1. Proceedings of the Rhode Island Constitutional Convention of 1973. Providence: Oxford Press, 1973.
  2. Catholicism in Rhode Island: The Formative Era (with Matthew J. Smith). Providence: Diocese of Providence, 1976.

    “This is a solid and significant historical analysis of the growth of Roman Catholicism in Rhode Island from the 1820's to 1872 when the diocese of Providence was formed. The authors, both historians at Providence College, portray sensitively major developments during this half-century, including the Dorr Rebellion (1842), the hanging of John Gordon (1845, ‘the Rhode Island version of Sacco-Vanzetti’), and the repeated epidemics of blatant nativism, that fever fanned by the cartoons of Thomas Nast, many of which are here reproduced. The story includes the inevitable ‘bricks and mortar’ element, but this is always seen in the context of a broader social and cultural history. A striking analysis of nineteenth-century Irish Catholicism, both in Ireland and in America, constitutes one of the book’s most visible assets. The lengthy bibliographical essay is up to date, discriminating, and thorough, while the more than one hundred illustrations are simply superb. More often should local denominational history be so lucky.”

    Edwin S. Gaustad, Religious Studies Review

    “A beautifully printed book and well deserving of all the scholarly kudos it has received for its contents.”

    John Appel, Professor of Immigration History,
    Michigan State University

    “A wonderful and much-needed addition to our understanding of Rhode Island. Magnificently illustrated and eminently readable. It corrects past errors, fills in missing gaps, and carries the reader through a wide swath of Rhode Island’s early ethnic history. I have never seen the Know-Nothing Movement better told in any state history.”

    William B. McLoughlin, Professor of History, Brown University

    “. . . a sweeping narrative and unusually handsomely illustrated book about one of Rhode Island’s principal religious faiths . . . the book is a model work in all respects . . .”

    Albert T. Klyberg, Director, Rhode Island Historical Society

    “For a group gift, or a class to a teacher, perhaps, there could be no finer gift idea in books than one that will not pass with time or interest of a moment. It is an investment in history, a fine appearing as well as invaluable reading experience. Something that will be a ‘forever.’ ”

    Barbara C. Jencks, The Providence Visitor

    “The authors have succeeded in presenting a history that appeals to the general reader without burdening him with academic paraphernalia. Yet, they have not neglected to provide for the scholar an extensive bibliographical essay with many significant and updated sources for further research. That they sought to avoid the trap or concentrating solely on religion as the key to church history is highly commendable, especially in their analysis of the Irish as the leading Catholic group in the period covered by their study. This history easily supplants the one by Austin Dowling and the other by Thomas F. Cullen as the authentic one on Catholicism in Rhode island down to 1872.”

    Vincent A. Lapomarda, S.J., Catholic Historical Review

    “The volume is very well done, both from the professional and the aesthetic point of view . . . a first-rate piece of work!”

    Emmet Larkin, Professor of History, The University of Chicago

    “The authors intended to write a ‘popular history designed for the general reader’ and they have succeeded. For the professional historian the book is most valuable in its presentation of local political, social, and religious history. It is a good blend of all three genres, well written, richly illustrated, and historically sound.”

    Jay P. Dolan, The Journal of American History

  3. Democracy in Decline: Rhode Island’s Constitutional Development, 1776–1841. Providence: Rhode Island Historical Society, 1977.

    “I believe that Democracy in Decline: Rhode Island’s Constitutional Development, 1776–1841, is the finest Rhode Island history book ever written.”

    Christian M. McBurney, Historian, attorney, and principal editor
    of the
    On-Line Review of Rhode Island History

    “Patrick T. Conley’s Democracy in Decline: Rhode Island’s Constitutional Development, 1776–1841 is a valuable book that demonstrates the maturity of Rhode Island scholarship. The author has made judicious use of the entire list of secondary publications and has completed an exhaustive review of the manuscript evidence. His work provides an excellent synthesis while breaking new ground with respect to our understanding of the antecedents of the famous Dorr Rebellion of 1842.”

    “The major contribution of Democracy in Decline may be found in Conley’s outstanding treatment of the coming of the Dorr Rebellion and his cogent analysis of the final outcome of almost four decades of constitutional turmoil in a lengthy epilogue. Of special value are the insights that the author adds to what we know about the contrary forces that were locked in the struggle that erupted into America’s most famous example of democratic insurrection. Conley’s isolation of the impact of ‘ethno-religious sentiments’ and his description of the interactions between state and national events provide a perspective on the Dorr Rebellion that should enable his analysis to supersede every previous account.”

    Irwin H. Polishook, William and Mary Quarterly

    “Professor Conley’s study is likely to become the standard account. Valuable are the many corrections on matters of fact and interpretation. Indeed, many footnotes are gemlike historiographical essays. Conley has provided a clear, thoughtful, and objective account of a constitutional struggle which stirred great passion at the time and which, even today, evokes historical partisanship. Democracy in Decline is first-rate.”

    Peter J. Coleman, New England Quarterly

    “Conley’s book warrants careful reading by scholars and laymen alike, for it deals with ideas and issues central to the history of American Civilization.”

    George M. Dennison, American Historical Review

    “Conley’s volume, augmented by an extensive bibliography, is now the standard secondary work in the field.” Choice

    “This is an excellent study. The depth of Conley’s research is at times astounding (though not really surprising). Bravo. The author’s handling of the historical literature is one of the major strengths of this study.”

    Glenn W. LaFantasie, Editor, Rhode Island History

    “The scope, the comprehensive research, the careful utilization of earlier scholarship, and attention to detail will make Conley’s book valuable for many years to come.”

    Sydney V. James, University of Iowa, The American Journal of Legal History

    “Conley’s scholarship is meticulous. Extensive research in primary sources is accompanied by an attempt to see Rhode Island’s problems in a somewhat broader historical and historiographical context than is seen in many state studies.”

    Phyllis F. Field, Ohio University, The Journal of American History

  4. Providence: A Pictorial History (with Paul R. Campbell). Norfolk, VA: Donning Company, 1982.

    Providence: A Pictorial History is more than just another book about Rhode Island’s capital city. It is the one book, of all the volumes that have been written, that captures the true essence of the unique city of Providence.” “Indeed, this is more than just another local history book. It is more like a journey through the past, through our own pasts and that of the city. It is a keepsake, to be enjoyed now and handed down for future generations, so that they, too, might remember.”

    James Anderson, East Side Monthly

    “The history of Providence from its colonial beginnings to the present has always commanded interest worldwide. Many works have been written about the city, ranging from its intriguing architecture (John C. Cady and Antoinette Downing), the quaintness of its streets (Margaret Stillwell), the lay of its land (J. G. Beers), its modes of transportation (D. Scott Molloy), and a host of general interest books relating to is economy, culture, religion, and government.”

    “Despite all this, there was a need for one book that covers all these subjects with updated information and a veritable portfolio of vintage illustrations, photographs and graphics — an appealing and readable pictorial history. The need has been met by historian Patrick Conley and Paul Campbell (librarian of the R.I. Historical Society), who have given us an archival masterwork. . .a top-rate publication befit to outshine all previous publications concerning the general history of the City of Providence.”

    Roy Collins, Editor, Rhode Island Review Quarterly

    “In just three years, Providence will celebrate its three hundred and fiftieth birthday, a longevity surpassing that of most of the world’s countries. Reproducing the city’s extensive history would be a herculean task, but in Providence, A Pictorial History, Patrick T. Conley and Paul R. Campbell have attempted such a task by proving the old adage that a picture is worth a thousand words. By amassing over four hundred photographs, maps, and illustrations and including substantial commentaries on each, the authors have produced a book that is both refreshing and enigmatic. Until recently, few historians had ever taken advantage of the rich graphic archives that some libraries and historical societies had collected, and those who did used the materials for illustrative purposes rather than as historical documents. Conley and Campbell, however, have ably mined the magnificent graphics collections of the Rhode Island Historical Society, plus a few smaller collections, and they have tried to use the illustrations to convey things that readers cannot get in other ways. In addition to the myriad engaging pictures and useful commentaries, Conley and Campbell include a brief appendix on mayors and population figures and a very thorough annotated bibliography of works on Providence history. To their credit, the authors made a commitment to history rather than to art; instead of letting aesthetics determine their choice of illustrations, they obviously based selections on historical relevance. Though the format, with its episodic pictures and unconnected commentaries, precludes substantial interpretation, Providence, A Pictorial History portrays the long and twisted history of a fascinating city with flair and exuberance.

    Howard P. Chaudacoff, Brown University, Rhode Island History

  5. The Aurora Club of Rhode Island: A Fifty-Year History (with Paul R. Campbell). Providence: Privately printed, 1982.
  6. Rhode Island Profile, Providence: Rhode Island Publications Society, 1982.
  7. Fires and Firefighters in Providence, 1754–1984: A Pictorial History of the Providence Fire Department (with Paul R. Campbell). Providence: Rhode Island Publications Society, 1985. Revised edition, 2002.

    “This beautifully done book is fascinating reading and looking. Everything about the design and content of this book says QUALITY.”

    Firefighters Bookstore Catalog

    “There are published histories of fire departments, and then there are outstanding published histories. Firefighters and Fires in Providence is one of the latter. It is far above average in fire department histories — perhaps because of the men who collaborated on it.”

    Firehouse Magazine

    “One of the best fire histories recently published . . . a real gem.”

    Engine Magazine

    Firefighters and Fires in Providence traces the history of our department with great accuracy and with an understanding of the traditions and heritage of the second oldest professional fire department in America. The selection of photographs, the descriptive captions, and the crisp historical reporting make this book not only a pleasure to read but a keepsake for all of our citizens to possess.” “I know that all firefighters will treasure this book, which recounts a part of their lives; that they will peruse it often, and that it will reinforce their great pride in a department that is second in quality to none.”

    Vincent A. Cianci, Jr., Mayor of Providence, from the Foreword

  8. The Irish in Rhode Island: A Historical Appreciation. Providence: Rhode Island Heritage Commission, 1986.
  9. An Album of Rhode Island History, 1636–1986. Norfolk: Donning Company, 1986. Reprinted with additions, 1992 and 2000.

    “By keeping this Album available to those who seek to know and understand Rhode Island history, the General Assembly believes that it is providing a useful resource for state history classes in our schools, a tool for those interested in promoting Rhode Island to those contemplating business or personal settlement here, an authoritative reference for Rhode Islanders interested in the major facts pertaining to their state’s history, and a treasured memento for official visitors to the Ocean State.”

    “On May 4, 2000, I chose Dr. Conley to deliver the Millennium Address to the General Assembly as we convened in Newport’s historic Colony House, the principal seat of state government for 160 years until the completion of our present State House in 1900. It is also fitting, in view of our reverence and respect for Rhode Island history, that the General Assembly sponsor this Millennium Edition of Dr. Conley’s fascinating and comprehensive portrait of our state’s development.”

    John B. Harwood, Speaker of the House of Representatives

  10. First in War, Last in Peace: Rhode Island and the Constitution, 1786–1790. Providence: Rhode Island Bicentennial Foundation, 1987.
  11. The Colony and State Houses of Rhode Island: An Architectural and Historical Study (with Robert O. Jones and William McKenzie Woodward). Providence: Rhode Island Historical Society, 1988, rev. ed. (1986–2013), 2013.
  12. The Constitution and the States: The Role of the Original Thirteen in the Framing and Adoption of the Constitution (with John P. Kaminski). Madison, WI: Madison House Publishers, 1988. Winner of the 1993 Fraunces Tavern Museum Book Award from the Sons of the American Revolution.

    “Indeed, all those interested in the institutions which secure our liberty will profit from this volume.”

    From the Foreword by Warren E. Burger, Chair, U.S. Commission on the Bicentennial of the Constitution, and Chief Justice of the United States, 1969–1986.

    “During this bicentennial period, much has been written about the Constitution and its history. These essays by eminent historians, brought together by Patrick Conley and John Kaminski, are unique in analyzing the important contributions of each of the thirteen original states to America’s fundamental charter.

    The Constitution and the States offers many illuminating insights into the challenges and compromises that succeeded — and succeeded brilliantly — in welding those thirteen states into a new and united nation.”

    U.S. Senator Edward M. Kennedy

    “For the close student of our Constitution, an indispensable volume. A measured and careful exposition of the ratification as it occurred — one state at a time. . . . The best book on its subject to found anywhere.”

    M. E. Bradford, Professor of English, University of Dallas. Author of A Worthy Company: Brief Lives of the Framers of the United States Constitution.

    “This book packages scholarly originality in a sprightly narrative. . . . The Bicentennial has sparked a number of studies on the Constitution; this is among the best.”

    Norman K. Risjord, Professor of History, University of Wisconsin

    The Constitution and the States is good popular history. General readers will find it attractive and sustaining; professional historians might be teased to further reflection about both the content and the presentation; all likely will draw contrasts and comparisons that will enrich understanding of the state perspectives and contributions during the key epoch spanned by this volume.”

    “Coeditor, Patrick T. Conley’s sweeping, balanced, and lucid bibliographic essay bringing up the rear of the volume is superb. More than a mere annotated listing, it is a masterful treatment of the historiography of the framing and ratification of the Constitution. Monographic and periodical literature are surveyed, covering nearly a century of writing about the Constitution. Moreover, important published primary sources as well as bibliographies and other reference tools bearing upon the Constitution are included. For this bibliographical essay alone the volume is worth its price!”

    John W. Larner, The Journal of American History

    “The debate over the Constitution is usually cast in homogenized, national terms. The chief virtue of this volume is that it brings the specific concerns of local interest groups and political factions to the fore, thus providing a salutary corrective to the conventional focus on broad constitutional and ideological changes.”

    “What does “nationalism” — or “federalism” — mean in the American founding era? Could state leaders welcome a stronger central government without “totally surrendering” to it? The Constitution and the States provides an excellent point of departure for addressing these crucially important and too often neglected questions.”

    Peter S. Onuf, Journal of Southern History

    “A marvelous volume that could and should bring the Constitution closer to a very broad audience indeed. The sponsors can be proud of the authors, editors, and publisher for a book which from binding to dust jacket exudes the highest quality of scholarship and mechanics.”

    Frank C. Mevers, Historical New Hampshire

    “In this new and much needed work, editors Patrick T. Conley and John P. Kaminski seek to redress an imbalance in the historiography of the creation of the American Constitution. Studies by scholars and public historians, including the best of the recent work fostered by the bicentennial, have traditionally focused on the federal convention in Philadelphia and the ideologies of its renowned participants at the expense of the equally important struggle for ratification in each of the original states of the American Confederation. As these editors remind us, “Not only was the role of the states central in the framing, ratifying, and revising of the Constitution, but the new federal Constitution was permeated with the influence of state constitutions and local precedents.”

    “The book ends with two essays by editor Patrick T. Conley. His study of Rhode Island in the Confederation (always one of the most intriguing stories in this saga) is masterfully done, as is his very helpful bibliography, “Posterity Views the Founding General Published Works Pertaining to the Creation of the Constitution.”

    E. Lee Shepard, The Virginia Magazine

    “The collection is extremely valuable for highlighting the particular social and economic circumstances in the states that led to demands for a new federal government and for exposing the machinations used by the Federalists in obtaining ratification. And it confirms the fact that local issues were at lest as important as national ones in determining who supported and who rejected the Constitution.”

    Rosemarie Zagarri, Journal of the Early Republic

    “Casual readers will find much of interest in these quick-paced accounts of each state’s revolutionary heritage, although the format inevitably produces thirteen separate accounts of the Mount Vernon, Annapolis, and Philadelphia conclaves. Scholars will appreciate Patrick Conley’s thirty-five page bibliographic essay.”

    “These essays admirably reflect the diversity of purpose and experience that guided each state through the Revolution.”

    John Lauritz Larson, The North Carolina Historical Review

    “Patrick T. Conley contributes both a chapter on Rhode Island and a fine bibliographical essay on the historiography of the Constitution.” “The best essays in the volume provide an analytical framework to understand state politics, rather than simply offer an overview of events and issues. Mary Murrin’s essay on New Jersey, Christopher Collier’s on Connecticut, Gregory Stiverson’s on Maryland, and Patrick Conley’s on Rhode Island, are especially insightful.”

    David E. Narret, New York History

  13. The Bill of Rights and the States: The Colonial and Revolutionary Origins of American Liberties (with John P. Kaminski). Madison, WI: Madison House Publishers, 1992. Winner of the 1993 Fraunces Tavern Museum Book Award from the Sons of the American Revolution.

    “Designed to appeal to the general reader, all the essays are workmanlike and accessible, all are conventional, none offering an innovative or imaginative approach. To their credit, the authors avoid the homilcctie, and the essays by Murrin, Nadelshaft, Fox, and Conley stand out. Each essay ends with a one-page critical assessment of the sources for its state. An extensive bibliographic essay closes the volume.”

    Milton Cantor, Choice Magazine

    “With its enormous wealth of information, the real strength of this volume is as a reference work. The colonial and early state stories are all clearly told, though, unfortunately, not footnoted. But the bibliographical essays are splendid, with exhaustive listings of legal and historical studies for each of the first ten amendments to the Constitution as well as for the general background. The volume is, therefore, essential for all students of the Bill of Rights.”

    J. C. A. Stagg, Papers of James Madison, University of Virginia

    “As this book makes clear, there was no single path to the federal Bill of Rights. By examining the history of fundamental rights in the various states from Massachusetts to Georgia, this significant volume reveals the varied path — from Puritanism to Quakerism to Enlightenment thought — that went into Americans’ original understanding of natural law and fundamental liberties.”

    “While the essays are generally based on secondary literature, they are written by scholars fully versed in both the subject of rights and their geographical area. Consequently, this book will serve as a basic and indispensable reference for many years to come. It allows undergraduate, graduate, and law students, as well as professors of history and law, quick and accurate access to the most recent and relevant interpretations of the Bill of Rights in both the federal context and the different states. The chapters are well written and accessible and the bibliographic apparatus is excellent, including the lengthy bibliographical essay by Gaspare J. Saladino.”

    Howard B. Rock, The North Carolina Historical Review

    “During the bicentennial of the United States Constitution and the Bill of Rights, many asked whether that celebration would yield a body of enduring scholarly work. It is now clear that the answer to that question is a resounding yes.”

    “One of the most productive alliances of the recent bicentennial era was that between the U.S. Constitution Council of the Thirteen Original States and the Center for the Study of the American Constitution at the University of Wisconsin, Madison. The volume under review results from that cooperation. The set formed by this volume and its predecessor, The Constitution and the States (1988), is an invaluable research resource and teaching tool for the study of the colonial and early national constitutional history of the United States.”

    Charlene Bickford, The Virginia Magazine

    “The bicentennial celebration, with its outpouring of books and articles on the American founding, is now over. The final cascade of publications dealt with the U. S. Bill of Rights, and among the last of them came this volume. It is one of the best and most useful works of the entire bicentennial literature. For several reasons, this book could be a useful addition to the bookshelves of almost any academic.”

    Donald S. Lutz, Publius

    “As a bibliographic resource for the Bill of Rights and rights in colonial America this book will be indispensable to scholars.”

    James H. Hutson, The Journal of Southern History

  14. Liberty and Justice: A History of Law and Lawyers in Rhode Island, 1636–1998. Providence: Rhode Island Publications Society, 1998.

    “This compilation was commissioned as the defining work in celebration of the 100th anniversary of the Rhode Island Bar Association. It is an excellent symbol not only of the centennial of the organized bar but of 362 years of Rhode Island legal history. No portion of the centennial observance and celebration will be of such enduring value as this book. On behalf of the Rhode Island judiciary and the members of the bar of this state, I express our deep appreciation to Dr. Patrick T. Conley for his magnificent effort and splendid literary achievement.”

    Joseph R. Weisberger, Chief Justice, Rhode Island Supreme Court

    “Despite the self-sufficiency of each essay and excerpt, there is a common thread that holds this work together. This is due in part to the excellent job Professor Conley has done in choosing (and in many instances, writing) these individual works, and due in part to the insightful introductions that precede them. We owe Professor Conley a debt of gratitude for putting this history together and giving us a work that helps us to understand the rich history of Rhode Island law and lawyers and the government that our predecessors helped mold. This richly illustrated book gives the reader a sense of what makes Rhode Island unique.”

    Robert S. Thurston, Esq., Rhode Island Bar Journal

    Liberty and Justice is a noteworthy compilation of essays covering a wide spectrum of Rhode Island’s political and legal history. The book provides readers with a unique opportunity to learn about this state’s historical foundations, legal development and evolving institutions. As such, Liberty and Justice is a valuable text for legal scholars, law students and legal practitioners alike.”

    Roger Williams University Law Review

    “Patrick Conley, a Providence College history professor and lawyer known to many for his leadership of several Rhode island heritage preservation efforts, has brought together a number of essays, many of them his own, that present the state’s legal history in who-done-it style. The result is a surprisingly lively and absorbing volume in which our state comes off well, warts and all.”

    Governor Bruce Sundlun, Providence Journal

  15. Neither Separate nor Equal: Legislature and Executive in Rhode Island Constitutional History. Providence: Rhode Island Publications Society, 1999.

    “I was more than pleasantly surprised that I could not put this book down. That Conley has written a very thoughtful and insightful book cannot be characterized as unusual. He is among all other things, a Man of Letters, and in this case, his letters bring loud and resonant calls for some closure on this convoluted but crucial issue facing Rhode Island government. For this, he should be congratulated. Here’s hoping that, in addition to his trilogy, he continues to publish works on historical issues, his one true gift.”

    William J. Delaney, Esq., Rhode Island Bar Journal

    “Conley provides an exhaustive bibliography of published and unpublished authorities, as well as extensive excerpts from the amici briefs. He provides many acute personal observations about the supporters and opponents of structural reform in Rhode Island.”

    “The book was published prior to the Supreme Court’s decision, In re: Advisory Opinion to the Governor. In its decision, the Court held that Regulation 5014 violated “two basic constitutional principles.” First, the Court said that the regulations presumed the guilt of all members of the General Assembly, contrary to a basic tenet of American justice. Second, the Court said that the Commission had no authority, by regulation, to restructure and reorganize the constitutional framework of Rhode Island government. In the end, Conley the advocate, as well as historian, prevailed.”

    Neither Separate Nor Equal adds an important book to Conley’s extensive oeuvre and his well-deserved eminence as an authority on Rhode Island history.”

    Neil H. Cogan, Whittier Law School,
    The American Journal of Legal History

  16. Rhode Island in Rhetoric and Reflection, Providence: Rhode Island Publications Society, 2002.

    “Whatever Patrick T. Conley sets out to do, he does masterfully-whether that be teaching, public speaking, practicing law, developing real estate, performing on the athletic field, volunteering his expert organizational skills, ghostwriting political position papers, or writing history. The latter is his passion. He has a profound grasp of American history and his bibliographic knowledge is breathtaking. In this, his latest volume, Conley is at his best in offering an astonishing array of Rhode Island history. This tiniest of states has played a significant role in the country’s development, much of which is analyzed with great insight in the varied pieces in this volume.”

    “With his usual fidelity to the highest standards of scholarship, Conley examines here constitutional history from colonial and Revolutionary times, to the nineteenth-century upheaval of Dorr’s Rebellion, to Rhode Island’s twentieth-century constitutional conventions. He deftly investigates religious history, nativism, ethnic studies, sports history, local history, and biography. Throughout these offerings Conley’s charm, wit, and humor shine through. Many of these pieces were either delivered as speeches or printed in out-of-the way publications. This volume pulls together these disparate “words . . . written on the wind” and makes them readily available to a broad audience. Undeniably, Pat Conley is the greatest historian of Rhode Island ever. This book helps prove that fact.”

    John P. Kaminski, Director of The Center for the Study
    of the American Constitution and Editor of
    The Documentary History
    of the Ratification of the Constitution

    “These are wonderful essays on the history of Rhode Island by the premier historian of Rhode Island. With wit, clarity, and an extraordinary command of historical Information, Patrick T. Conley has covered all aspects of Rhode Island history from its earliest origins in the seventeenth century to the beginning of the twenty-first century. There are essays on Rhode island constitutionalism (Conley’s specialty), on immigration and ethnicity, on Rhode Island sports, on Catholicism, and on a wide variety of the Ocean State’s local scenes and colorful characters. The beauty of collections like this Is that they preserve what otherwise might be lost. And Conley’s writings are worth preserving. He is a treasure.”

    Gordon S. Wood, Alva O. Way Professor of History, Brown University,
    Winner of the Pulitzer Prize in History

    “The stream of books written by Pat Conley, with their wealth of commentary on the state from almost every imaginable perspective, is truly a treasure trove. We his Contemporaries, but also generations to come, will find this wealth of material indispensable to an understanding of what Rhode Island was and has become. We owe him a great debt.”

    Elmer E. Cornwell, Jr., Professor of Political Science, Brown University

    “Dr. Patrick Conley, the dean of Rhode Island historians, has gathered together into one volume sixty of his occasional writings and speeches on the history of the colony and state. They display great erudition and learning, and, what is just as important, an accessible writing style that will engage every type of reader from the scholar to the lay resident interested in the history of the state.”

    Jack P. Greene, Andrew W. Mellon Professor in the Humanities,
    Johns Hopkins University

    “This book is a thoughtful compilation of the works of Dr. Patrick T. Conley — our foremost Rhode Island historian and my former professor at Providence College. No one has a more complete and thorough understanding of the characters and culture that compose our state’s unique history. Dr. Conley is not only a Rhode Island treasure, his writing and teaching about all aspects of American history, especially our Constitution, make him a national treasure.”

    Patrick J. Kennedy, Member of Congress

    “A true tour de force of Rhode Island history by its most capable observer and historian. Any resident or student of our state, whith its long and winding story, will be rewarded by Patrick Conley’s legendary breadth of knowledge.”

    Robert E. McCarthy, Professor of History, Providence College

    “In Rhode Island in Rhetoric and Reflection, Dr. Patrick Conley releases the reader from a foggy appreciation of Rhode island roots to a vivid understanding of the basis of the very tenets we hold most dear in twenty-first century life in the Ocean State. The authoritativeness of the essays, the pithy observations, and Pat’s remarkable word craftsmanship make this read a joy.”

    Halsey C. Herreshoff, President, America’s Cup Hall of Fame; President, Herreshoff Marine Museum, Bristol

    “Conley covers all aspects of Rhode Island history as well as its social and ethnic underpinnings. The story of Rhode Island leaps from the pages in readable and dramatic form. This book alone provides a reader with encyclopedic knowledge of our little paradise, with its glories as well as its shortcomings.”

    Joseph R. Weisberger, Chief Justice, Rhode Island Supreme Court (Retired)

    “For nearly four decades Dr. Patrick T. Conley has been Rhode Island’s most consistent and hard-working public intellectual. His work illuminates not only the big parts of Rhode Island history but the intriguing byways and alleys as well.”

    Jay S. Goodman, Professor of Political Science, Wheaton College; Attorney-at-Law

    “Author Dr. Patrick T. Conley has been regarded as the ‘premiere historian of Rhode Island.’ Rep. Patrick J. Kennedy has dubbed Conley both a ‘Rhode Island and National Treasure.’ Conley, a Bristol attorney, real estate developer, educator and historian, has recently published his 16th book, Rhode Island in Rhetoric and Reflection: Public Addresses and Essays. It has deservedly earned high praise from prestigious and learned colleagues.”

    “The great selling point of the book is the story-book-like approach to Conley’s narrative. In these times when reading and reflecting on history seems anathema to many Americans, Conley’s entertaining and informative writing certainly proves that when interesting topics are presented in a readable and enjoyable style, the reading of history can be rewarding and pleasurable.”

    Kathleen Currie, Westerly Sun

    “The book as a whole makes appreciation of history enjoyable without diluting the scholarly rigor of the craft. The groupings of materials move easily from big picture overviews to finely textured detail and back again. A remarkable collection of illustrations from many archival collections adds to the already vivid writing style and a exhaustive index shows how certain people, places and themes have recurred in Conley’s works.” “Few can match Conley’s rhetoric, but all will have enriched their reflections on Rhode Island after reading this book.”

    Jerry Cohen, Esq., Rhode Island Bar Journal

  17. The Battle of Rhode Island, August 29, 1778: Victory for the Patriots. Rhode Island Publications Society, 2005.
  18. South Providence: The Origins and Heyday of an Ethnic Neighborhood, 1832–1968 (with Paul R. Campbell) Portsmouth, NH: Arcadia Publishing, 2006.
  19. The Rhode Island State Constitution: A Reference Guide (with Robert G. Flanders, Jr.) Westport, CT: Praeger Publishers, 2007. Reprinted by Oxford University Press.

    “This Rhode Island volume is the final word on the oft fought-over Rhode Island basic document.

    The authors are uniquely qualified to present this work. Patrick Conley has more lives than most Renaissance men — entrepreneur, political activist, scholar, and most recently, Providence waterfront developer. Whatever else he was doing, over the more than forty years I have known him , he has painstakingly researched and written about Rhode Island constitutional law, not to mention collecting and archiving numerous original documents.”

    “Of course, in a typical Rhode Island fillip, Conley creates true, post-modernist problems of perspective. He is more than a chronicler of Rhode Island’s political battles with a Notre Dame Ph.D. He was also a participant in most of the constitutional conventions since 1964, authored numerous constitutional articles in those sessions, and fought for them inside and outside the meetings. On top of that, he has been an attorney in forty Supreme Court cases.”

    “The simple truth is that Conley has created the modern field of Rhode Island constitutional history.”

    Jay S. Goodman, Esq., Professor of Political Science, Wheaton College, and a Rhode Island lawyer and lobbyist

    “The guide delves into the state’s constitutional development, with an emphasis on the historical evolution of the state’s law. An added bonus, Conley and Flanders critique Supreme Court rulings throughout the state’s history and include suggestions for change.”

    Rhode Island Lawyers Weekly

  20. Rhode Island’s Founders: From Settlement to Statehood. Charleston, SC: The History Press, 2010.

    “Dr. Patrick Conley isone of Rhode Island’s preeminent historians. He is the last word (and probably the first as well) on all things Rhode Island. Rhode Island’s Founders is a surprisingly quick read, dense with history but also with entertaining anecdotes and rumors that keep it moving. Even if you’re not a history buff, the book is full of conversation-worthy facts that will make you sound legit to any Rhode Islaphile who happens to be lurking in the corner.”

    Michael Madden, Providence Monthly

    “The book is like a Cliff’s Note of early Rhode Island history. While it is not the complete history of any of the people he highlights, it is a worthy tool for any historian. The book, after all, is only 160 pages.”

    “It’s kind of like a field guide for armchair historians and collectors. It gives you strong biographical information, the historical period, and information about what made them important. Having all that information in one quick handy reference book is quite nice. It puts the profiled person in context within Rhode Island history without having to sift through several sources that might only have one or two references.”

    “This book should be in any student’s library, if there are such things in this day in age.”

    David Smith, Westerly Sun, April 1, 2010

    “If you have ever wondered if there was such a thing as concise history — a really concise — history of Rhode Island available, Rhode Island historian Patrick T. Conley has published it. Out this year, Rhode Island’s Founders: From Settlement to Statehood (The History Press) covers the early days of Roger Williams up through the earliest days of statehood to 1790.”

    “A trade paperback with less than 150 pages of actual text could hardly be expected to satisfy the serious student of history, but Conley has managed to meet the expectations of the average intelligent reader by supplying just enough detail about the personalities and the times for acquiring a deeper understanding of how and why Rhode Island came into being, or more precisely, came to be the way it is.

    Joe Kernan, Warwick Beacon

  21. Constitution Day: Reflections by Respected Scholars. Providence: Rhode Island Publications Society, 2010.

    “The subtitle ofthis small volume delivers even more than it implies. The book is a compilation of twelve Constitution Day addresses by noted legal and constitutional scholars given in Rhode Island. Constitution Day, September 17, is the anniversary of the signing of the federal Constitution in 1787 by thirty-nine delegates at the Philadelphia convention’s conclusion. These Constitution Day observances, beginning in 2000 and concluding in 2009, were hosted by noted historian, lawyer, editor, and real estate developer Patrick T. Conley and his wife, Gail Cahalan Conley, at Gale Winds, the Conley’s Bristol, Rhode Island estate, and at Conley’s Wharf, another of the hosts’ properties, in Providence. The high regard and long and friendly acquaintances the Conleys have earned in the academic world undoubtedly precipitated the participation of so many celebrated authorities.”

    “As contributor and editor, Conley deserves the thanks of everyone interested in the constitutional development of the United States and of Rhode Island, about which Conley is the leading authority. Constitution Day: Reflections by Respected Scholars deserves to be on the shelf of every public library, as well as in college, university, and law school libraries across the United States.”

    Oline Carmichal, Jr., The Journal of Southern History

    “This published volume contains twelve commentaries on the Federal Constitution, each with an afterword by Conley providing a Rhode Island focus to the federal issue. There is a lot here that is self-referential, including his event sponsorship and gracious hosting with his wife, as well as photographs with his six former dissertation students from Providence College and of his 7,000 volume private library. The published remarks also contain the informal complements and little jokes of participants who know each other very well. But, as its core, the volume is a serious festschrift, with the honoree being the Constitution of the United States.”

    Jay S. Goodman, Esq., Rhode Island Bar Journal

  22. People, Places, Laws, and Lore of the Ocean State. Providence: Rhode Island Publications Society, 2012.

    “Patrick T. Conley, the historian laureate of Rhode Island, has compiled a wide-ranging collection of 46 engaging and insightful essays on Rhode Island history.”

    “Conley includes several informative essays on the seacoast community [of Bristol]. Of special interest is an essay on the historical significance of the Battle of Rhode Island in August 1778. Conley has been advocating for years, unfortunately to no avail, for the state to build a monument on Butt’s Hill in Portsmouth (adjacent to the high school) commemorating the decisive battle that saved Gen. John Sullivan’s 5,000 man army.”

    Dr. Erik Chaput, Providence Journal

  23. Makers of Modern Rhode Island. Charleston, SC: The History Press, 2012.

    “Picking up where Rhode Island’s Founders left off Dr. Patrick T. Conley, Rhode Island’s preeminent historian and president of the Rhode Island Heritage Hall of Fame, takes us through the Ocean State’s history from 1790 to 1860. This volume includes colorful biographical sketches of fifty-six influential Rhode Islanders who helped shape the state’s urban and industrial development into the modern Rhode Island of today.”

    Dr. Erik Chaput, Providence Journal

  24. The Rhode Island Homefront in the Civil War Era (with Frank Williams). Nashua, NH: Taos Press, 2013.

    “Frank J. Williams, retired chief justice of the Rhode Island Supreme Court and one of the nation’s top Lincoln scholars, and Patrick T. Conley, the dean of Rhode Island historians and the author of more than 25 books on the history of the Ocean State, have edited an informative and engaging volume on the Civil War home front that will be of interest to students and scholars alike.”

    Dr. Erik J. Chaput, Providence Journal

  25. Aboard the Fabre Line to Providence: Immigration to Rhode Island (with William Jennings). Charleston, SC: The History Press, 2013.

    “Patrick T. Conley, the dean of Rhode Island historians, and William Jennings Jr., a longtime secondary educator in the state, have written an engaging book that not only details the history of the Fabre Line, but also the history of 20th-century immigration.”

    Aboard the Fabre Line to Providence is a beautifully illustrated book with dozens of photographs and sketches from The Providence Journal, the Providence City Archives, the Rhode Island Historical Society and Conley’s private collection. At the end of the handsome volume, readers will find a series of tables that detail the totals for passenger traffic to and from Providence, information on the ports of destination for those passengers departing the United States, and information on the construction, career and destruction of the 11 Fabre Line vessels that visited State Pier Number 1.”

    Dr. Erik J. Chaput, Providence Journal

    “Nicely illustrated, with images drawn mostly from Conley’s private collection and enriched by an impressive appendix that provides considerable detail on Rhode Island’s immigrants, this is a well- crafted, well-documented account of local history that helps us to better comprehend the full fabric of the American immigration experience.”

    William M. Fowler, Jr., New England Quarterly

    “Even though this book is about immigrants and immigration to Rhode Island, it should not be seen as covering a topic out of the main stream of maritime history. The wealth of detail in the narrative and the appendices enhances our knowledge of maritime activity at a secondary port. The book also shows the impact that Fabre Line’s immigrant trade had on Rhode Island. And of broader significance, it focuses attention on the importance of the immigrant trade to all transatlantic lines, large and small. The appendices include yearly totals of passenger sailings from Providence and New York, the states in which immigrants intended to settle, arrivals and departures of all Fabre vessels at Providence between 1911 and 1934, and genealogies of all eleven Fabre passen­ger vessels that called at Providence. There are also ample explanatory foot­notes, a bibliography, and many photos of Fabre ships, Fabre memo­rabilia, individuals connected with the port of Providence, and notable immigrants.”

    Martin J. Butler, Power Ships: The Magazine of the Steamship Historical Society of America

  26.   27. 28. The Documentary History of the Ratification of the Constitution, Rhode Island Series, 3 volumes, Madison: Wisconsin Historical Society Press, 2011–13. Volume 3 is dedicated to Patrick T. Conley with the following acknowledgment:

    This final of three Rhode Island volumes can only be dedicated to one person — Dr. Patrick T. Conley, the first historian laureate of Rhode Island. For more than fifty years no one has written more extensively on Rhode Island. His expertise in the political, economic, legal, constitutional, religious, local, and biographical history of Rhode Island is remarkable. His bibliographic knowledge of the Founding Era is extensive and perhaps unmatched. The Ratification project has been fortunate to have Dr. Conley serve as a consulting editor on all three Rhode Island volumes. His diligence and insightfulness have been a boon to our editorial efforts.

  27. Rambles through Rhode Island and Beyond. Providence: Rhode Island Publications Society, 2016.

    Similar to Patrick Conley’s previous two anthologies, this volume is heavily weighted toward Rhode Island history, of which Dr. Conley is the unchal­lenged master. Also included are essays on ethnicity, nature, abortion, banking, and the philosophy of history as well as some autobiographical musings. Always interesting and informative, these thirty-eight well-written essays are gems that form a lustrous anthological necklace crafted by Rhode Island’s first historian laureate.

    Dr. John P. Kaminski, Director of The Center for the Study
    of the American Constitution and Editor of

    The Documentary History of the Ratification of the Constitution

    This collection is vintage Conley, Rhode Island’s Historian Laureate — knowledgeable, colorful, straightforward, and utterly readable.

    Dr. Gordon S. Wood, Alva O. Way Professor of History, Emeritus, Brown University, Winner of the Pulitzer Prize in History

    Not for nothing is Patrick Conley, an extraordinarily prolific researcher and writer, highly regarded as Rhode Island’s Historian Laureate! These clearly written essays, including some that describe his own experiences, deserve a wide readership.

    Dr. James T. Patterson, Professor of History, Emeritus, Brown University, Winner of the Bancroft Prize in History