The State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations, more commonly referred to as Rhode Island (/rod alnd/ ( listen) or English pronunciation: /rdalnd/), is a state in the New England region of the United States. It is the smallest U.S. state by area. Rhode Island is bordered by Connecticut to the west and Massachusetts to the north and east, and it shares a water boundary with New York's Long Island to the southwest. Rhode Island was the first of the 13 original colonies to declare independence from British rule, declaring itself independent on May 4, 1776, two months before any other state and the convention. The state was also the last to ratify the United States Constitution.