With the seeds of Revolution planted in the late 18th century, the Pawtuxet Rangers, or the Second Independent Company for the County of Kent, were chartered by the Colony of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations on Oct. 29, 1774 to protect the village of Pawtuxet.
More than 200 years later, Pawtuxet is under no threat, but the Rangers continue to march the village streets during Gaspee Days each year.
The unit was re-activated in 1972. The parade had already been established as an annual tradition, and the Gaspee Days Committee was in search of a local fife and drum corps. Two years later, in 1974, the Pawtuxet Rangers militia company was formed, and the fife and drums corps was later integrated with the militia. Today, the Pawtuxet Rangers are among the oldest chartered commands in the country, still operating under the original charter of 1774. The company includes a color guard, musket line and artillery, and the fife and drums corps.
The Rangers are always looking for new members. Annual dues are $25 per year, and students join for free through college. Militia members must be 18 or older, though fife and drum applicants can join at 16. The Pawtuxet Rangers meet every Wednesday at the Remington Street Armory at 8 p.m., and participate in parades, encampments, battles and ceremonial functions throughout the year.
For more information on getting involved, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.pawtuxetrangers.com.