Maryland, one of the eastern states of the United States. Maryland is bordered by Pennsylvania on the north, Delaware and the Atlantic Ocean on the east, Virginia on the south, and West Virginia on the southwest and west. Washington, D.C., the national capital, is an enclave along the Virginia border. The Potomac River forms most of Maryland’s western boundary and Chesapeake Bay deeply indents the eastern part of the state. Annapolis is the state capital and Baltimore is the largest city. The Maryland colony was founded in 1634 and was named for the wife of English King Charles I, Queen Henrietta Maria. Colonial Maryland attracted many settlers and, as its economy prospered, so did its social, political, and cultural life. Maryland entered the Union on April 28, 1788, as the 7th of the original 13 states.
During the late 18th and early 19th centuries, Maryland and its residents were involved in many of the events relating to the attainment of independence by the United States and to the early struggles of the young republic. During the Civil War (1861-1865), Maryland, a border state, became part of the great battleground between North and South, but the state itself stayed within the Union. During the first half of the 20th century the economic development of Maryland was marked by a shift in emphasis from farming to manufacturing. The state is now primarily an industrial state. Despite this shift, agriculture is still carried on throughout most of the state. Maryland has no official nickname. However, the most commonly accepted name, and also one of the oldest, is the Old Line State. This nickname honors the memory of Maryland’s regiments of the line, which fought with distinction in the American Revolution (1775-1783). Encarta © "United States" © Emmanuel Buchot and Encarta
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