Located in the Mid-Atlantic region of the USA, the beautiful state of Maryland is home to an incredible variety of natural scenery, history, and culture. The state is bordered by Pennsylvania, Virginia, West Virginia, Delaware, and the Atlantic Ocean.
This article will list some interesting facts about Maryland, such as its largest city, population, history, climate, landmarks, and more. Like most of North America, the state was once a British colony and was involved in the Revolutionary War, the War of 1812, and the Civil War.
QUICK FACTS ABOUT MARYLAND
- Capital City: Annapolis
- Largest City: Baltimore
- Nickname: The Old Line State
- Statehood: 1788; 7th state
- Population (as of July 2019): 6.046 million
- Abbreviation: M.D.
- State bird: Baltimore oriole
- State flower: black-eyed Susan
- Total Size Of The State: 12,407 sq mi (32,133 km2)
What is now Maryland was first settled by humans at least 13,000 years ago, but they may have been there as early as 21,000 years ago. Researchers have found arrowheads, beads, and other ancient items near Maryland’s Chesapeake Bay. Various Native American tribes, such as the Lenape, Nanticoke, Powhatan, Susquehannock, and Shawnee, once occupied the region.
Captain John Smith was the first European to arrive in the area in 1608. In 1632, England’s king permitted Englishman George Calvert to establish Maryland in the United States (even though George Calvert died before the colony was settled; his son Cecilius organized the expedition to settle Maryland instead.) However, the British rule wouldn’t last: Maryland signed the Declaration of Independence in 1776.
Annapolis, Maryland, became the capital of the newly independent United States shortly after the Revolutionary War ended in 1783. A part of Maryland’s land was given up for the creation of Washington D.C., two years after it became the seventh state in the Union.
Harriet Tubman, a native of Maryland who fled the state to escape slavery but returned to rescue and lead others to freedom, made Maryland a critical part of the Underground Railroad in 1850.
Tensions between northern and southern states, specifically over slavery, led to the Civil War 11 years later. Though Maryland was just south of the Mason-Dixon Line, which is the name of the border that divides Pennsylvania and Maryland, it sided with the North during the Civil War. Sharpsburg, Maryland, was the site of Antietam, the bloodiest battle of the war. Maryland abolished slavery in 1864.
Why Does It Have That Name?
Queen Henrietta Maria of England was the inspiration for the name Maryland. Maryland became a colony after she was married to King Charles I.
The Old Line State is said to have gotten its name after 400 Revolutionary War soldiers fought against 10,000 British in 1776. During the Battle of Baltimore, the Maryland Line held off the British for just enough time to let George Washington and the rest of the American army escape.
Geographic Features and Landforms
Pennsylvania borders Maryland to the North, Delaware and the Atlantic Ocean to the east, the Atlantic Ocean and Virginia to the south, and West Virginia to the west. Maryland has five distinct geographic regions.
This state area lies south and east of the Mid-Atlantic Coastal Plain. The eastern shoreline of the river is covered in marshes, while the western shoreline is fertile farmland. This region has a wetland forested with cypress trees.
There are low hills, ridges, valleys, and streams in the Piedmont region of northeastern Maryland.
The Blue Ridge region is a narrow, mountainous area located west of Piedmont. The trees in the area are blue when viewed from a distance.
The Appalachian Ridge and Valley is a narrow strip of land in the North. This area is primarily forested and has steep ridges and farmland.
The Appalachian Plateau covers a portion of the state’s northwestern corner. In addition, Maryland is home to the Allegheny Mountains and Backbone Mountain, Maryland’s highest point.
The Natural World
Maryland is home to many mammals, including black bears, bobcats, and Appalachian cottontails. Some local birds are Ospreys, gyrfalcons (the most prominent type of falcon), and Baltimore orioles. The state’s amphibians include the Allegheny Mountain dusky salamanders and barking tree frogs. And reptiles such as bog turtles, Coastal Plain milk snakes, and eastern fence lizards live here.
Maryland’s native trees include bald cypress, loblolly pine, juniper, walnut, and white oak (the state tree). In addition, Maryland golden asters, Maryland meadow beauties, and ladies’ tresses, an orchid that resembles a spiraling lock of hair, are among the state’s wildflowers.
Fishing is a significant industry in Maryland, and the state produces the bluest crabs in the nation. The state also mines coal, clay, gas, and limestone.
Some Fun Facts About Maryland
- Fishing is fun! Dolphins, sharks, jellyfish, and a living reef are some attractions at the National Aquarium.
- Francis Scott Key, who wrote the Star Spangled Banner, Babe Ruth, Billie Holiday, and Thurgood Marshall were all Marylanders who achieved prominence in their respective fields.
- During the 1800s, Harriet Tubman guided over 70 people to freedom across the Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad National Park.