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The Stephen Hopkins House

Who We Are

The Stephen Hopkins House was the home for over 40 years of Rhode Island's own Founding Father, Stephen Hopkins, Signer of the Declaration of Independence, his family and their slaves. Owned by the State of Rhode Island, it has been managed by the RI Society of Colonial Dames as a museum since 1929.

Our goal is to share the stories of Stephen Hopkins, and the women, children and slaves of his household, in a way that relates to our growing audience, over 3000 visitors last year, from most of the US and 44 other countries. 

America's history is everyone's story !  

Seniors, youth volunteers, all are welcome.                             

What We Do

Do you like people, love history, old houses, your community and your country? 

Do you value active citizenship? 

Be part of Benefit Street’s “mile of history” at the Stephen Hopkins House, leading tours for young & old, from around the corner or around the globe! Built in 1707 & 1742, this is Providence’s oldest house and first historic preservation success story, twice visited by George Washington.

It was the home from 1743 to 1785 of merchant, politician and Signer of the Declaration of Independence, Stephen Hopkins. Hopkins, his wife Sarah and 4 of their 7 children, second wife Anne, and her 3 children, and the slaves, Fibbo, St. Jago, Prince, Toney, Adam and Priamus, lived and worked here, through turbulent times in Rhode Island history.

Our visitors learn about the white and black lives led in these 8 small rooms, now furnished with period antiques & Hopkins family heirlooms. The SHH narrative explores the struggle for liberty, and for justice, to balance principles & self-interest, personal tragedy and political fervor, in a way that can be meaningful to people in any time, from anywhere.

History was not made by those who just sat on the couch & waited for others to do it!

Come help us -- improve your public-speaking skills while you share this complex & compelling story of leadership, service and activism, never more important than it is today, with visitors from all over the world!

Tour guides & greeters needed year-round on Wednesdays 11AM to 2PM, and April through November on Saturdays 10AM to 4PM, open til 10PM when it's a full lighting of Water Fire (last tour starts at 9:30)

Shifts are 3 hours (flexible) and there are stairs.