. Recollections of Olden Times: Rowland Robinson of Narragansett. Newport, R.I: Sanborn, 1879.

*Hazard, Thomas R, Rowland G. Hazard, and Rudolph Ruzicka. The Jonny-Cake Papers of "Shepherd Tom": Together with Reminiscences of Narragansett Schools of Former Days. Whitefish, Mont.: Kessinger, 2009. Print. Originally published in Boston, 1915.

*Hazard, Caroline. Thomas Hazard, Son of Robt Call'd College Tom: A Study of Life in Narragansett in the Xviiith Century. Boston: Houghton, Mifflin and Company, 1893.



Growing Up in South County Oral History Interviews

DeWolf, Thomas N, and Sharon L. Morgan. Gather at the Table: The Healing Journey of a Daughter of Slavery and a Son of the Slave Trade. Boston: Beacon Press, 2013.  

Gallas, Kris, and James D. W. Perry. Interpreting Slavery at Museums and Historic Sites. Lanham, Md: Rowman and Littlefield: Published in cooperation with the Tracing Center of Histories and Legacies of Slavery, 2015.
Stokes, Keith W., and Theresa Guzman Stokes. A Matter of Truth: The Struggle for African Heritage & Indigenous People Equal Rights in Providence, Rhode Island (1620-2020). Middletown, RI : Rhode Island Black Heritage Society & 1696 Heritage Group, 2021.


Brown University Center for the Study of Slavery and Justice

Episcopal Diocese of Rhode Island Center for Reconciliation

Growing Up in South County Oral History Interviews

 Historical and Architectural Resources of Narragansett, Rhode Island

Historical and Architectural Resources of South Kingstown, Rhode Island

Narragansett Indian Nation

Native Voices: Social Issues of Rhode Island Tribes


Rhode Island Black Heritage Society

Rhode Island Department of Education Resources on African-American History

Rhode Island Secretary of State’s Themed Collections (includes Primary Source Documents)

Rhode Island Slave History Medallions

Slavery and Its Legacy in Rhode Island: A 2020 Panel Discussion

Thomas R. Hazard ("Shepherd Tom") talk by John Peixinho for the Peace Dale Museum of Art and Culture, 2021

Tomaquag Museum Educational Resource List


University of Rhode Island Diversity initiatives
USA Today Rhode Island Slavery series

Woven in time (description) 2015 video about Salt Pond Preserve Archaeological Site

Woven in time (preview)

Compiled by Jessica Wilson 2020, updated 2021

The South Kingstown Town Council Refuses to Free Patience, an Enslaved Woman