In 1728, after marrying Anne Forster (daughter of John Forster, Chief Justice of the Irish Common Pleas), Dr. George Berkeley, an Anglo-Irish philosopher moved from Ireland to America.

Upon arrival he bought a plantation in Middletown, RI and spent three years in Newport and was much indebted to the members of the congregation at the Trinity Church.

In fact, the original organ at Trinity Church was a gift from Dr. George Berkeley, later Bishop of Cloyne (Ireland).

It was Bishop Berkeley who posed the famous question: “If a tree falls in the forest, but there is no one to hear, is there sound?”.

According to Trinity Church , local legend has it that the Bishop first formulated his query while meditating in his favorite retreat, a niche (still called “Bishop’s Seat”) in the craggy rocks overlooking Sachuest Beach.

“If a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound?” is a philosophical thought experiment that raises questions regarding observation and knowledge of reality.

Read More About Bishop Berkeley on Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.

This story was originally published on November 7, 2015.

Ryan Belmore is the Publisher of What'sUpNewp. 
Belmore has been involved with What’sUpNewp since shortly after its launch in 2012, proudly leading it to be named Best Local News Blog in Rhode Island by Rhode Island Monthly readers in 2018, 2019, and 2020 and an honorable mention in the Common Good Awards in 2021.

Born and raised in Rhode Island, Belmore graduated from Coventry High School and the Community College of Rhode Island. In addition to living in Newport for 10 years, he has lived in Portsmouth, Coventry, Providence, Smithfield, Burrillville, and East Greenwich.

Belmore currently serves as Vice President of the Board Of Directors for Fort Adams Trust and on the Board of Directors for Potter League For Animals. He previously served on the Board of Lucy's Hearth and the Arts & Cultural Alliance for Newport County.

Belmore and his wife, Jen, currently live in Alexandria, Virginia, a move they made in 2021. Read more about that here - https://whatsupnewp.com/2021/09/letter-from-the-publisher-some-personal-news/

Belmore visits Newport every couple of weeks to support the 12+ paid contributors What'sUpNewp has on the ground across Rhode Island, a place he called home for 39 years.

Belmore is a member of Local Independent Online News (LION) Publishers, Society of Professional Journalists, and the North American Snowsports Journalists Association.

In 2020, Belmore was named Member of the Year by LION and won the Arts & Cultural Alliance of Newport County's Dominque Award.
Belmore can be contacted at ryan@whatsupnewp.com and 401-662-1653.

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