Ebenezer Knight Dexter, 1773-1824, prominent Providence merchant and a United States marshal who became Providence's greatest philanthropist. In his will he bequeathed nearly 2.3 million square feet of land to Providence for aid to the poor and other civic purposes including the training of militia. His most notable gifts were the Dexter Asylum and the Dexter training grounds. Today, both the land and the financial proceeds from Dexter's bequest are managed by the Commissioners of the Dexter Donation, a city agency chaired by the mayor of Providence.
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