North Kingstown is a town in Washington County, Rhode Island, United States. The population was 26,486 at the 2010 census. The famous American portraitist Gilbert Stuart was born in the village of Saunderstown, located in the southern region of North Kingstown.The town of Kings Towne was founded in 1674, by the colonial government, and included the present day towns of North Kingstown, South Kingstown, Exeter, and Narragansett. In 1722, Kings Towne was split into two parts, North Kingstown and South Kingstown, with North Kingstown, having the earliest settlements, retaining the 1674 establishment date. In 1742 the town of Exeter was taken from the western part of North Kingstown.