Portal:Maryland

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Maryland is a state located in the Mid-Atlantic region of the United States, bordering Virginia, West Virginia, and Washington, D.C. to its south and west; Pennsylvania to its north; and Delaware to its east. Maryland was the seventh state to ratify the United States Constitution, and has three occasionally used nicknames: the Old Line State, the Free State, and the Chesapeake Bay State. Maryland is also considered to be the birthplace of religious freedom in America dating back to its earliest colonial days when it was made a refuge for persecuted Catholics from England by George Calvert the first Lord Baltimore, and the first English proprietor of the then-Maryland colonial grant. Maryland is one of the smallest states in terms of area, as well as one of the most densely populated states of the United States. The state's largest city is Baltimore, and its capital is Annapolis. Although the state is officially claimed to be named after Queen Henrietta Maria, many historians believe Maryland was named after Mary, the mother of Jesus, by George Calvert, 1st Lord Baltimore prior to his death in 1632. The original intent may never be known. Maryland has the highest median household income, making it the wealthiest state in the nation.

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David Simon, creator of The Wire

The Wire is an American television drama set and produced in Baltimore, Maryland. Created, produced, and primarily written by author and former police reporter David Simon, the series is broadcast by the premium cable network HBO in the United States. The Wire premiered on June 2, 2002, with 50 episodes airing over the course of its first four seasons. The fifth season, which Simon has said will be the show's last, premiered on January 6, 2008.

The plot of the first season centers on the ongoing struggles between police units and drug-dealing gangs on the west side of the city, and is told from both points of view. Subsequent seasons have focused on other facets of the city. The large cast consists mainly of character actors who are little known for their other roles. Simon has said that despite its presentation as a crime drama, the show is "really about the American city, and about how we live together. It's about how institutions have an effect on individuals, and how... whether you're a cop, a longshoreman, a drug dealer, a politician, a judge [or] lawyer, you are ultimately compromised and must contend with whatever institution you've committed to."

The Wire has received critical acclaim for its realistic portrayal of urban life and uncommonly deep exploration of sociological themes, and has been called the best show on television by TIME, Entertainment Weekly, The Guardian, the Chicago Tribune, Slate, the San Francisco Chronicle and the Philadelphia Daily News.

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Photo of Babe Ruth as a New York Yankee

George Herman Ruth, Jr. (February 6, 1895 – August 16, 1948), also popularly known as "Babe", "The Bambino", and "The Sultan of Swat", was an American Major League baseball player from 1914-1935. He is widely regarded as one of the greatest baseball players in history. Many polls place him as the number one player of all time.

Although he spent most of his career as an outfielder with the New York Yankees, Ruth began his career as a successful starting pitcher for the Boston Red Sox. He compiled an 89-46 win-loss record during his time with the Red Sox and set several World Series pitching records. In 1918, Ruth started to play in the outfield and at first base so he could help the team on a day-to-day basis as a hitter. In 1919, appearing in 111 games as an outfielder, he hit 29 home runs to break Ned Williamson's record for a single season.

In 1920, Red Sox owner Harry Frazee sold Ruth to the New York Yankees. In his next 15 seasons in New York, Ruth led the league or placed in the top ten in batting average, slugging percentage, runs, total bases, home runs, RBI, and walks several times. Ruth's 60 home runs in 1927 was the single season home run record for 34 years until it was broken by Roger Maris. Ruth's lifetime total of 714 home runs was once considered one of Major League Baseball's "unbreakable" records, but Hank Aaron broke it in 1974. In contrast, after he was sold from the Red Sox, the Red Sox franchise floundered for decades after having been previously the most successful major league team prior to the trade. This great disparity of success between the Yankees and Red Sox eventually led to a superstition that was dubbed the "Curse of the Bambino", a "curse" that effectively ended in 2004 when the Red Sox won their first World Series title in 86 years.

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Thomas Viaduct
  • ...that the Thomas Viaduct (pictured) over the Patapsco River was the first multi-span masonry railroad bridge in the United States when it was constructed between 1833 and 1835?

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