Barrington was originally occupied by the Wampanoag Indians, and was later settled by the Pilgrims in 1652 after paying Massasoit, Chief Sachem of the Wampanoag tribe, 35 pounds for the land. Then in 1667 Swansea, MA was incorporated and included the land which is now Barrington. Later, due to religious differences Barrington incorporated as a separate town in 1717. Today Barrington is one of the nicest towns in Rhode Island to live in. Surrounded by water on three sides it has more waterfront land then any other town in the East Bay area. Furthermore, there are supposedly over 40 public rights of way to the water (many of them forgotten), which are have recently regained interest and are being investigated and researched by the Barrington Harbor Commission, who start investigating back in 2001.