Block Island is an American coastal island just offshore of the U.S. state of Rhode Island. The island is almost nine miles south of the United States mainland. It is fourteen miles east of the Montauk Point area of Long Island in New York. It was named in the 1600s for the Dutch explorer Adriaen Block. Block Island is included in Washington County in southwestern Rhode Island. It shares the same area as the town of New Shoreham.
Block Island was incorporated under the Rhode Island General Assembly in 1672. The government of the island then adopted the name New Shoreham.
The original North Lighthouse was built in 1829. It was replaced in 1837 when the original was washed out to sea. But the replacement lighthouse suffered a similar fate to the original lighthouse. The modern lighthouse was constructed in 1867. Construction began on the Block Island six years later in 1873.
The Block Island State Airport opened in 1950. It remains today for a general aviation-type airport. In 1972, the Block Island Conservancy was founded. The Conservancy and other environmental groups are responsible for protecting over 40% of Block Island from development. In 1974, the Old Harbor Historic District was declared a National Register historic district.
On August 19, 1991, just before 1:30 pm, Hurricane Bob crossed right over Block Island with sustained winds near 105 miles per hour. That meant Bob was a strong Category 2 when it passed over the island.
References[change | change source]
- "Block Island History". Block Island Tourism Council. Retrieved July 19, 2021.
- "Ten Things to Do on Block Island". New England with Love. Retrieved July 19, 2021.
- "The Historic Light Station Information". United States Coast Guard. Retrieved July 19, 2021.
- "Remembering Hurricane Bob". The NECN News. Retrieved July 19, 2021.