Tiverton is a town in Newport County, eastern Rhode Island, that borders Massachusetts.
Originally founded in 1694, Tiverton has since grown from what was originally mostly a farming community into a picturesque summer resort and residential area. Much of the town is located along a granite ridge which runs in a north-south direction, rising approximately 170 feet in elevation from the bay. A large section of exposed granite can be observed at the highway cut for Route 24, near the Main Road interchange. Tiverton was originally incorporated in 1694, as part of the Massachusetts Bay Colony. In 1746, in the final settlement of a long colonial boundary dispute between Rhode Island and Massachusetts, Tiverton was annexed to Rhode Island by Royal Decree (together with its fellow towns along the eastern shore of Narragansett Bay, Barrington, Bristol and Little Compton, and the town of Cumberland, to the north of Providence). Tiverton was then incorporated as a town of Rhode Island, in 1747. Until that same year, Tiverton controlled the area of East Freetown, Massachusetts, as an outpost. The boundary settlement of 1746 had put East Freetown in Massachusetts, and in 1747 it was purchased by Freetown, Massachusetts.
Men from the Tiverton outpost took part in the Battle of Freetown, on May 25, 1778, during the Revolutionary War. For about three years of that war, December 1776 – late 1779, Rhode Island proper (also known as Aquidneck Island, historically) was occupied by the British. During this time, Tiverton was a refuge for Americans fleeing this occupation, and a mustering place for Colonial forces, gathering to drive away the British. (The occupying forces eventually were withdrawn strategically, as General Clinton marshalled his forces for the 1780 British invasion of South Carolina.)
In its early days, Tiverton was chiefly a farming community with some fishing and boat construction. Until 1900 the manufacture of menhaden oil, a fish derivative, was one of the primary industrial pursuits. Cotton and woolen mills were established as early as 1811, when Colonel Joseph Durfee established a spinning mill at Cook Pond, in what it now the city of Fall River, Massachusetts.
In 1856, the northern part of the town was set apart from Tiverton, and re-named Fall River, Rhode Island, by the Rhode Island General Assembly. Then, on March 1, 1862, in a decision made by the United States Supreme Court, both Fall Rivers were made part of Massachusetts and the state boundary was placed in its current location near State Avenue.
Mark's Stadium is a former soccer stadium located in North Tiverton, Rhode Island. During the 1920s and early 1930s it was the home of Fall River Marksmen, one of the era’s most successful soccer teams. It is one of the earliest examples of a soccer-specific stadium in the United States. After the demise of the Marksmen, the stadium was used as a home ground by other local teams, most notably Fall River F.C. and Ponta Delgada S.C..
Tiverton is located on the eastern shore of Narragansett Bay, across the Sakonnet River from Aquidneck Island (also known as the Island of Rhode Island). Together with the adjacent town of Little Compton, the area is disconnected from the rest of the state of Rhode Island. The northern portion of the town is located on Mount Hope Bay. The northern portion of greater Tiverton is North Tiverton, Rhode Island. You can also reach Tiverton by traveling west of the town of Westport and south of the city of Fall River located in Massachusetts.
- RIPTA, +1 401 781-9400, . Services across all of Rhode Island. Rates: One-Way: $1.75, Transfer: $0.50, One-Day Pass: $5.00.
- T.F. Green International Airport 200 Post Road, Warwick, RI 02886, +1 888 268-7222, , in Warwick.
Chase-Cory House in Tiverton, RI
- Chase-Cory House, 3908 Main Rd., Tiverton, RI 02878 +1 401 624-2096. Open: May-September, 2pm - 4:30pm. Historical building with special exhibits throughout the season. Located in Tiverton 4-Corners National Register Historic District. Built in the late 17th or early 18th century. This 3/4 cape with gambrel roof, now owned by the Tiverton Historical Society, was home to whaling captains and their families, descendants of one of the first of twenty seven freemen listed as original residents of Tiverton. The house and grounds retain many features original to a Colonial village farm including a corn-crib and wash house. Special exhibits throughout the season.
- Fort Barton, Highland Road, +1 401 625-6700. Open: year round, sunrise to sunset. An authentic Revolutionary War redoubt, it was the troop staging area for the invasion of Aquidneck Island and Newport and the eventual Battle of Rhode Island in 1778. Three miles of trails and an observation tower.The park is crowned by a 30 foot high observation tower offering panoramic views of the Sakonnet River, Mount Hope Bay and Portsmouth and Bristol shorelines. Over 3 miles of trails are well maintained and carefully constructed stairs allow easy travel up and over steep hills. Beyond, the trail network takes hikers through the woods and alongside a stream.
Four Corners Art Center in Tiverton, RI
- Four Corners Arts Center, 3852 Main Road, +1 401 624-2600, . In the historic Soule-Seabury House, built about 1800 and has over an acre of landscaped grounds used for exhibits, concerts, outdoor dance, sculpture, theater, and special events.
- Ruecker Wildlife Refuge, Seapowet Ave., +1 401 949-5454. Open: daily, sunrise to sunset. 48 acres and with 1.5 mile trails winding through it, the refuge is home to a variety of animal and plant life. A 50 acre parcel of woods and salt marsh with trails and fine views of the Sakonnet River. The refuge has blinds for observing and photographing nature. Great Egrets, Snowy Egrets, and Glossy Ibis are among the birds that frequent the marsh. Jack's Island, a peninsula that extends into the Sakonnet River, is home to breeding Ospreys.
While in Tiverton, one can visit Fogland Beach, which provides an excellent windsurfing area. You can also enjoy a wonderful view of the Portsmouth shoreline and Sakonnet River from the beach. Grinnell's Beach is also worth visiting. The Seapowet Marsh and Point Fishing Area has various coastal habitats and is popular for shellfishing. Shopping can be enjoyed at the Grand Central Shopping Center.
- Tiverton Four Corners, Main Road, . A center for antiques, fine art, decorative crafts, and cozy shops in a quaint New England village of 18th century buildings. On the National Register of Historic Places since 1974.
- Barcello’s, 1214 Stafford Road, +1 401 624-6649. Just off of Stafford Road, Barcello’s is part family restaurant, part lounge whose menu consists of a combination of American and Portuguese dishes.
- Evelyn’s Drive-In, 2335 Main Road,+1 401 624-3100. Summer, Monday-Thursday 11:30am – 8:30pm, Friday-Sunday 11:30am – 9:00pm. Evelyn’s is the local clam shack, serving classic seafood dishes, such as batter-fried belly clams, clam cakes, and chowder. Located on the water at Nanaquaket Pond, Evelyn’s Drive-In offers patio seating that provides its customers with a waterside view while they eat.
- Four Corners Grille, 3841 Main Road,+1 401 624-1510. Wednesday-Friday 11am – 9pm, Saturday-Sunday 8am – 9pm. A family restaurant in Historic Tiverton Four Corners that serves traditional American cuisine.
Gray's Ice Cream in Tiverton, RI
- Gray’s Ice Cream, 16 East Road, +1 401 624-4500. Kitchen open 6:30am – 8pm. Located at Historic Tiverton Four Corners, Gray’s is an award-winning ice cream shop, voted Best in Rhode Island, that serves homemade ice cream in over 40 different flavors, including seasonal flavors such as pumpkin and eggnog.
- Boat House (Waterfront Dining), 227 Schooner Drive (From 24 North take the exit that says RT 138 N for North Tiverton. Make a left onto rt 138. Go past Sakonnet Bay Manor and the Villages will be on your left hand side right at the bend in the road. Make a left into the Villages. Follow Schooner Drive all the way down to the water.), ☎ 401-624-6300, . The Boat House is the quintessential seafood spot taken to a new level of innovation and excellence. Located within the gates of the Villages on Mount Hope Bay condominium complex, enjoy outdoor and indoor seating with picturesque views of the Sakonnet River and as you sample some of the best local seafood in New England. The cuisine boasts a menu of fresh seafood and local produce, taking its cue from the picturesque backdrop of the Sakonnet River.
- Ferolbink Farms Bed & Breakfast, 993 Punkateest Neck Road, 401-624-4107.
Other Rhode Island cities you might want to visit:
- Bristol Most noted for its historic 4th of July parade and sea-side scenery.
- Newport A beautiful city most noted for its historical mansions.
- Providence The biggest city in Rhode Island and the state capital and cultural center.