A plaque remaining from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem.

Above, a 1934 plaque from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem. Discarded as trash in 2006.

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Entry from January 27, 2016
Rhode Island: Little Rhody (nickname)

Rhode Island is the smallest state (in physical area) in the United States. The nickname “Little Rhody” (also “"Little Rhodie,” “L’il Rhody” and “Little Rhode") reflects its small size. “Little Rhody” was first cited in print in 1825.


Wikipedia: Rhode Island
Rhode Island (/ˌroʊdˈaɪlənd/, officially the State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations, is a state in the New England region of the United States. Rhode Island is the smallest in area, the eighth least populous, and the second most densely populated (behind New Jersey) of the 50 U.S. states; its official name is also the longest of any state in the Union. Rhode Island is bordered by Connecticut to the west, Massachusetts to the north and east, and the Atlantic Ocean (via Rhode Island Sound and Block Island Sound) to the south.

RI.gov
The Nicknames
Little Rhody: A traditional nickname for Rhode Island, obviously in reference to the state’s small size. Rhode Island is the smallest of the 50 states in area. Variations include “Little Rhodie,” “L’il Rhody,” and “Little Rhode.”

The Smallest State: This sobriquet for Rhode Island, like the nickname “Little Rhody,” is in reference to Rhode Island’s size.

(Oxford English Dictionary)
Rhody, n.
U.S. colloq.
A nickname for: the state of Rhode Island. Chiefly in Little Rhody.
1825 Niles’ Weekly Reg. 17 Dec. 241/1 One of the senators from ‘Little Rhody’.
1858 Harper’s Mag. Jan. 279/1 ‘Little Rhody’ is ready with her contribution, and it has amused us mightily.
1861 Daily Cleveland (Ohio) Herald 18 Apr. (heading) Bully for ‘Rhody’... Volunteers are coming in rapidly from all parts of the State.

Google Books
17 December 1825, Niles’ Weekly Register, pg. 241, col. 1:
.. senator of the United States from the stale of Virginia, and will have a vote therein as well as one of the senators from “Little Rhody,” or either of those who come from what were “the three lower counties on Delaware.”

10 March 1834, Boston (MA) Morning Post, “Stenographic Gimples of Congress,” pg. 2, col. 1:
It is well known that little Rhody is the only State in the Union without a husband, viz.-— a constitution-—living in a condition of very questionable propriety, under the provision made for it by Charles H. A. D. 1663.

21 April 1835, New-Hampshire Gazette (Portsmouth, NH), “Rhode-Island Election,” pg. 3, col. 3:
Aye, the wigs of little Rhody are completely “rowed up Salt river,” a la Crockett.

15 June 1848, The Southern Patriot (Charleston, SC), “How Easy it is to Make a Fortune,” pg. 2, col. 4:
... and (with a smile of satisfaction shifting the crank to the other hand) one thousand for “Little Rhodie,” meaning RHode Island.

OCLC WorldCat record
“Little Rhody” soldiers “motto.” We live for the Union. We die for the Union. We will uphold the Union. ... Providence
Publisher: [New York] : Charles Magnus, 12 Frankfort St. N.Y., [between 1861 and 1865]
Series: Archive of Americana.; American broadsides and ephemera., Series 1 ;, no. 25328.
Edition/Format: Print book : Document Computer File : English

OCLC WorldCat record
“Little Rhody.” Providence R.I.
Author: Charles Magnus
Publisher: [New York] : Chas. Magnus, 12 Frankfort St., N.Y., [between 1861 and 1865]
Edition/Format: Print book : English

OCLC WorldCat record
Gallant “Little Rhody,” who has sent more soldiers to the war,
Publisher: VINCENNES, INDIANA
Edition/Format: Article Article
Publication: VINCENNES GAZETTE, (April 18, 1863)
Database: The Civil War: 1855-1869

Google Books
U. S.
An Index to the United States of America

Compiled by Malcolm Townsend
Boston, MA: D. Lothrop Company
1890
Pg. 72:
NICKNAMES OF THE STATES.
(...)
Rhode Island...Little Rhody...Being the littlest of the States.

3 June 1896, The Morning Herald (Lexington, KY), “The Nicknames of Twenty-Eight States of the Union,” pg. 6, col. 3:
Rhode Island over one hundred years ago was called “Little Rhody,” an allusion to the diminutive size of the Commonwealth.

OCLC WorldCat record
Statewatch: Rhode Island - Little Rhody in the red
Publisher: London : [Economist Newspaper Ltd., 1843-
Edition/Format: Article Article : English
Publication: The economist. 391, no. 8629, (2009): 45
Database: ArticleFirst

Posted by Barry Popik
Other ExpressionsOther States • Wednesday, January 27, 2016 • Permalink