R 310
2017 -- H 6321
Enacted 06/08/2017

H O U S E   R E S O L U T I O N

Introduced By: Representatives McNamara, Vella-Wilkinson, Shanley, Solomon, and
Date Introduced: June 08, 2017

     WHEREAS, On the night of June 9, 1772, brave Rhode Island colonists captured and
burned the reviled British revenue schooner, H.M.S. Gaspee, in one of the boldest and most
colorful victories in our country's War for American Independence; and
     WHEREAS, The Gaspee had been harassing Rhode Island since the days of the Stamp
Act. Its burning off Namquid Point was an ultimate act of defiance and has become renowned as
the first blood shed during the American Revolution and America's "First Blow for Freedom."
The colonists actions were a supreme act of protest against the tyranny of the British Crown, and
they provided a strong impetus in the movement of the American colonies toward independence;
     WHEREAS, The burning of H.M.S. Gaspee led to the formation of a Committee of
Correspondence, which in turn led to the establishment of the Continental Congress, and,
eventually, to the Declaration of Independence; and
     WHEREAS, Today, two hundred and forty-five years later, the memory of this
incendiary act still fires the hearts and minds of the residents of historic Pawtuxet Village, and
since 1965, the village has memorialized the event with an annual Gaspee Days Celebration. This
year's festivities will include a 5K road race, live music, and an Arts & Crafts Festival, with the
highlight being a Gaspee Days parade. Also featured is the burning of the Gaspee in effigy, as
well as a Revolutionary War battle reenactment, and Revolutionary War-era fife and drum bands
and so much more; and
     WHEREAS, In 1995, legislation was enacted by the Rhode Island General Assembly to
annually designate the second Saturday and the following Sunday in the month of June as Days of
Special Observance to be known as Gaspee Days; now, therefore be it
     RESOLVED, That this House of Representatives of the State of Rhode Island and
Providence Plantations hereby commemorates the 52nd annual celebration of Gaspee Days. We
moreover urge the patriotic citizens of the Ocean State to participate in the festivities honoring
this momentous event in the history of our state and our nation; and be it further
     RESOLVED, That the Secretary of State be and hereby is authorized and directed to
transmit a duly certified copy of this resolution to the Proclamation Chairman of the Gaspee Days