George Calvert was the first Lord of Baltimore. His oldest son, Cecil Calvert, was the second Lord Baltimore. George Calvert, after a visit to Virginia, petitioned King Charles I of England to grant him permission to colonize the land north of the Potomac. He died in 1632, at age 52, just 66 days before the colony's official charter was issued, but his son Cecil Calvert carried out his father's dream.
Cecil Calvert had the difficult task of planning and carrying out the colonization of Maryland. He recruited settlers and arranged for the Ark and the Dove to take them to Maryland. Cecil Calvert spent a great deal of money on that first voyage. The two ships arrived at Maryland in early March 1634.
Cecil Calvert supported his father's idea of making Maryland a haven for all types of Christians. He was responsible for the Act Concerning Religion, a law that tried to eliminate religious prejudice among Christian Marylanders.
Because England's monarchs could not be trusted to leave the American colonies alone, Cecil Calvert spent the remaining years of his life in England protecting his ownership of Maryland. Despite a couple of interruptions, Maryland remained a Calvert possession for well over a century. Maryland's Cecil County was named for him, and Anne Arundel County was named for his wife.
When Europeans arrived in the 1600's about 3,000 Indian people lived on the land that is now called Maryland. No one is certain when they met the Europeans for the first time. Some historians think that french traders ben to buy furs from the Indians that lived along Chesapeake Bay in the early 1500s.
During the 1660s many land disputes arose because of settlers farming land which was close to other state=s borders. Consequently, disputes came about as to border lines. These disputes involved the states of Virginia and Pennsylvania. Over the next 100 years Maryland lost many thousand acres of land to these states.
The French and Indian War (1754-1763) had some effects on Maryland. One main effect was that it slowed the growth of western Maryland and increased the growth of Annapolis, Frederick, and Baltimore. England had built Fort Cumberland and Fort Frederick near Hancock. People were frightened by all the killing so they left their homes and farms and went to the bigger cities. Many did not return to their deserted homes.
Of the seven members of the Maryland delegation to the Second Continental Congress, four signed the Declaration of Independence in 1776. These men by signing risked their lives, lands and fortunes. They were: Charles Carroll of Carrollton, Samuel Chase, William Paca, and Thomas Stone.
The Maryland Flag
The design of the Maryland Flag consists of the arms of the Calvert family quartered with the arms of the Crossland family. The Calvert family was that of the Lords Baltimore, the first Lord, George Calvert, being the founder of the colony of Maryland in 1634. The Crossland family was that of George Calvert's mother. Since she had no brother and that made her the heiress of her family estate, she was allowed under heraldic law to quarter her arms with those of her husband. From left to right at the top of the staff, the first and second quarters are the Calvert and Crossland arms. Below are the same arms in reverse order.
The Calvert arms are six stripes alternating in gold and black. The band (probably representing an ancient shoulder belt, for carrying a sword) crosses over black were it crosses a gold stripe, and gold where it crosses a black one. In the upper quarter the first gold stripe must be next to the flagstaff, and in the extreme upper corner of the bend will be black. This is important, because if the flag is displayed upside down, a black stripe will be next to the flagstaff, which is wrong. The Crossland arms are quarterly, argent (silver) and gules (red), and a cross bottony counterchanged. In flags the color silver is represented by white. The cross bottony is a cross with extremities resembling a tre-foil plant.
The State Tree
Maryland's State tree is the White Oak or the Wye Oak. While King Henry VIII ruled England in 1507-1547 a white oak acorn sprouted in the ground of the Atlantic coast on the newly found continent of North America. The little seedling took rote by a peninsula called AChesopieoc by the Indians. By the time Lord Baltimore's English settlers came and declared Maryland a colony in (1634) the oak was an impressive, mature tree. By the time the United States had successfully survived the Revolutionary war and Maryland was acknowledged in the U.S. Constitution (1788) the Wye Oak still lived and continued to live through the Civil War.
Today the oak is part of the Wye Oak State Park, located in Talbot County. Because of its inspiring strength and impressive size the Wye Oak was named the official tree of Maryland in 1941.
Places of Interest
A lot has changed since George Washington stood in Annapolis, but a lot has also remained the same. Narrow streets flanked by original 18th century homes and ancient trees still spiral out from State House Circle, where the oldest continuously operated state house sits atop a hill. The 400-year old tulip poplar known as the Liberty Tree still stands. Sailboats, work boats and yachts glide in the 350-year-old harbor under the bright summer sky.
Ocean City is a beach-goer's dream and in the summer becomes Maryland's second largest city. This is a 10 mile resort community that offers beaches, shopping, eating, a boardwalk, and many special events every season of the year.
The bay measures almost 200 miles long and practically divides the state of Maryland. Nothing can compare with a relaxing day on the bay in a sailboat. Also the many tributaries are good for waterskiing, power boating, or windsurfing.
Baltimore is a splendid place for anyone with an interest in history. You can visit Fort McHenry that survived an attack by the British in the War of 1812, or the B&O Railroad Museum. But there is also much new in Baltimore--the National Aquarium and the Columbus Center of Marine Research and Exploration.
The State of Maryland
Maryland's population is 4.8 million. There is about 403 people per square mile. The area of Maryland is 10,460 sq. mi. Maryland is the 8th smallest state. Maryland's highest point is Backbone Mountain, it is 3,360 feet above sea level. The lowest point is along the coast at sea level. Maryland has few large lakes, the largest is Deep Creek Lake, which covers 3,900 acres. But all lakes in Maryland are man-made.
Maryland's economy is very diverse. It has the largest population of engineers and research scientists in the country. The suburbs around Washington D.C. have many agencies of the federal government such as the National Institute of Health, the National Air and Space Administration's Goddard Space Flight Center, and the National Security Agency.
The harbor in Baltimore is the second largest port on the east coast. Tourism around the Chesapeake Bay and Ocean City generate a lot of income for the state.
Maryland's Official State Symbols
The Black-Eyed Susan has been the official State flower since 1918. The yellow daisy blooms in late summer.
The Baltimore Oriole has been the official State bird since 1947. The oriole's colors are black and yellow, the same colors as in the Calvert shield.
The Chesapeake Bay Retriever was declared the official
State dog in 1964.
1. Maryland, The Seventh State, A History, Third Edition, Marck, John T.,Maryland, Creative Impressions Ltd., 1996.
2. The Maryland Colony, Frandin, Dennis Brindell, Canada, Childrens Press Inc.,1990.
3. America the Beautiful, Maryland, Kent, Deborah, Chicago, Childrens Press Inc., 1990.
4. Maryland, So Many Things to do. So Close Together., Maryland Office of tourism Development, 1998
5. Nabit, Charles J., Hodes, Michael C., Mid-Atlantic Country, 1996
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