Third city of Wales. University and Cathedral city, county borough and county town of Monmouthshire.
Referred to as The New Seattle by the New York Times because of the local music scene. Also famous for the Transporter Bridge, one of only a handful left in The World where vehicles cross the river Usk by means of an aerial ferry.

Webster's 1913 definition of city:
in Great Britain, a town corporate, which is or has been the seat of a bishop, or the capital of his see.
Newport was given it's present corporate charter in 1385 and is the seat of the bishop of Monmouth.


Released onto the US market in 1957 by the Lorillard Tobacco Company, Newport has faced an uneven history - but has succeeded in becoming a major force in the US cigarette market.

After success with the launch of Kent in 1952, Lorillard targeted the changing tastes of the market place which demanded a fresher, cooler cigarette with the release of Newport.

The brand received immediate support from consumers and within 3 years of its introduction production reached 9 billion cigarettes per year. Unfortunately this success would not last, and the brand's growth would slow dramatically in the 1960s.

Market share for Newport reached its lowest levels in 1972, which spurred the brand's management into action with a review of Newport's marketing plan. These assessments resulted in a completely new advertising plan and a packaging redesign.

These measures had a profound effect on the brand's fortunes, in 1979 Newport became the 18th most popular cigarette on the US market and within a decade of the marketing review sales for the brand had tripled. Continuing this push for growth by 1988 Lorillard had introduced mobile marketing platforms for Newport, handing out free samples of their products.

By 1990 Newport had become the 5th most popular brand of cigarette in the United States and Lorillard's goal of increasing market share continued. In 1993, Newport's long running advertising series "Alive with pleasure" was modernized to match the changing views of consumers on the market.

Sales continued to grow, and by 2000 Newport was the number 3 cigarette in the United States.

Today, Newport has gained a reputation for their strong intensity - having high nicotine and tar levels, along with being one of the most expensive cigarettes on the market. Despite this and the brands rocky history, it has achieved impressive growth and brand recognition within its homeland and is now the second largest cigarette brand in the United States and the largest brand in the menthol cigarette group.


Like all tobacco brands, throughout its history Newport has faced criticism. A recent issue was the used of a woman who appeared to be pregnant in print advertising for the brand in 1995. This caused a large backlash against Newport and its parent Lorillard. It was classed as giving the wrong message to female smokers that smoking whilst pregnant was acceptable. The advertisement depicted a young man giving a pregnant woman candy and a pack of Newport. It was quickly pulled from the market.

Newport has also faced complaints regarding accusations that it brands specifically towards the youth African American market. While the brand has denied these claims, it is widely reported that 86% of cigarettes purchased by African Americans are Newport.


  • Newport Kings
  • Newport 100s
  • Newport Light Kings
  • Newport Medium Kings


Some years back, I was telling a story about the American Bicentennial, in which I played a small but historic, role.

"So there I was on a boat in Newport Harbor, jumping up and down, desperately trying to hail this Russian -- clipper ship, it was that big -- with almost nothing on, screaming in Russian --"

Dead silence.

"Newport." Suzy said, at last. "Newport, Rhode Island? What were you doing, having a peep at the Tall Ships while having a spot of tea?"

Without missing a beat, I said, "That's silly. You don't have tea on a boat. You have gin and tonic."

It was all we could do to persuade poor Susan that perfectly ordinary people a) own boats, b) take them into Newport Harbor, and c) some perfectly ordinary people even live there.

"Really, what you're thinking about -- it's only a very small part of town. Just a few streets, really. No one lives there anymore, at least not who you think...."

But looking back, we were only fooling ourselves. There's really no place even faintly like it...

Let's start at the obvious. The Historic District has houses that are ginormous. High ceilinged, panelled, his-and-her bedroom copies of Italian villas and European palaces, strung along over Bellevue Avenue (land side) and Cliff Walk (sea side) they're emphatically NOT Stately Wayne Manors.

They're Stately Wayne Summer Cottages.

Seems like beginning in the 19th century, the southern plantation set found much more pleasant to move North during the summer. Soon Yankee China traders, not to be outdone, began summering there as well. This began a building war, with successive newcomers vying with each other to see who could toss away the most money on the biggest (athem) erection. Top honors finally went to Anderson Cooper's mother's family (er, what were they called again?) with a $150 million (in today's dollars) nice little Italianate villa called The Breakers of 70 rooms with platinum panelling, rooms taken up from French chateaux and reassembled, rare woods and mosaics, all mod (1893-style) cons and a Children's Cottage in the garden. (If you're lucky, you'll have a tour with a nice Hungarian lady...who just happens to be related.) Other than that, there's Marble House (same family, arguably prettier), Rosecliff (the Grand Trianon, with electricity, plumbing, and a heart-shaped staircase), the Isaac Bell House, The Elms (with secret passages, oh my!), The Astor's Beechwood Mansion (a living history museum...the Breakers people still don't like them), and a few others.

For all that, I don't (or didn't) feel inspired by them. I don't feel like impelled towards better behavior (as I do in Blackstone Library), awed beyond anything human (as I do in the Met), or simply giddily happy (Grand Central Station).

Instead, I feel like smoking hashish. With opium and a little powdered rock in it. They make me want to dress like Norma Desmond, become a rabid radical feminist, cultivate my latent bisexuality, run through the halls and down Cliff Walk naked, paint a Fauvist canvas, do good works in Africa and/or stand spread-eagled in a hurricane.

All of which have been done, at one time or another, by the, summer residents. (There's a reason why they named a cigarette for the town, and what all this has to do with Marlboro you'll just have to look up for yourself...)

Um...I digress. Other than that -- where do we start? Tennis anyone? Newport Casino is home to the International Tennis Hall of Fame, a Real Tennis facility, and a nice, but pricey restaurant. (Always mention that it's next to a Waldbaum's, after you've gone. One must.)

There's plenty of boats, boating, and boat-related activity, from sailing Sunfishes to a Naval Base (hey, America's Cup and all). If you like sailing at all, you already know what to do. If, like me, your nautical experience is limited to childhood memories of taking family excursions on a long-gone power boat, you can still saunter around town in deck shoes drinking, nibbling, and dancing by the water, in between staring thoughtfully out to sea and murmuring about the weather, or perusing aquatically-themed bricabrac (Nantucket baskets are half the price you'd pay in actual Nantucket) at any number of shops. (Never call anything less than 45 feet a yacht, though. One mustn't.)There's also the usual suspects, like golf and a beach. Plus polo. Yup. Polo.

But is there any there there, or is it just a resort? Yes again.

Newport used to be a center of pirate activity, and once hosted New England's slave trade. On a more positive note, it was also a center of religious tolerance, where Quakers, Jews, and Baptists could live in relative safety. One of the town's more important buildings is Touro Synagogue, the oldest Jewish temple in the Western Hemisphere. Well worth visiting, even if you aren't Jewish (ask to see the Mystery Light!). The Colonial section is appropriately quaint, especially in the autumn-through-Christmas season.

Oh, and the jazz festival, and the folk festival....Some people even love it in Winter, for that get-away-from-it-all feeling.

But really, it's no big deal...

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