Maryland History - the history of Maryland
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Vacation 2 USA   >   Maryland   >   History
Vacation 2 USA   >   History   >   Maryland History


Maryland History

Before the arrival of Europeans, the area that is today Maryland was inhabited by various Native American peoples. When Europeans arrived in the early 17th century, these included the Accohannock and Powhatan on Maryland's Western shore, and Nanticoke on the eastern shore. However, the Native American peoples were relatively quickly pushed out of the state, with the last tribe, the Shawnee, leaving in the 1740s.

The first European explorers to reach Maryland where various expeditions under English, French and Spanish flags in the 16th century, however no permanent settlements were established until the following century.

In 1632, George Calvert, 1st Baron Baltimore (whose coat of arms appears on the Maryland flag) applied to King Charles I of England for a royal charter to establish a new province. George Calvert died before the charter could be granted, and the charter was instead granted to his son, Cecil Calvert, 2nd Baron Baltimore later that same year. The first settlers, led by Cecil Calvert's younger brother, Leonard, departed from England in 1633, and landed on March 25th 1634 (a date that is still commemorated in the state each year as "Maryland Day").

The new colony of Maryland was named after Henrietta Maria, the Queen consort of Charles I. The goal of the colony was to establish a safe haven for English Catholics (the Calverts themselves were Catholic), as well as to turn a profit. As a result, Maryland soon became one of only a handful of predominately Catholic regions in the English colonies in America. This was not without controversy: there were serious anti-Catholic revolts, which resulted in the temporary overthrow of the Calvert family in 1644 to 1646, and 1650 to 1658.

One interesting aspect of early Maryland history, is that the royal charter was based on an incorrect map that would have put Pennsylvania's major city of Philadelphia within Maryland. In 1750, the Penn family (who controlled Pennsylvania) and the Calvert family, agreed to engage two surveyors, Charles Mason and Jeremiah Dixon to survey a new boundary between the two colonies, which was named the Mason-Dixon line. Seventy years later, this line would become very important as a result of the Missouri Compromise of 1820: the expansion of slavery in the United States was only permitted South of this line.

During the American Revolution (1775 to 1783), Maryland, like many other colonies, was at first reluctant to split from Britain. Although no major battles took place within Maryland, the state did contribute important troops to the Continental Army, and it is probably from this contribution that the state gets the nickname "Old Line State". Additionally, the Continental Congress met for a few months in Baltimore in 1776 to 1777, and Annapolis also served as the US capital for just over seven months in 1783 to 1784.

Following the American Revolution the establishment of new permanent national capital was one of the first issues for the new government to address. A number of candidate cities were considered including Annapolis, but eventually it was decided to build a new capital (Washington D.C.). Maryland ceded approximately 61 square miles and Virginia approximately 39 square miles, to the federal government for this purpose (although Virginia's contribution was returned in 1846).

During the War of 1812, Maryland was the scene of two important battles. In 1814, the British defeated the Americans at the Battle of Bladensburg, and as result were able to capture Washington D.C. and burn many of the public buildings. The British navy also bombarded Fort McHenry (which defended Baltimore for 25 hours, but were unable to force its surrender: events there inspired Francis Scott Key to write "The Star-Spangled Banner" which was later to become the United States' national anthem.

During the American Civil War (1861 to 1865), Maryland found itself in a difficult position as both a slave state and one of the border states that straddled both North and South. There was considerable popular support for the Confederate cause, but Maryland did not secede from the Union thanks to swift and firm action by Abraham Lincolm, and the eventual support of Governor Thomas H. Hicks (who had initially favored neutrality and preventing Union troops from crossing the state). Maryland would eventually provide about 25,000 troops for the Confederacy (mostly serving in the Army of North Virginia), and about 60,000 men for the Union (mostly serving garrison duty within the state).

Maryland was crossed by troops of both sides during the Civil War. The most important battle occurring in the state being the Battle of Antienam, which was fought on September 17th 1862 near Sharpsburg. The battle, fought between about 87,000 men on the Union side and 40,000 on the Confederate side, although tactically a draw, effectively ended Robert E. Lee's invasion of the North.

One of the most noteable events of the 20th century that took place in Maryland, was the Great Baltimore Fire of 1904. The fire burned for over 30 hours on February 7th and February 8th, and destroyed more than 1,526 buildings across 70 city blocks. As a result of the fire, more than 35,000 people were left unemployed.

Like many former slave states, Maryland struggled with civil rights issues for long after the Civil War. For example, in the early 20th century there was several legislative attempts to disenfranchise African-Americans using property qualifications. On a brighter note, the 1935 case of Murray v. Pearson et al resulted in the integration of the University of Maryland Law School. This was the first time that any court had overturned the 1896 Supreme Court decision (Plessy v. Ferguson) approving racial segregation according to the "separate but equal" doctrine (although this particular new ruling had no authority outside Maryland).

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History of Maryland (Classic Reprint)

By Leonard Magruder Passano

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A ny history of Maryland may well begin with the names of George and Cecilius Calvert, two names in which the State may take much pride. Qeorge and Ccdlliu t. ,- ,, ,. ,. Calvert. Foundcn io the former of these, the father, is of tiMS tale. (ig t,g J(J(.J Qf founding the colony; and to the latter, the son, is due the successful carrying out of that idea. George Calvert was born in England in the year 1582. After being educated at Oxford and traveling on the Continent he returned to England,where he married A nne Mynne. He was a great favorite of King James I. under whom he held many offices and by whom he was knighted in 1617. Two years later he was appointed Secretary of State. In the year 1624 he resigned this office at the same time that he publicly professed the Roman Catholic religion. Whether he was first converted to that faith at the time or had before held it in secret is not certainly known; but at any rate his religion did notlose george calvert him the King sfavor, for in the following year he was made Baron Haltimore of the I rish peerage, and received large estates.
(Typographical errors above are due to OCR software and don't occur in the book.)

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The Maryland Colony (True Books: American History (Paperback))

By Kevin Cunningham

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Maryland, A Middle Temperament: 1634-1980 (Maryland History)

By Dr. Robert J. Brugger

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Maryland, A Middle Temperament: 1634-1980 (Maryland History)
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Maryland: A Middle Temperament explores the ironies, contradictions, and compromises that give "America's oldest border state" its special character. Extensively illustrated and accompanied by bibliography, maps, charts, and tables, Robert Brugger's vivid account of the state's political, economic, social, and cultural heritage--from the outfitting of Cecil Calvert's expedition to the opening of Baltimore's Harborplace--is rich in the issues and personalities that make up Maryland's story and explain its "middle temperament."

History of western Maryland. Being a history of Frederick, Montgomery, Carroll, Washington, Allegany, and Garrett counties from the earliest period to ... of their representative men Volume 1

By J. Thomas Scharf

Released: 2012-04-08
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History of western Maryland. Being a history of Frederick, Montgomery, Carroll, Washington, Allegany, and Garrett counties from the earliest period to ... of their representative men Volume 1
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The preparation of such a work as the " History of Western Maryland" imposes a vast responsibility and an immense amount of labor. Years of study devoted to the subjects embraced in it, the encouragement of friends, and the enterprise of the liberal publisher induced the author to undertake the work.

In the compilation of this history no authority of importance has been overlooked. The author hiis carefully examined every source of information open to him, and has availed himself of every fact that could throw new light upon, or impart additional interest to, the subject under consideration. Besides consulting the most reliable records and authorities, over fifteen thousand communications were addressed to persons supposed to be in possession of facts or information calculated to add value to the work. Recourse has not only been had to the valuable libraries of Baltimore, Annapolis, Frederick, and Hagerstown, but the author and his agents have visited personally the entire territory embraced in the six counties of Western Maryland, spending much time in each district, examining ancient newspapers, musty manuscripts, family, church, and society records, conversing with the aged inhabitants, and collecting from them orally many interesting facts never before published, and which otherwise, in all probability, would soon have been lost altogether. In addition to the material partly used in the preparation of his " Chronicles" and " History-of Baltimore City and County" and " History of Maryland," the author has consulted an immense number of pampiilets, consisting of county and town documents, reports of societies, associations, corporations, and historical discoui-ses, and, in short, everything of a fugitive character that might in any way illustrate the history of Western Maryland. From these and a large collection of newspapers (more particularly a nearly complete file of the Hagerstown Torcldight, Mail, Spy, and Herald, which were kindly loaned by Messrs. Mittag, Bell & Williams, and E. W. Mealey) great assistance has been derived.

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An honest effort has been made to do justice to both sections in the relation of such events of the civil war as come within the proper scope of a purely local history. The author has made

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History of Harford County, Maryland: From 1608 (the Year of Smith's Expedition) To the Close of the War of 1812 (Classic Reprint)

By Walter Wilkes Preston

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Excerpt from History of Harford County, Maryland: From 1608 (the Year of Smith's Expedition) To the Close of the War of 1812

Mr. Nathan Grafton assisted in the sketch of the Harford Baptist church. For the chapter on The Friends in Harford, I am indebted to Mr. A. H. Hull.

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This book is a reproduction of an important historical work. Forgotten Books uses state-of-the-art technology to digitally reconstruct the work, preserving the original format whilst repairing imperfections present in the aged copy. In rare cases, an imperfection in the original, such as a blemish or missing page, may be replicated in our edition. We do, however, repair the vast majority of imperfections successfully; any imperfections that remain are intentionally left to preserve the state of such historical works.

History of Maryland (Classic Reprint)

By James McSherry

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History of Maryland (Classic Reprint)
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The editor of the work which it is the purpose of these brief pre Hminary words to present to the public for its sufferance and, it is hoped, a measure of satisfaction, has held in mind during his labors certain facts which he conceived to be fundamental in his undertaking. Conformity of style and literary usage was regarded as important. Following the line of least resistance, he undertook to adapt the style of Mr. Mc Sherry to that of his own rather than to affect a manner of writing which to him would have been forced and unnatural, and certainly to the reader clumsy and unrewarding. Numerous verbal changes have therefore been made throughout the text. A certain fulsomeness which appears especially in the eulogies in the work has been corrected. These and similar literary changes embrace the greater part of the exercise of the editorial function up to the chapter which relates to the close of the Revolutionary War. From that period to the end of the work the story was too meager to have linked to it the great subsequent events of Maryland shistory. It thus became necessary to rewrite the work from that point, although in so doing everything of the authors has found incorporation, although not always in situ. A comparison with the original work will show the large extent of the amplification which was found to be necessary. The part of the book for which the writer is wholly responsible he would prefer to submit without a word other than one of acknowledgment of indebtedness to the authors to whom he makes reference in his foot notes; especially those who have illuminated particular facts of Maryland shistory by scholarly monographs. To Mr. William Morse Keener, LL. B., he makes grateful acknowledgment for services in the reading of proof and otherwise relieving him of irksome features of his task. If the complete history of Maryland herewith offered to th
(Typographical errors above are due to OCR software and don't occur in the book.)

Genealogy and biography of leading families of the city of Baltimore and Baltimore County, Maryland

By Chapman Publishing Company

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Genealogy and biography of leading families of the city of Baltimore and Baltimore County, Maryland
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Genealogy and biography of leading families of the city of Baltimore and Baltimore County, Maryland

Baltimore: Then and Now®

By Alexander D. Mitchell IV

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Baltimore has undergone tremendous change since Susquehannock Indians first inhabited the area centuries ago. From the fire of 1904 that destroyed most of downtown, to the development of the Inner Harbor in the 1970s, and sports stadiums in the 1990s, the city has undergone years of renovation and rebuilding. Sites include: Federal Hill, U.S.S. Constellation, Fells Point, Shot Tower, Peale Museum, City Hall, Camden Station, John Hopkins University and Hospital, Bromo-Seltzer Tower, B&O Building, Pratt House, Washington Monument, Walters Art Gallery, Union Station, and Maryland Art Institute.

Frederick County Chronicles:: The Crossroads of Maryland (American Chronicles (History Press))

By Marie Anne Erickson

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Frederick County Chronicles:: The Crossroads of Maryland (American Chronicles (History Press))
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The rails and covered bridges of Frederick County are framed by the waters of the Potomac River to the south and the Mason-Dixon line to the north. The county rests at a crossroads of Maryland cultures and history, and journalist Marie Anne Erickson sought out the oldest members of this diverse community to record their colorful stories. Twenty years after the articles appeared as the Crossroads" series for Frederick Magazine, Ingrid Price has compiled her mother's fascinating essays for the first time. Stories of Civil War battles and Prohibition-era raids share the pages with memories of sledding by moonlight and the hunt for the mythical Snallygaster in Erickson's spirited history. From Brunswick to Mount Airy and from Emmitsburg to Point of Rocks, discover an affectionate and occasionally offbeat portrait of Frederick County."

Maryland State History - In A Nutshell

By Cyndi Kinney

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Maryland State History - In A Nutshell
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