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ClergyGovernanceWritersPhysicians
borndied
1609, Oct1676, Apr 20
a physician, Baptist minister, co-founder of the Colony of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations, author of its influential charter, and a leading advocate of religious freedom in the Americas. All of the other New England colonies were hostile to Rhode Island, and both Massachusetts and Connecticut had made incursions into Rhode Island territory. After the restoration of the monarchy in England in 1660, it was imperative that Rhode Island receive a royal charter to protect its territorial integrity. It was Clarke's role to obtain such a document, and he saw this as an opportunity to include religious freedoms never seen before in any constitutional charter.
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