North Smithfield has suburban character but has not lost its innate rural and historical qualities.
Slatersville is by most accounts the heart of the community, with its prim white houses and perfect picket fences all in a row. Complementing this image, however, is the fact that the very beginning of America's Industrial Revolution belongs to Slatersville, as America's "First planned industrial city". While other parts of Rhode Island also possess a mill town character to them, North Smithfield's Slatersville was the original. The town's history has been preserved with care, all the while allowing for modern development and services, including all the necessary stores and restaurants for in-town errand running. Some mills have been converted into upscale housing and many of North Smithfield's historic farms have become homes.
North Smithfield is made up of the villages of Branch Village, Crystal Lake, Forestdale, Primrose, Slatersville, Union Village, Waterford, Woonsocket Hill.