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home | Locations | Types of Maryland Recreational Facil . . .
 

Types of Maryland Recreational Facilities
Ivan Gillis
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Maryland Recreational Facilities

Maryland is a state in the Mid-Atlantic region of the United States, bordering VirginiaWest Virginia, and Washington, D.C. to its south and west; Pennsylvania to its north; and Delaware to its east. The state's largest city is Baltimore, and its capital is Annapolis. Among its occasional nicknames are Old Line State, the Free State, and the Chesapeake Bay State. The state is named after the English queen Henrietta Maria of France.

One of the original Thirteen Colonies, Maryland is considered the birthplace of religious freedom in America. The state was founded by George Calvert, a trusted foreign minister and personal friend of King James I. When Calvert converted to Catholicism in 1625 it meant his disqualification from holding public office, but his friendship with King James remained. Calvert had had an early interest in the administration of colonial affairs and petitioned James for a charter to provide a religious haven for Catholics persecuted in England as well as to extend the territories of the English Empire. Consequently, in 1632 James granted Calvert a charter to settle lands in America held by the Crown, to wit: to "transport ... a numerous Colony of the English Nation" to settle there. Unlike the Pilgrims and Puritans, who began enforcing conformity with their beliefs as soon as they settled in America, Calvert envisioned a colony where people of different religious sects would coexist under the principle of toleration. Some historians believe that Calvert's aspiration towards such a society may have been inspired by the works of Thomas More, most notably the book Utopia. Accordingly, in 1649 the Maryland General Assembly passed an Act Concerning Religion, which enshrined the principle of toleration by penalizing anyone who "reproached" a fellow Marylander as a "heritick, Scismatick, Idolator, puritan, Independant, Prespiterian popish prest, Jesuite, Jesuited papist, Lutheran, Calvenist, Anabaptist, Brownist, Antinomian, Barrowist, Roundhead [or] Separatist."

Sixteen of Maryland's twenty three counties border on the tidal waters of the Chesapeake Bay estuary and its many tributaries, which combined total more than 4,000 miles of the shoreline. The population is approximately six million residents. As of 2015, Maryland had the highest median household income of any state, owing in large part to its close proximity to the nation's capital and a highly diversified economy spanning manufacturing, services, and biotechnology.

The state remained with the Union during the Civil War, due in significant part to demographics and Federal intervention. The 1860 census, held shortly before the outbreak of the civil war, showed that 49% of Maryland's African Americans were free blacks.

 

The Battle of Antietam was the single bloodiest day of the Civil War with nearly 23,000 casualties.

Governor Thomas Holliday Hicks suspended the state legislature, and to help ensure the election of a new pro-union governor and legislature, President Abraham Lincoln had a number of its pro-slavery politicians arrested, including the Mayor of Baltimore, George William Brown; suspended several civil liberties, including habeas corpus; and ordered artillery placed on Federal Hill overlooking Baltimore. Historians debate the constitutionality of these wartime actions, and the suspension of civil liberties was later deemed illegal by the U.S. Supreme Court.

In April 1861 Federal units and state regiments were attacked as they marched through Baltimore, sparking the Baltimore riot of 1861, the first bloodshed in the Civil War. Of the 115,000 men from Maryland who joined the military during the Civil War, 85,000, or 77%, joined the Union army, while the remainder joined the Confederate Army. The largest and most significant battle in the state was the Battle of Antietam on September 17, 1862, near Sharpsburg. Although a tactical draw, the battle was considered a strategic Union victory and a turning point of the war.

After the war

A new state constitution in 1864 abolished slavery and Maryland was first recognized as a "Free State" in that context. Following passage of constitutional amendments that granted voting rights to freedmen, in 1867 the state extended suffrage to non-white males.

The Great Baltimore Fire of 1904 burned for more than 30 hours, destroying 1,526 buildings and spanning 70 city blocks. More than 1,231 firefighters worked to bring the blaze under control.

With the nation's entry into World War I in 1917, new military bases such as Camp Meade, the Aberdeen Proving Ground, and the Edgewood Arsenal were established. Existing facilities, including Fort McHenry, were greatly expanded.

After Georgia congressman William D. Upshaw criticized Maryland openly in 1923 for not passing Prohibition laws, Baltimore Sun editor Hamilton Owens coined the "Free State" nickname for Maryland in that context, which was popularized by H. L. Mencken in a series of newspaper editorials.

Maryland's urban and rural communities had different experiences during the Great Depression. The "Bonus Army" marched through the state in 1932 on its way to Washington, D.C. Maryland instituted its first ever income tax in 1937 to generate revenue for schools and welfare. Baltimore was a major war production center during World War II. The biggest operations were Bethlehem Steel's Fairfield Yard, which built Liberty ships; and Glenn Martin, an aircraft manufacturer.

Maryland experienced population growth following World War II, particularly in the Baltimore and Washington, D.C. suburbs. Agricultural tracts gave way to residential communities such as Columbia and Montgomery Village. Concurrently the Interstate Highway System was built throughout the state, most notably I-95 and the Capital Beltway, altering travel patterns. In 1952 the eastern and western halves of Maryland were linked for the first time by the Chesapeake Bay Bridge, which replaced a nearby ferry service.

Maryland's regions experienced economic changes following WWII. Heavy manufacturing declined in Baltimore. In Maryland's four westernmost counties, industrial, railroad, and coal mining jobs declined. On the lower Eastern Shore, family farms were bought up by major concerns and large-scale poultry farms and vegetable farming became prevalent. In Southern Maryland, tobacco farming nearly vanished due to suburban development and a state tobacco buy-out program.

In an effort to reverse depopulation due to the loss of working-class industries, Baltimore initiated urban renewal projects in the 1960s with Charles Center and the Baltimore World Trade Center. Some resulted in the break-up of intact residential neighborhoods, producing social volatility, and some older residential areas around the harbor have had units renovated and have become popular with new populations.

Maryland's history as a border state has led it to exhibit characteristics of both the Northern and Southern regions of the United States. Generally, rural Western Maryland between the West Virginian Panhandle and Pennsylvaniahas an Appalachian culture; the Southern and Eastern Shore regions of Maryland embody a Southern culture, while densely populated Central Maryland—radiating outward from Baltimore and Washington, D.C.—has more in common with that of the Northeast. The U.S. Census Bureau designates Maryland as one of the South Atlantic States, but it is commonly associated with the Mid-Atlantic States and/or Northeastern United States by other federal agencies, the media, and some residents.

African Americans form a sizable portion of the state's population – nearly 30 percent in 2010. Most are descendants of people transported to the area as slaves from West Africa, and many are of mixed race, including European and Native American ancestry. New residents of African descent include 20th-century and later immigrants from Nigeria, particularly of the Igbo and Yoruba tribes. Concentrations of African Americans live in Baltimore CityPrince George's County, a suburb of Washington, D.C., where many work; Charles County, western parts of Baltimore County, and the southern Eastern Shore.

Hispanic immigrants of the later 20th century have settled in Aspen HillHyattsville/Langley ParkGlenmont/WheatonBladensburgRiverdale ParkGaithersburg, as well as Highlandtown and Greektown in East Baltimore. Salvadorans are the largest Hispanic group in Maryland. Other Hispanic groups with significant populations in the state include Mexicans and Puerto Ricans and Hondurans. Though the Salvadoran population is more concentrated in the area around Washington, D.C., and the Puerto Rican population is more concentrated in the Baltimore area, all other major Hispanic groups in the state are evenly dispersed between these two areas. Maryland has one of the most diverse Hispanic populations in the country, with significant populations from various Caribbean and Central American nations.

Jews are numerous throughout Montgomery County and in Pikesville and Owings Mills northwest of Baltimore. Asian Americans are concentrated in the suburban counties surrounding Washington, D.C. and in Howard County, with Korean American and Taiwanese American communities in RockvilleGaithersburg, and Germantown and a Filipino American community in Fort Washington. Numerous Indian Americans live across the state, especially in central Maryland. Amish/Mennonite communities are found in St. Mary'sGarrett, and Cecil counties.

Attracting educated Asians and Africans to the professional jobs in the region, Maryland has the fifth-largest proportions of racial minorities in the country.

In 2006 645,744 were counted as foreign born, which represents mainly people from Latin America and Asia. About 4.0 percent are undocumented immigrants. Maryland also has a large Korean American population. In fact, 1.7 percent are Korean, while as a whole, almost 6.0 percent are Asian.

Maryland's economy benefits from the state's close proximity to the federal government in Washington, D.C. with an emphasis on technical and administrative tasks for the defense/aerospace industry and bio-research laboratories, as well as staffing of satellite government headquarters in the suburban or exurban Baltimore/Washington area. Ft. Meade serves as the headquarters of the Defense Information Systems AgencyUnited States Cyber Command, and the National Security Agency/Central Security Service. In addition, a number of educational and medical research institutions are located in the state. In fact, the various components of The Johns Hopkins University and its medical research facilities are now the largest single employer in the Baltimore area. Altogether, white collar technical and administrative workers comprise 25 percent of Maryland's labor force, attributable in part to nearby Maryland being a part of the Washington Metro Area where the federal government office employment is relatively high.

Baltimore City is the eighth largest port in the nation, and was at the center of the February 2006 controversy over the Dubai Ports World deal because it was considered to be of such strategic importance. The state as a whole is heavily industrialized, with a booming economy and influential technology centers. Its computer industries are some of the most sophisticated in the United States, and the federal government has invested heavily in the area. Maryland is home to several large military bases and scores of high level government jobs.

 

See also: List of National Historic Landmarks in Maryland

Tourism is popular in Maryland, with tourists visiting the city of Baltimore, the beaches of the Eastern Shore, and the nature of western Maryland, as well as many passing through en route to Washington, D.C. Baltimore attractions include the Harborplace, the Baltimore AquariumFort McHenry, as well as the Camden Yards baseball stadium. Ocean City on the Atlantic Coast has been a popular beach destination in summer, particularly since the Chesapeake Bay Bridge was built in 1952 connecting the Eastern Shore to the more populated Maryland cities. The state capital of Annapolis offers sites such as the state capitol building, the historic district, and the waterfront. Maryland also has several sites of interest to military history, given Maryland's role in the American Civil War and in the War of 1812. Other attractions include the historic and picturesque towns along the Chesapeake Bay, such as Saint Mary's, Maryland's first colonial settlement and original capital

Maryland imposes five income tax brackets, ranging from 2 to 6.25 percent of personal income. The city of Baltimore and Maryland's 23 counties levy local "piggyback" income taxes at rates between 1.25 and 3.2 percent of Maryland taxable income. Local officials set the rates and the revenue is returned to the local governments quarterly. The top income tax bracket of 9.45 percent is the fifth highest combined state and local income tax rates in the country, behind New York City's 11.35 percent, California's 10.3 percent, Rhode Island's 9.9 percent, and Vermont's 9.5 percent.

Maryland's state sales tax is 6 percent. All real property in Maryland is subject to the property tax. Generally, properties that are owned and used by religious, charitable, or educational organizations or property owned by the federal, state or local governments are exempt. Property tax rates vary widely. No restrictions or limitations on property taxes are imposed by the state, meaning cities and counties can set tax rates at the level they deem necessary to fund governmental services.

Maryland has several historic and renowned private colleges and universities, the most prominent of which is Johns Hopkins University, founded in 1876 with a grant from Baltimore entrepreneur Johns Hopkins.

The first public university in the state is the University of Maryland, Baltimore, which was founded in 1807 and contains the University of Maryland's only public academic health, human services, and one of two law centers (the other being the University of Baltimore School of Law). Seven professional and graduate schools train the majority of the state's physicians, nurses, dentists, lawyers, social workers, and pharmacists. The flagship university and largest undergraduate institution in Maryland is the University of Maryland, College Park which was founded as the Maryland Agricultural College in 1856 and became a public land grant college in 1864. Towson University, founded in 1866, is the state's second largest university. Baltimore is home to the University of Maryland, Baltimore County and the Maryland Institute College of Art. The majority of public universities in the state are affiliated with the University System of Maryland. Two state-funded institutions, Morgan State University and St. Mary's College of Maryland, as well as two federally funded institutions, the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences and the United States Naval Academy, are not affiliated with the University System of Maryland.

Maryland Island Recreational Facilities Listing

 

Amusement Parks

Arboretums & Botanical Parks

Art Museums

Aquariums

Beaches

Castles

Festivals

Museums

National Forests

National Parks

Renaissance Fairs

Skiing Resorts

State Parks

Zoos

Other Sites of Interest

 San Marcos Memories—disappearing North County San Diego, Ca

www.ellengillisart.com

 

Lake San Marcos—Listing of Vendors and Other Items of Interest to LSM residents

www.lsmdirectory.com

 

Silly Service—38 years of Federal Civil Service Overview(A book in progress)

www.ivanegillis.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 




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