Talk:National Register of Historic Places listings in Rhode Island

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
WikiProject National Register of Historic Places (Rated List-class, High-importance)
WikiProject icon This article is within the scope of WikiProject National Register of Historic Places, a collaborative effort to improve the coverage of U.S. historic sites listed on the National Register of Historic Places on Wikipedia. If you would like to participate, please visit the project page, where you can join the discussion and see a list of open tasks.
 List  This article has been rated as List-Class on the project's quality scale.
 High  This article has been rated as High-importance on the project's importance scale.

Split by county[edit]

The list was way too long, so I broke it out by county on separate pages. Now List of Registered Historic Places in Rhode Island will redirect to List of Registered Historic Places in Bristol County, Rhode Island, which is the first county alphabetically. This is similar to the way it's done in Massachusetts. I also made a template {{NRHP TOC RI}} to use as a TOC on the top of each county page. tiZom(2¢) 23:17, 23 March 2008 (UTC)

I converted this back to an index page for the state, since it is disconcerting to click on a link to the whole state and end up looking at a list for one county.
An additional concern I have is that the counties of Rhode Island have no significance; in fact many of the state's residents could not accurately name the county they live in. Sorting by town likely would be more useful for this state. --Orlady (talk) 18:25, 7 October 2008 (UTC)

NRHP HD articles in RI[edit]

Extending out from disagreement by several editors (including me) about NRHP historic district (HD) articles in CT, is now disagreement about several places in Vermont and also in Rhode Island. There is now discussion going on in Talk pages of several RI NRHP HD articles or the Talk pages of hamlet/village articles that correspond in some ways to them, or which have been created as counterparts to them.

I object on a basic level to extending the scope of disagreement to Vermont and Rhode Island articles, when it should be possible to discuss principles and come to agreement in CT, first, where there is an RFC open and several continuing discussions.

But if escalation into articles in Rhode Island is going on, I suggest that discussion about NRHP HD articles and counterpart hamlet or other articles should be centralized here. I personally would prefer some general discussion about principles, rather than edit warring, but I will respond to what i perceive as combative editing to prevent the creation of articles on the topic of wikipedia-notable NRHP HDs. (See also Talk:National Register of Historic Places listings in Vermont). doncram (talk) 06:08, 8 July 2009 (UTC)

The separate discussions currently include:

(more to be added)

Principles to be applied[edit]

As a basic principle, I think it needs to be noted that NRHP HDs are well-documented, wikipedia-notable topics. doncram (talk) 06:17, 8 July 2009 (UTC)

Hope Valley Historic District[edit]

(merger proposal to merge with Hope Valley, Rhode Island discussion moved to here -- Doncram)
Doncram created the nearly content-free article Hope Valley Historic District earlier today, and has recreated it again after the old redirect was restored by another user. As with the articles for other Rhode Island industrial villages that are listed on the National Register of Historic Places as historic districts, I believe it makes little sense -- and is ultimately a disservice to encyclopedia users -- to maintain separate articles for the historic districts. See Talk:Carolina, Rhode Island and Talk:Wyoming, Rhode Island. Accordingly, I propose to replace the HD article with the redirect to this article. --Orlady (talk) 20:42, 6 July 2009 (UTC)

Oppose merger The NRHP HD is unquestionably documented by an NRHP application document and wikipedia-notable. The Hope Valley, Rhode Island article is about a CDP having 3.5 square miles of area, and it would be difficult and uncomfortable for an editor to develop an NRHP HD article within the CDP article, ultimately to be split out because they simply will not fit with each other, while they would make good complementary topics of articles. The basic issue here and in other merger proposals, is whether editors will be allowed to comfortably develop well-sourced NRHP HD articles on universally-acknowledged wikipedia notable topics without interference. To call the current stub article "nearly content-free" is an opening statement that I interpret to be sarcastic and meant to be insulting. Hundreds of thousands of wikipedia articles need further development. This does start something, making way for less-confident would-be editors to see that this is accepted as a wikipedia-notable topic, and to begin adding sources and pictures and so on. Orlady has elsewhere made I-interpret-to-be-sarcastic comments about trees and forests. For a same-themed "chestnut": from mere acorns, great trees can grow. doncram (talk) 06:31, 8 July 2009 (UTC)
I have called the HD article "nearly content-free", so I guess I had better elaborate. The HD article currently says little more about the HD than "it exists." The additional information (acreage, number of buildings, and date listed) would not normally be considered sufficient to establish a topic's notability. The article gives no clue as to what it is about this HD that is significant or even interesting, and it includes the statement "It includes part or all of Hope Valley, Rhode Island," which indicates to the reader that Wikipedia actually knows next to nothing about this HD. Maybe it could have its own article someday, but the current article is little more than a placeholder.
As I said on the Connecticut National Register talk page, it is content forking when there are two very short articles about a single unincorporated village that is listed on the National Register as an historic district. It is a disservice to users to present them with two articles about essentially the same topic. The fact that there might possibly be minor differences between what's considered to be the "village" and the official definition of the HD (for example, there might be 100 buildings in the village but only 76 of them are included in the historic district, of which 11 are not contributing properties) does not change the fact that the village and the historic district are the same place. Application of the Wikipedia guideline on content forking, as well as the Wikipedia advice on topics such as merging articles and splitting articles, leads to the conclusion that the small distinctions between villages and historic districts do not justify creation of separate articles, particularly when those separate articles contain very little information. Referring to the Wikipedia guidelines on "Merging" articles, I note that these pages qualify for merging on all criteria: they typically are either duplicates or have large overlap, one or both of these pages is very short and is unlikely to be expanded within a reasonable amount of time, and one article often requires the other article for context.
It is not at all difficult to write a single article that names a village, describes its location, presents any available data about it, tells about its history, and states something like "The Hope Valley Historic District, including 1830 acres, was listed on the National Register on [date]. The district includes..." That avoids duplication, puts the tiny amount of historic district information into the context of other meaningful information about the village, and it gives the reader a more satisfying experience than they would get from a minimal stub that says little more than "This historic district exists."
Finally, it was suggested that the the 3.5-mi² CDP is much too large to be correlated with the HD. However, I notice that the CDP has a total land area of 3.3 mi², while the HD has a total area of 1830 acres, which works out to 2.86 mi². Thus, it turns out that the difference in land area between the CDP and the HD is not particularly significant. --Orlady (talk) 04:53, 10 July 2009 (UTC)
Actually, the HD's total area is apparently 183 acres, not 1830 acres (although the latter is reported, incorrectly, at NRHP.COM's listing). Seems like the HD at .286 sq. mi. is very different than the CDP at 3.5 sq. mi. doncram (talk) 20:12, 11 August 2009 (UTC)
Also, the coordinates at least in the Hope Valley Historic District article are wrong, placing it in the Atlantic Ocean off of Florida. I don't want to disrespect another editor's wishes for how to handle discussion here, but how can I proceed to develop the HD article while this discussion continues, except by restoring it? By my edit fixing area in the article, i have restored the HD article, including the merger proposal tag. It seems appropriate to have both articles in existence, to allow for development and corrections like of area and coordinates, while the merger discussion is ongoing. doncram (talk) 20:46, 11 August 2009 (UTC)
LOL, I guess that may explain why the GIS-generated map at doesn't include the Hope Valley HD. Regardless, there's no doubt that the historic district is in Hope Valley. Note that describes the properties that were going to be proposed for inclusion in the HD, all listed and contributing properties in Hopkinton are listed in the database at (search for Hopkinton properties, browse the addresses, and click on the "view" button to find out which HD a property is in and read about its architecture), and you can find the historic district (on Main St. of Hopkinton near the Hope Valley dam) in Google Maps and use Streetview to look at the listed properties.
I still can't understand the insistence on having a separate article for the National Register-listed historic district when the only information about it is a database entry, the available information about its location and land area isn't entirely trustworthy, there is plenty of available information about the history and historic features of Hope Valley, and all available information that's considered suitable for the HD article can be (and has been) easily incorporated in the more content-rich article about Hope Valley. --Orlady (talk) 02:32, 12 August 2009 (UTC)

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── Aggressive editing on this topic, with no sources, no new discussion, has resumed, with at least 4 edits to redirect HD articles and related redirects to here. I've reverted those edits. AS noted above, the areas for the places are completely different, for just one thing. The burden should be on P to obtain and share sources if he wishes to make some new arguments. But, why? Why make new arguments? Why re-open contention, rather than developing wikipedia articles in more serious ways? --doncram (talk) 07:04, 28 August 2010 (UTC)

Consider the situation:
  • The HD article consists only of 3 short sentences and an infobox. All of the contents are derived solely from the database entry in NRIS, although the HD article still has that strange footnote indicating that the HD acreage is from, where the acreage info is off by a factor of 10.
  • There had been no substantive edits to the HD article in more than a year, and no discussion of the merge proposal in over a year.
  • The only contents in the HD article that are not also in the village article are the NatReg reference number and the specific day in 2004 when the district was listed on the NR. Both of these are in the infobox and not the article text, so they could easily be added to the village article by inserting the infobox in that article.
  • The HD article provides no context for details, such as the significance of the "built/founded" date listed in the infobox, that are discussed in the village article, which has a 3-paragraph section on the history of the village.
After a full year went by with a merge proposal displayed on the two articles, no discussion of the proposal, and no effort on anyone's part to add any content to the HD stub-article that would justify keeping it as a separate article, I think that it was entirely justifiable for somebody to consummate the proposed merger. As I have stated elsewhere, your insistence that these and other similar merger proposals not occur impresses me as the behavior of a dog in the manger -- you apparently have no use for the topic of Hope Valley, but you are determined not to allow anyone else to improve Wikipedia's coverage of the topic of Hope Valley by incorporating the NRHP infobox into the village article and redirecting the HD page to the village article. --Orlady (talk) 20:23, 28 August 2010 (UTC)

Carolina Village Historic District[edit]

(Whether to merge or not with Carolina, Rhode Island was under discussion at Talk:Carolina, Rhode Island (discussion opened by me). I moved the discussion to here. -- Doncram)

An editor has proposed that Carolina Village Historic District be merged into Carolina, Rhode Island article.

Actually, there is no source about the location of Carolina in the current article. It is asserted now in the Carolina article that it is a village in two towns, but honestly i wonder if that is only speculation to echo the fact that Carolina Village Historic District is a historic district that spans into both Charlestown, Rhode Island and Richmond, Rhode Island.

There is no notability of Carolina asserted or supported, other than its association with the NRHP HD which is clearly notable and for which there is an extensive reliable source available (the NRHP application document). I say let the village article exist and continue, and collect any stray information there about the village, and allow the NRHP HD article to be developed as a strictly sourced article about the buildings and other elements, and how they speak to history of the area. A historic district article is like an article about a collection of artifacts in a museum. Note: To merge the two with any claim that the village and the NRHP HD are the same would introduce a fabrication, WP:OR, that they are the same.

Sorry, but basically there is no information developed that indicates the two areas are the same, and there is no information available to establish whether the histories are the same. Could this merger proposal be withdrawn until a later date? doncram (talk) 11:13, 6 July 2009 (UTC)

You might want to do a quick online search to alleviate your concerns. The fact that the location of the village and historic district coincide in the GNIS database should be a good indication. It is also easily found in that the village straddles the town line (there is an official state document that lists what town(s) villages are in). How about we merge to consolidate information and make it easy for future editors to expand the topic of "Carolina" and then we think about splitting at a later date when content is sufficiently developed? --Polaron | Talk 13:48, 6 July 2009 (UTC)
  • Oppose at least for now. There are NO SOURCES WHATSOEVER speaking to the relationship of the NRHP HD to the hamlet. In many cases where the same merger proponents have argued for merger based on no sources, it has subsequently turned out that there are big differences. Also same reasons as stated in numerous other merger proposal discussions. It is just premature to argue that the topics must be the same and that the wikipedia notable topic of the NRHP HD shall not be allowed to be developed. doncram (talk) 07:57, 8 July 2009 (UTC)
Regarding Carolina, the Rhode Island Historical Commission says: "Except for the condition of the mill complex, the nineteenth century village is relatively intact and has been entered in the National Register of Historic Places." See page 11 (page 26 of the PDF) in this document, published in 1977 (3 years after the National Register listing). --Orlady (talk) 19:11, 14 July 2009 (UTC)
  • Comment on process There are merger proposal tags on the two articles and there was adequate notice of where this discussion is ongoing, but an editor removed the merger tags and deleted/redirected the NRHP HD article. I just restored the merger tags and the article to enable this discussion to continue.

Orlady, i appreciate you located that PDF source, and I'll take a look at it. The RI Historical Commission sounds like it would usually be a reliable source, but I wonder if that quoted sentence reflects an approximation, an appropriate editorial summary, and perhaps is not to be taken literally. It seems to me highly appropriate for someone to obtain the NRHP HD application document for the NRHP HD and obtain maps, etc. doncram (talk) 15:44, 17 July 2009 (UTC)

The two Rhode Island Historical Preservation Commission reports cited in Carolina, Rhode Island (the one for Richmond and the one for Charlestown) contain a lot of information about Carolina and the National Register listing. They were sources for much (but not all) of the content that I have contributed for the Carolina article. The PDFs for both reports are linked in that article. I hasten to point out that I am not the one who originally located them -- it was Polaron who first pointed out their existence. --Orlady (talk) 15:55, 17 July 2009 (UTC)

Wyoming Village Historic District[edit]

Whether to merge or not with Wyoming, Rhode Island is under discussion at Talk:Wyoming, Rhode Island. doncram (talk) 07:47, 8 July 2009 (UTC)

Kingston Village Historic District[edit]

Wakefield Historic District[edit]

Peace Dale Historic District[edit]

I think you meant to say "Peace Dale", as in Peace Dale, Rhode Island and Peace Dale Historic District. There has been some discussion at Talk:Peace Dale, Rhode Island. --Orlady (talk) 03:35, 10 July 2009 (UTC)

Yes, thanks. Section title corrected from something else to "Peace Dale Historic District". There seems to have been a merger proposal on the Peace Dale Historic District article, with link for discussion at Talk:Peace Dale, Rhode Island. doncram (talk) 18:21, 14 July 2009 (UTC)

Complete list of potential issues[edit]

It has been raised at Talk:Noank, Connecticut that there may be additional Rhode Island cases where NRHP HD names have been redirected to town/village/neighborhood articles and/or there have been possibly inappropriate mergers. Reviewing all the HD items in all of the RI NRHP list-articles, I mostly see very nice development of good stub articles, often including great photos. Out of hundreds of NRHP HD items, I see relatively few with potential issues, and list all 25 of them here. After some resolution is found for issues open at Talk:List of RHPs in CT, I suggest revisiting the following:

I checked every NRHP HD and that is the complete list of potential issues as i see it. doncram (talk) 15:27, 7 September 2009 (UTC)