Image by Sean Foster

Olneyville Providence, RI

AREA DEMOGRAPHIC & FAMILY INCOME

As of the 2010 US Census, the racial and ethnic breakdown of Olneyville in Providence, Rhode Island was 61% Hispanic; 16% White; 13% Black or African American; 4% Asian; 6% Other 3% of public school children speak a language other than English as their primary language.

The median family income is $19,046, well below the citywide average of $32,058. 41.1% of families live in poverty while nearly one in four families receive some form of public assistance.

A HISTORIC AREA

Olneyville has a very rich and deep history which is unknown to many.  Settlement in Olneyville began at Olneyville Square in the early 18th century as a center of trade with nearby Narragansett village.   Olneyville Square is a major traffic intersection in Olneyville, defined by the intersection of Westminster Street, Broadway, Hartford Ave, Plainfield Street, and Manton Avenue. The Narragansett tribe had established their presence on the land long before Roger Williams.   The settlement grew significantly around 1785, after Christopher Olney, for whom Olneyville is named, founded a grist mill and a paper mill on a wide part of the Woonasquatucket River. Olney was a captain during the Revolutionary War and owned a 95-acre farm in the area. By the end of the American Revolutionary War, a forge and foundry and other small industries operated in Olneyville.

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THE PAST BEFORE A BRIGHT FUTURE!

Through the mid-19th century, Olneyville developed as a railroad junction and a mill district, with lots of work available. This helped attract many immigrants from overseas, including Guatemalans, Mexicans, Irish, Italians, Dominicans, Africans, Chinese, Vietnamese, and many others. However, the mill industries declined after World War II causing economic decline.  

NATIONAL LEAGUE CHAMPIONS, BABE RUTH & WORLD RECORDS!  

Additionally, Rhode Island was a hotbed of baseball in the 1870s. The Providence Grays were a Major League Baseball team based in Providence, Rhode Island who played in the National League from 1878 until 1885. One hundred years ago this month, Babe Ruth, the most iconic slugger in the history of baseball arrived in Providence as a little-known lefty pitcher. A month later, he had captured the city’s hearts by helping lead the way as the Providence Grays won a thrilling International League pennant race.

 

The Grays played at the Messer Street Grounds in the Olneyville neighborhood. The team won the National League title twice, in 1879 and 1884.Following the 1884 season, they won the first World Series over the New York Metropolitans of the American Association. The team folded after the 1885 season.

 

Other memorable highlights of the Grays' short existence include a no-hitter by Radbourn on July 25, 1883; the second perfect game in MLB history, pitched by John Montgomery Ward on June 17, 1880; and pitcher Charlie Sweeney striking out 19 batters in a nine-inning game on June 7, 1884, a record that would stand until broken by Roger Clemens 102 years later. They also still hold the record for the largest score in a shutout victory, with a 28-0 victory over the Philadelphia Phillies on August 21, 1883.

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OLNEYVILLE TODAY: A RE-DEVELOPMENT WITH COMMUNITY IMPACT

Since 2000, many vacant lots and abandoned buildings have been purchased by developers who hope to rejuvenate the area.

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CHEER FLOWER FARM USING FLOWER POWER TO BRING CHEER

The 25 Bough Street Initiative will produce great community energy and is also around the same. What cheer is a nonprofit flower farm in Olneyville, Providence.  They do not sell flowers -- instead we give bouquets for free to hospitals, hospices, food banks, senior housing, recovery centers & other social services to bring cheer.

Founded in 2017, What Cheer Flower Farm sits on 2.7 acres of former factory land in the Olneyville neighborhood of Providence, RI.

A HOP, SKIP & A JUMP FROM 25 BOUGH IS WES'S RIB HOUSE

Wes' Rib House first opened on 1973 on Broad Street, in Providence. We then relocated to 38 Dike Street, in Historic Olneyville, in 1983.  It looks great, the food is amazing and it's a must stop in Olneyville!

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REQUEST MORE INFORMATION FOR 25 BOUGH
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