Kickamuit River

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Kickamuit River
Kickamuit River display plaque.jpg
An informational display tells the history of the Kickamuit River.
Other name(s) Kickemuit River
Etymology Narragansett
Country United States
Cities Warren, Rhode Island
Rehoboth, Massachusetts

The Kickamuit River is a river in the U.S. states of Massachusetts and Rhode Island flowing approximately 7.9 miles (12.7 km).[1]


The river's name descends from a Narragansett dialect and has numerous spellings.

During the American Revolutionary War, the Kickamuit was a major traffic artery, and supplies traveled up the river daily.[2] By the 1800s, oyster beds were a major revenue source, but by 1910, effluent from the nearby Parker Mills, and general sewage pollution, killed most of the oysters.[2] The Kickamuit River oyster industry was ended with the Hurricane of 1938.[2]

In 2002, the Environmental Protection Agency judged it too polluted for recreation and shell-fishing.

Current day (2011), the Kickamuit River is classified as a Class A, Type II Waterway and open to both recreational activities and shell-fishing due to the tremendous efforts and work by environmental organizations like the Kickemuit River Council, Warren, R.I.

Kickamuit River panorama taken at Warren Bike Path. Remains of train bridge in center.


The river's source is in Rehoboth, Massachusetts in the swamps north of Locust Street in Swansea. From here it flows due south to Swansea and into the Warren Reservoir, which drains approximately 2,300 acres (9.3 km2). From Warren Reservoir it flows generally southwest, then southeast to Mount Hope Bay, passing to the east of the center of the town of Warren, Rhode Island and ending northeast of Bristol. The Kickamuit Reservoir dam forms the boundary between fresh and salt water.


Below is a list of crossings over the Kickamuit River. The list starts at the headwaters and goes downstream.

  • Swansea, Massachusetts
    • Locust Street
    • Reed Street
    • Interstate 195
    • Stephen French Road
    • Colletti Lane
    • Fall River Avenue (U.S. 6)
    • Burnside Drive
    • Lynnwood Road
    • Bushee Road
  • Warren, Rhode Island
    • Schoolhouse Road
    • Child Street (RI 103)


Heath Brook is the Kickamuit River's only named tributary, though it has many unnamed streams that also feed it.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ U.S. Geological Survey. National Hydrography Dataset high-resolution flowline data. The National Map Archived 2012-04-05 at WebCite, accessed April 1, 2011
  2. ^ a b c "History of the Kickemuit River" (Informational display on Warren Bike Path at Kickemuit River). RI Department of Environmental Management. 

External links[edit]