- Southern Maryland
Marylandin popular usage is composed of the state's southernmost counties on the "Western Shore" of the Chesapeake Bay. This region includes all of Calvert, Charles and St. Mary's counties and southern portions of Anne Arundel and Prince George's counties.
Southern Maryland was originally inhabited by
Piscataway Indians. Captain John Smithexplored the area in 1608 and 1609. [cite web
title=Capt. John Smith's 1608 Chesapeake Voyage
publisher=Calvert Marine Museum
He explored the lower Chesapeake Bay in 1607.] In 1634
St. Mary's City, at southern Maryland's lower tip was the site of the first Roman CatholicEnglish settlement in North America(the site is now a living history museum). Tobacco plantations flourished in southern Maryland during slavery. With a slave economy during the American Civil War, regional white sympathies were very pro-Confederate (as evidenced in the official state song lyrics). From the war's beginning, however, large numbers of Union occupying troops and patrolling river gunboats prevented the state's secession, although nighttime smuggling across the Potomac Riverwith Virginia took place. Southern Maryland was and in most places still is traditionally a ruraland agriculturalregion, linked by passenger and freight steamboat routes. These steamboat routes operated on the Chesapeake Bayand major rivers until the 1930s before the building of highways and the Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridgeon U.S. Highway 301. Weekend excursion boats also carried Washingtonians to small amusement parks and amusement pavilions at numerous shore locations. From 1949 (1943 in some places) to 1968, the region was popular for its slot machinegambling (now illegal). While the steamboats are long gone, more than three quarters of the land area is still rural, a mixture of forest and farmland. [cite web
title=Summer 2007 — Draft Existing Conditions Summary
publisher=Maryland Department of Transportation
During recent times, the region experienced suburban development as the Washington
suburbsexpanded southward. This expansion took place primarily in Prince George's County, and around Waldorf(a regional shopping hub) and St. Charles(a planned community in Charles County), Lexington Park (St. Mary's County) and Prince Frederick (Calvert County). This expansion of the Washington DC metropolitan area has caused much of southern Maryland's formerly predominant southern culture to fade giving way to a rapidly growing northeastern culture that is found throughout much of the BosWasharea [cite web
title=Bay's Dialects Slowly Dying
author=David A. Fahrenthold
date=February 19, 2005
publisher=The Washington Post
accessdate=2007-12-08] . However, as noted, land-use maps show that the area is still primarily low-density. [cite web
title=Patuxent River – 2000 Land Use / Land Cover
publisher=Maryland Department of Planning
Many southern Marylanders work at
Andrews Air Force Base, the U.S. Census Bureauor at Patuxent River Naval Air Stationand its related industries. Other smaller industries include a nuclear power plant [ [http://www.constellationenergy.com/generation/ccnpp.asp Power generation: Calvert Cliffs Nuclear Power Plant] . (2006). Constellation Energy. Retrieved December 22, 2006.] and a liquified natural gas terminal [ [http://www.calvertchamber.org/m/20/Dominion-Cove-Point-LNG Dominion Cove Point LNG] . (2005). Calvert Chamber of Commerce. Retrieved December 22, 2006.] (both in Lusby), a Naval ordinance test ground (at Indian Head), [ [http://www.ih.navy.mil Indian Head division, Naval Surface Warfare Center] . (n.d.). United States Department of Navy. Retrieved December 22, 2006.] an electric power plant (at Aquasco) [ [http://www.mirant.com/our_business/where_we_work/chalkpoint.htm Chalk Point Generating Plant] . (n.d.). MirantCorporation. Retrieved December 22, 2006.] and an oil terminal [ [http://www.mirant.com/our_business/where_we_work/pineypoint.htm Mirant Piney Point] . (n.d.). Mirant Corporation. Retrieved December 22, 2006.] (at Piney Point). The beautiful towns of Solomons Islandand Chesapeake Beach are favorite weekend tourist resorts. Maryland International Raceway and Budds Creek Raceway near Chaptico attract many auto racing enthusiasts.
The growing of
tobacco, once a dominant crop, has declined greatly because of state government farm buyouts during the 1990s. St. Mary's Countyis home to Amishand Mennonitecommunities. In addition, two competing groups (only formally organized in recent years) claim to be the Piscataway Native American tribe, a tribe that lived along the Potomac River and Chesapeake Bay in southern Maryland (see We-Sorts). Fishing, boating and crabbing are popular activities in this region; large marinas are found in the Solomons Islandand North Beachareas. However, the population of fish and other marine life is threatened by pollution and environmental factors. Ancient marine fossils are abundant at Calvert Cliffs.
The region's northern boundary passes through Prince George's County and
Anne Arundel County, east of Washington. Its eastern boundary is the Chesapeake Bayand its southern and western boundary is the Potomac River, Maryland's boundary with Virginia.
Food and Cuisine
Perhaps the most notable food dish originating from Southern Maryland is
stuffed ham, which is cabbage, kale, onions, spices and seasonings that are chopped and mixed, then stuffed into deep slits slashed in a whole, corned ham.Fact|date=December 2007 Seafoodis popular amongst Southern Marylanders, given the region's location along the Chesapeake Bayand its tributaries. Both steamed crabs and crab cakesare considered Southern Maryland delicacies due to the large amount of harvesting of blue crabs from the bay. Also popular are oysters, which were once fished from the bay in great numbers, and served either fried, raw or stuffed. Rockfish is considered one of the most prized fish dishes in Southern Maryland.Fact|date=October 2007
Towns and communities in Southern Maryland
Towns and places in Southern Maryland include:
Notable Southern Marylanders
Steny Hoyer(D-Md), Majority Leaderof the United States House of Representatives, represents southern Maryland as the representative for Maryland's Fifth Congressional District and lives in Mechanicsville, Maryland.
* Two former first ladies hail from southern Maryland:
Louisa Catherine Johnson Adams, wife of John Quincy Adams, and Margaret Mackall Smith Taylor, wife of Zachary Taylor.
MarylandState Comptroller Louis Goldsteinwas from Calvert County; also Maryland Senate President Mike Millercurrently lives there.
* Co-discover of the
North Pole, Matthew Hensonand Captain Raphael Semmesof the Confederate ship "Alabama" were born near Nanjemoy, Charles County. Prominent revolutionary war statesmen John Hanson, Thomas Stone, and General Smallwood were from Charles County. Dr. Samuel Mudd, convicted of conspiracy to murder in the Abraham Lincoln assassination, was also a native of Charles County.
* Best-selling Spy thriller novelist
Tom Clancylives in Calvert Countyin a home on Chesapeake Bay.
* Television journalists
Ted Koppel, Judy Woodruff, Al Hunt, newspapermen Ben Bradleeand Sally Quinn, and weatherman Doug Hillall have houses in St. Mary's County.Fact|date=June 2008
Maryland comptroller Louis L. Goldsteinlived in Calvert County. A portion of Route 2-4 in Calvert Countywas renamed in his honor after his death.
Arthur Storer, first astronomerin the American colonies and the original namesake for Halley's Comet, lived the latter part of his life in Calvert County. A planetariumin Prince Frederick bears his name.
*Thomas Johnson, the first elected
governorof Marylandand U.S. Supreme Courtjustice. The Governor Thomas Johnson Bridgeconnecting Calvert and St. Mary's counties was named in his honor.
MarylandState Senator and Patuxent Riveradvocate Bernie Fowlerlives in Calvert County. Every year, in Broomes Island Fowler will hold a "wade-in" with other public officials to help determine the clarity levels of the Patuxent.
Christina Milianonce lived in Waldorf. [cite web
title =Christina Milian Biography
work =ChristinaMilian.org - The Official Site of Christina Milian
publisher =Milian Corporation
accessdate =2007-12-14 ]
* Joel and
Benji Maddenfrom the band Good Charlottegrew up in Waldorf. [Citation| last =Hoard| first =Christian| title = Young, Hopeless, Rich, and Famous| magazine =Rolling Stone| year =2003| date =April 9, 2003| url =http://www.rollingstone.com/news/coverstory/good_charlotte_young_hopeless_rich_and_famous ]
Turkey Tayac, Piscataway tribal leader and herbal medicine man
Robert Stethem, murder victim during hijacking of TWA Flight 847was from Pinefield,the northern section of Waldorf
* Senator and Astronaut
John Glenntrained at Patuxent River Naval Air Station many years ago, as did Alan Shepherdand other future astronauts.
Colleges in Southern Maryland
Colleges in Southern Maryland include:
College of Southern Maryland, a community college with campuses in Charles, Calvert and St. Mary's counties
St. Mary's College of Maryland
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