- Its first white settler was Rev. William Blackstone, who had been the first in what is now Boston. He got away from the growing intolerance on the Shawmut peninsula.
- Then Roger Williams brought his crowd for similar and expanded purposes of freedom.
- It was the site of the continent's first Jewish temple and was an open home for religious liberty.
- It still exempts orthodox Jewish groups from its more restrictive marriage regulations.
- It recognized same-sex marriages solemnized in Massachusetts when other states refuse comity.
- It allows and even encourages businesses and non-profits to offer homosexual couples full benefits.
Tags: massmarrier, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, same sex marriage, MERI