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Narragansett Tribal Lands

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The tribal lands and management area of the Narragansett cover almost nine square miles in Charlestown. They encompass a number of primary historical sites, burial grounds, and buildings related to tribal history and are the center of tribal population and activities. Although the Narragansett were “detribalized” in 1879, when their ancestral lands were sold to the state, and did not reorganize as a community until the 1930s, nowhere else is the continuity of heritage and environment for Rhode Island's Native American population so much in evidence as in Charlestown. Together with other Native American sites such as Fort Ninigret and King Tom Farm, they are an unparalleled cultural resource in the state.

When visiting sites on the tribal lands, it is important to obtain permission from the Tribal Administration Offices, 4375B South County Trail (Route 2). The administration office is also a good place to start a driving tour. Just south of the office, on the west side of Route 2, are the Long House, whose roofline gives it the appearance of a large Quonset hut set atop a stone foundation, and the Health Center (1997, Mark Comeau), a low, shingled structure with heavy stone details.

Writing Credits

William H. Jordy et al.

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