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Jamestown

Trip Planner USA  /  Rhode Island  /  Jamestown
Jamestown is a town located in Newport County, Rhode Island, in the United States. The population was 5,405 at the 2010 census. Jamestown is situated almost entirely on Conanicut Island, the second largest island in Narragansett Bay.GeographyAccording to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 35.3sqmi, of which, 9.7sqmi of it is land and 25.6sqmi of it is water. The total area is 72.55% water.Rhode Island Route 138 is the only state highway in Jamestown, connecting the town and island to North Kingstown to the west (over the Jamestown Verrazzano Bridge) and Newport to the east (over the Newport Bridge).HistoryFirst inhabitantsHumans arrived in the area about 10,000 to 12,000 years ago, at the end of the last ice age, when they settled near streams and rivers. Ongoing melting of glaciers caused the sea level to rise, covering low-lying areas and eventually filling Narragansett Bay. The rising sea forced humans to higher elevations, and submerged most traces of the earliest inhabitants. The oldest human artifacts found on Conanicut Island date from around 3000 BC.Europeans arriveIn 1524, the Italian navigator Giovanni da Verrazzano and his crew visited Narragansett Bay. In 1636 or 1637, "Dutch Island" was used by fur traders. In 1638 the English made arrangements to use Conanicut Island for grazing sheep.
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