- Narrow River Preservation Association
- P.O. Box 8 - Saunderstown
- Rhode Island 02874 - United States
- [email protected]
Saunderstown is a historic village located in the town of North Kingstown in the state of Rhode Island, United States. It's situated along the western shore of Narragansett Bay, and it has a rich history that dates back to colonial times. Here's an overview of Saunderstown's history:
Colonial Era: Saunderstown was settled in the 1600s by European colonists. The area was initially part of the Narragansett Plantations, founded by Roger Williams, a prominent figure in Rhode Island's early history. The land was used for agriculture and fishing, taking advantage of its coastal location.
Revolutionary War: During the American Revolutionary War, Saunderstown and the surrounding area played a role in the struggle for independence. The bay's coastline was utilized for maritime activities, and privateering (privately owned ships authorized by the government to engage in naval warfare) was common.
Maritime Heritage: Throughout its history, Saunderstown's proximity to the bay made it a hub for maritime activities. Fishing, shipbuilding, and trade were important aspects of the local economy.
19th Century: The village continued to thrive in the 19th century. It became a summer destination for wealthy families seeking respite from urban areas. Many elegant summer homes and estates were built during this time, some of which still stand today.
20th Century: Saunderstown's character began to change in the 20th century as the area attracted more year-round residents. While some historic homes and estates remained, the village experienced suburban development and growth. However, efforts have been made to preserve the historical charm of the area.
Cultural Significance: Saunderstown has historical significance beyond its physical structures. It was home to Gilbert Stuart, a renowned portrait artist who famously painted the portrait of George Washington that appears on the U.S. one-dollar bill. The Gilbert Stuart Birthplace and Museum in Saunderstown commemorates his legacy.
Present Day: Today, Saunderstown remains a picturesque coastal village with a blend of historical architecture and modern development. Its scenic location, historic sites, and proximity to the water continue to make it an appealing place to live and visit.
To delve deeper into Saunderstown's history, you can explore local historical societies, visit museums, and consult historical records specific to the area.
Top Tourist Attractions
While it's a relatively small and residential area, there are several notable attractions and nearby destinations that visitors might enjoy. Here are some top tourist attractions in and around Saunderstown:
- Gilbert Stuart Birthplace and Museum: This museum is dedicated to the life and work of Gilbert Stuart, the famous portrait artist known for painting the iconic portrait of George Washington. The museum features exhibits about Stuart's life, his art, and the history of the area.
- Casey Farm: Operated by Historic New England, Casey Farm is a historic working farm that offers guided tours, educational programs, and events. The farm has a history dating back to the 18th century and provides insight into the agricultural heritage of the region.
- Sylvia State Beach: Located nearby in neighboring Narragansett, this beach offers a lovely spot for relaxation and recreation. It features sandy shores, gentle waves, and views of the Atlantic Ocean.
- Wickford Village: Just a short drive from Saunderstown, Wickford Village is a picturesque waterfront area known for its historic architecture, charming shops, art galleries, and waterfront views. It's a great place for a leisurely stroll.
- North Kingstown Town Beach: This beach is a popular destination for swimming, sunbathing, and picnicking. It's a family-friendly spot with facilities and beautiful coastal scenery.
- Historical Sites: While not a single attraction, Saunderstown and its surroundings are dotted with historical sites, including old colonial houses, churches, and cemeteries that provide a glimpse into the area's past.
- Narragansett Bay: The village's proximity to Narragansett Bay means there are opportunities for boating, fishing, and enjoying the scenic beauty of the bay's coastline.
- Nature Trails: Explore the natural beauty of the area by taking a walk on local nature trails. The area's coastal landscapes and wooded areas offer opportunities for outdoor enthusiasts.
- Local Eateries: While Saunderstown itself may not have a wide range of dining options, nearby towns like Wickford and North Kingstown offer a variety of restaurants, cafes, and eateries where you can enjoy local cuisine.
- Outdoor Activities: Enjoy outdoor activities such as kayaking, paddleboarding, and biking in the surrounding areas.
Remember that Saunderstown is a quieter and more residential area, so its attractions are often focused on its historical and natural aspects. If you're seeking a serene getaway with a touch of history and coastal charm, Saunderstown and its neighboring destinations can offer a pleasant experience.
Saunderstown experiences a humid continental climate with influences from its coastal proximity. Here's an overview of the climate you can expect in Saunderstown:
- Seasonal Variation: Saunderstown has distinct four seasons, with varying temperatures and weather conditions throughout the year.
- Winter (December - February): Winters in Saunderstown are cold and snowy. Average temperatures during this period range from around 30°F to 40°F (-1°C to 4°C). Snowfall is common, contributing to winter sports and activities.
- Spring (March - May): Spring brings milder temperatures and the gradual thawing of snow. Average temperatures range from 40°F to 60°F (4°C to 15°C). This season sees increasing vegetation and blooming flowers.
- Summer (June - August): Summers in Saunderstown are warm and humid. Average temperatures range from 70°F to 80°F (21°C to 27°C). This is the peak tourist season, as visitors come to enjoy the coastal attractions and beaches.
- Fall (September - November): Fall is a beautiful time to visit Saunderstown due to the vibrant foliage. Average temperatures range from 50°F to 70°F (10°C to 21°C). The region's trees transform into a riot of colors, making it a popular time for sightseeing.
- Precipitation: Saunderstown receives a moderate amount of precipitation throughout the year. Rainfall is relatively evenly distributed, with a slightly wetter period in the summer months. Snowfall is common in winter, contributing to the picturesque seasonal landscape.
- Coastal Influence: Being situated along the coast of Narragansett Bay, Saunderstown's climate is influenced by the bay's moderating effect. This means that temperatures tend to be slightly milder in the winter and cooler in the summer compared to areas farther inland.
- Hurricane Season: Like much of the East Coast of the United States, Saunderstown can be affected by hurricanes and tropical storms, especially during the hurricane season from June to November. While direct hits are relatively rare, the area can experience heavy rainfall and gusty winds associated with these storms.
Remember that specific weather conditions can vary from year to year, so it's always a good idea to check a reliable weather forecast closer to your travel dates.
Saunderstown is a village located within the town of North Kingstown in the state of Rhode Island, United States. The village is situated along the western shore of Narragansett Bay, providing it with a scenic coastal setting. Here's an overview of the geography of Saunderstown:
- Coastline: One of the defining features of Saunderstown's geography is its coastline along Narragansett Bay. The bay is a large estuary that opens into the Atlantic Ocean, and it offers picturesque views, recreational opportunities, and a maritime influence on the local climate.
- Topography: The terrain in and around Saunderstown is generally characterized by gentle slopes and rolling hills. While the area is not mountainous, these hills contribute to the scenic beauty of the region.
- Waterways: In addition to Narragansett Bay, there are smaller waterways, ponds, and coves in the vicinity. These bodies of water contribute to the village's natural beauty and offer opportunities for activities such as boating, fishing, and kayaking.
- Natural Beauty: The area around Saunderstown is known for its natural beauty. The combination of coastal landscapes, wooded areas, and open spaces makes it an attractive destination for those seeking outdoor recreation and relaxation.
- Flora and Fauna: Saunderstown's geography supports a variety of plant and animal life. You can find a mix of coastal vegetation, woodland species, and aquatic life due to its proximity to the bay.
- Nearby Attractions: While Saunderstown itself is a relatively small village, it's located in close proximity to other attractions within North Kingstown and neighboring towns. These attractions include historical sites, beaches, parks, and other points of interest.
- Access to Water: The village's location along Narragansett Bay historically played a significant role in its development, with maritime activities like fishing, shipbuilding, and trade contributing to the local economy.
- Urban Proximity: While Saunderstown retains its scenic and relatively rural character, it's not far from more urban areas like Wickford and North Kingstown. This makes it convenient for residents and visitors to access amenities, restaurants, and services.
Overall, Saunderstown's geography is characterized by its coastal charm, natural beauty, and historical significance within the context of Rhode Island's maritime heritage. It's a destination that offers a blend of historical sites, outdoor activities, and serene landscapes for those looking to explore and enjoy the region.