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South Kingstown, Rhode Island
Town of South Kingstown
Location of South Kingstown in Washington County, Rhode Island
Location of South Kingstown in Washington County, Rhode Island
Country United States
State Rhode Island
County Washington
Incorporated 1723
 • Total 79.8 sq mi (206.6 km2)
 • Land 57.1 sq mi (147.9 km2)
 • Water 22.7 sq mi (58.7 km2)
98 ft (30 m)
 • Total 30,639 inhabitants
 • Density 536.6/sq mi (207.2/km2)
Time zone UTC-5 (Eastern (EST))
 • Summer (DST) UTC-4 (EDT)
ZIP codes
02874 (Saunderstown), 02879 (Wakefield), 02881 (Kingston), 02883 (Peace Dale), 02892 (West Kingston)
Area code(s) 401
FIPS code 44-67460
GNIS feature ID 1220090

South Kingstown is a town in Washington County, Rhode Island, United States. The population was 30,639 at the 2010 census. South Kingstown is the largest town in Washington County and is the largest town (land and water area) in the state of Rhode Island.


The town of South Kingstown was formed in 1722 when the former Kings Towne was split into two parts, the other being North Kingstown. South Kingstown was incorporated in 1723. In 1888 a narrow strip of land running along the eastern bank of the Pettaquamscutt River to the shore of Narragansett Bay was separated from South Kingstown to form the town of Narragansett.


According to the United States Census Bureau, the town has a total area of 79.8 square miles (206.6 km²), of which, 57.1 square miles (147.9 km²) of it is land and 22.7 square miles (58.7 km²) of it (28.43%) is water.

South Kingstown includes the villages of Kingston, West Kingston, Wakefield, Peace Dale, Usquepaug, Snug Harbor, Tuckertown, East Matunuck, Matunuck, Green Hill, and Perryville. Peace Dale and Wakefield are treated as a census-designated place called Wakefield-Peacedale. Ocean Ridge, Indian Lake, Curtis Corner, and Torrey Hill are among the other small areas that are regarded as unique localities, although official distinctions are less clear. Middlebridge, located on the west side of Narrow River, is a densely populated neighborhood in the town.

Adjacent towns

South Kingstown is bordered to the south by the Atlantic Ocean.


Historical population
Census Pop.
1790 4,131
1800 3,438 −16.8%
1810 3,560 3.5%
1820 3,723 4.6%
1830 3,663 −1.6%
1840 3,717 1.5%
1850 3,807 2.4%
1860 4,717 23.9%
1870 4,493 −4.7%
1880 5,114 13.8%
1890 4,823 −5.7%
1900 4,972 3.1%
1910 5,176 4.1%
1920 5,181 0.1%
1930 6,010 16.0%
1940 7,282 21.2%
1950 10,148 39.4%
1960 11,942 17.7%
1970 16,913 41.6%
1980 20,414 20.7%
1990 24,631 20.7%
2000 27,921 13.4%
2010 30,639 9.7%
Est. 2015 30,826 0.6%
U.S. Decennial Census

As of the census of 2000, there were 27,921 people, 9,268 households, and 6,394 families residing in the town. The population density was 489.0 people per square mile (188.8/km²). There were 11,291 housing units at an average density of 197.8/sq mi (76.4/km²). The racial makeup of the town was 91.11% White, 1.57% African American, 1.61% Native American, 3.08% Asian, 0.05% Pacific Islander, 0.73% from other races, and 1.86% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.77% of the population.

There were 9,268 households out of which 34.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 56.4% were married couples living together, 9.4% had a female householder with no husband present, and 31.0% were non-families. 24.2% of all households were made up of individuals and 9.6% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.56 and the average family size was 3.07.

In the town the population was spread out with 22.5% under the age of 18, 19.8% from 18 to 24, 24.4% from 25 to 44, 21.7% from 45 to 64, and 11.6% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 34 years. For every 100 females there were 90.5 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 87.5 males.

The median income for a household in the town was $56,325, and the median income for a family was $67,912. Males had a median income of $50,519 versus $31,087 for females. The per capita income for the town was $23,827. About 3.1% of families and 5.3% of the population were below the poverty line, including 4.9% of those under age 18 and 5.0% of those age 65 or over.

Arts and culture

Art galleries include the Hera Gallery (Wakefield), South County Art Association (Kingston), and sometimes the Courthouse Center for the Arts (or CCA, West Kingston). Theaters include The Contemporary Theatre (Wakefield), the Theatre-by-the-Sea (Matunuck), and the CCA. The sole cinema is South County Cinema 8 (Wakefield), which replaced the independently run Campus Cinema (Wakefield) in the early 2000s. There are numerous venues for music and other entertainment, including the University of Rhode Island's Ryan Center and smaller venues such as Lily Pads (Peace Dale), and the CCA.

Arts and cultural education is also offered through community centers like The Guild and the Senior Center in Wakefield. There are also three public libraries which are located in Kingston, Matunuck, and Peace Dale.


The Ocean State Waves of the historic New England Collegiate Baseball League play their home games at Old Mountain Field located at 875 Kingstown Rd.


The South County History Center, located in the village of Kingston, is located in a former jail building and contains a collection of fine Early American artifacts.

Points of interest

South Kingstown is the location of the deadly Great Swamp Fight that occurred during King Philip's War in 1675. The battle site is commemorated by a rough granite shaft about twenty feet high. Around the mound on which the shaft stands are four granite markers engraved with the names of the colonies which took part in the battle. South Kingstown is home to 31 sites listed on the National Register of Historic Places, 4 of which are historic districts. A driving tour is described by the Pettaquamscutt Historical Society.

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