BRENTON POINT STATE PARK
Occupying the former grounds of one of Newport's grandest estates, Brenton Point State Park affords its visitors one of the most commanding and spectacular views on the East Coast. The park is located at the point of land where Narragansett Bay meets the Atlantic, midway along renowned Ocean Drive. Visitors can enjoy picnicking, hiking, fishing, or just relaxing with the cool breezes and majestic views of the Atlantic.
William Brenton was born about 1600 and died 1674. He was an American Colonial Official, active in the settlement of Rhode Island. He went from England to Boston in 1633 and then left Massachusetts for Portsmouth, RI in 1637. Brenton was one of a group that settled Newport. He was Deputy Governor of the towns of Portsmouth and Newport between 1640 and 1647. He then moved back to Boston but returned to Newport by 1660. For the next 8 years he held the office as Governor and Deputy Governor. Brenton died at his residence, Hammersmith Farm, Newport in 1674. In 1941 the United States Army took over the estate and used it as a sight for Coastal Artillery Battery until 1946.
In 1969 the State of Rhode Island took over the property under the Green Acres Program. In 1974 Governor Phillip W. Noel and the Director of Natural Resources, Dennis J. Murphy III, agreed with the City of Newport that a ten member commission be formed and known as the Brenton Point State Park Commission. Their functions are to oversee any change or construction at Brenton Point State Park. In 1976 Brenton Point State Park was opened to the public. Brenton Point State Park has an assortment of beautiful gardens, walking trails, restrooms and about 20 picnic tables available to the public on a first come first serve basis.