Baltimore County, Maryland
|Baltimore County, Maryland|
The Baltimore County Courthouse
|Nickname(s): "B-More County"|
Location in the U.S. state of Maryland
Maryland's location in the U.S.
|Founded||June 30, 1659|
|Named for||Cecil Calvert, 2nd Baron Baltimore|
|• Total||682 sq mi (1,766 km2)|
|• Land||598 sq mi (1,549 km2)|
|• Water||83 sq mi (215 km2), 12%|
|• Density||1,219/sq mi (471/km²)|
|Congressional districts||1st, 2nd, 3rd, 7th|
|Time zone||Eastern: UTC-5/-4|
Baltimore County is a county located in the northern part of the U.S. state of Maryland. As of 2015, the county's estimated population stood at 831,128, making it the third-most populous county in Maryland. Its county seat is in Towson, in the north-central section just north of the adjacent City of Baltimore. The name of the County was derived from the barony of the Proprietor of the Calverts' new colony in the Province of Maryland, Cecil Calvert, 2nd Baron Baltimore, (1605-1675),, and the town of "Baltimore" in County Cork, of southern coastal Ireland.
Baltimore County is included in the Baltimore-Columbia-Towson, MD Metropolitan Statistical Area, which is also included in the Washington-Baltimore-Arlington, DC-MD-VA-WV-PA Combined Statistical Area. It is part of the Northeast Megalopolis stretching from Boston, MA to Washington, D.C..
Baltimore County no longer includes the City of Baltimore, a maritime "port of entry" established in 1706, with the Town founded in 1729. The Town of Baltimore became the "county seat" of Baltimore County in 1767, with construction later of a new downtown courthouse. The Town of Baltimore was Incorporated as a City - 1796/1797. After several small parcels of land were added to the Town during 1780s, larger segments of territory were annexed from Baltimore County in three major acts. First adding areas known as the "Precincts" on the west, north (up to North Avenue), east and southwest sides in 1816 and second, on the western and northern boundaries in 1888. The East side industrial communities of Canton and Highlandtown, with large factory and business owners who resisted and opposed annexation, were not annexed by Baltimore City until 30 years later. The third and last major annexation took place 1918-1919, which again took territory from the County on all three sides (west, north and east) as well as to the south for the first time from Anne Arundel County, along the south shores of the Patapsco River. With adoption of the second Maryland state constitution in 1851, provisions mandated separation of Baltimore City from the County, having it assume one of the few "independent city" status in the United States, created the city on the same level with other 23 counties of the state, and gave limited "home rule" powers separate from the authority of the General Assembly of Maryland. A constitutional amendment, (little noticed and causing not much controversy or realization of future impact at the time, even by the city) was approved by referendum by state voters to the 1867 Maryland Constitution in 1948, prohibiting any future annexations without approval from residents in affected territories. Population reached a maximum of 959,000 in 1950, and has declined every decade since as growth expanded to a greater metropolitan area, now involving five surrounding counties in the half-century since. Although causing extensive city-county hostilities during the time of 1950s, 60's, and 70's Civil Rights movement, with increasing urban social ills faced by the County's older "inner suburbs" by the 1980s, an atmosphere of metro cooperation has emerged with the drawing of cross-border state assembly districts, and organization of regional government agencies and increasing state assumption of powers.
Among the county's major employers are MedStar Franklin Square Medical Center on the east side in Rossville, the Social Security Administration, which has its national headquarters on the west side in Woodlawn, and Black & Decker in Towson. During World War II, the Glenn L. Martin Company in the far eastern county of Middle River had 53,000 employees manufacturing combat airplanes and aviation equipment for the war effort and the Bethlehem Steel Corporation had more than 30,000 workers at its sprawling Sparrows Point steel mill on the waterfront peninsula, largest in the world at one time. Of the 410,100 persons in the county's workforce as of 2009, 25% are employed in the fields of education, health, and human services, and 10% in retailing, with less than 1% in agriculture. The county is also home to the University of Maryland, Baltimore County in the southwestern corner of the County, between Catonsville and Arbutus, as well as home to Towson University, now the second largest college/university in the state, located north of the City at the county seat. Towson is also the home of the formerly all-woman Goucher College liberal arts school (now co-ed). The County is also home to the recently renamed Stevenson University (formerly Villa Julie College), expanding from a business and secretarial school to a wide curriculum. with campuses located in Stevenson and Owings Mills.
- 1 History
- 2 Law and government
- 3 Geography
- 4 Transportation
- 5 Demographics
- 6 Economy
- 7 Government and infrastructure
- 8 Education
- 9 Family support services
- 10 Communities
- 11 Notable residents
- 12 See also
- 13 References
- 14 External links
The earliest known documentary record of the county politically in the Maryland State Archives in the Hall of Records in the state capital of Annapolis is January 12, 1659, when a writ was issued on behald of the General Assembly of Maryland to its sheriff and is considered by historians to be its official year of "erection" (founding/establishment date) among the now twenty-three counties of the State, as it assumes that a certain amount of organization and appointments in the middle 17th Century had already occurred. Previously, Old Baltimore County was more known as a geographical entity than a political one, with its territorial limits consisting of most of northeastern Maryland, then the northwestern frontier of the Province and included the present day jurisdictions of Baltimore City, Cecil, and Harford Counties, as well as parts of Carroll, Anne Arundel, Frederick, Howard, and Kent Counties. In 1674, a proclamation of the Proprietor, established the then extensive boundary lines for old Baltimore County. Over the next century, various segments of the Old County were sliced off as population and settlements increased in the fringe regions so as to have a shorter distance to newly established county seats with their courts and commercial businesses.
In 1674, a portion of northeastern Baltimore County, as well as a portion of northwestern Kent County, was split off to erect Cecil County. In 1748, a portion of western Baltimore County, as well as a portion of Prince George's County to the south, were split off to erect Frederick County. In 1773, Harford County to the east was split off from Baltimore County. In 1837, another part of western Baltimore County was combined with a part of eastern Frederick County to erect Carroll County. After the adjustment of the County's southern boundary with Anne Arundel County stated to be the upper Middle and Western Branches of the Patapsco River in XXXX, a portion of its northwestern area was designated in 1838 as the "Western District" or "Howard District" of Arundel and in 1851 was officially separated to form the new Howard County (named for Revolutionary War commander of the "Maryland Line" of the Continental Army, Col. John Eager Howard, [1752-1827]).
The separation of Baltimore County from Baltimore City which it surrounds on three sides (east, north and west) occurred on July 4, 1851, as a result of the adoption of the 1851 second state constitution. Towsontown was voted in a referendum by the voting citizens as the new "county seat" several years later on February 13, 1854. A new Baltimore County Courthouse was authorized to be built facing Washington Avenue, between Chesapeake and Pennsylvania Avenues to replace the previous courthouse and governmental offices then centered for near 85 years in the City, which had been the official "county seat" since just before the American Revolution. Now surrounded by manicured flower gardens, shrubs and curved walkways, the historical landmark is built of local limestone and marble, it was completed and dedicated in 1855. Several additional wings and annexes have been added in 1910, 1923 and 1958, some done so well architecturally that they blend in together quite well as one unit. By the 1970s, the County's legal system and governmental offices had grown so much that a separate modernistic "County Courts Building" was erected to the west behind the old Courthouse with its annexes separated by a paved plaza which is used for employee/visitors relaxations and official ceremonies.
Before that, the Baltimore County court sessions had been held in private residences before 1674, with a small amount of documentary evidence. seat had been located in old Joppa, near the mouth of the Great Gunpowder Falls since 1712. Later by 1724, the Assembly authorized Thomas Tolley, Capt. John Taylor, Daniel Scott, Lancelot Todd and John Stokes to purchase 20 acres from a tract named "Taylor's Choice" after John Taylor who also held other parcels in the area. The Ordinance directed that the land be divided into 40 lots with streets and alleys to accompany the courthouse and jail which had already been previously erected. By 1750 had some 50 houses (including a few large two-story brick structures), a church (St. John's Anglican Parish), courthouse, 3 stone warehouses, inns, taverns, stores, a public wharf, "gallows-tree" with an "Amen Corner" with pillories and whipping posts but which is now extinct (but located northeast of the City near present-day suburban "Joppatowne" off Harford Road). When with a bit of financial pressure and paying for the cost of a new courthouse for 300 pounds sterling, dominant business, commercial and political residents of old Baltimore Town were able to get the county seat transferred to their growing and bustling port town in 1767, with the first courthouse constructed in 1768 at a new "Courthouse Square", (today on North Calvert Street, between East Lexington and East Fayette Streets), later site of the present "Battle Monument Square", constructed 1815-1822, commemorating defenses of the city and county in War of 1812 with bombardment of Fort McHenry by the British Royal Navy fleet in the Patapsco River, the two-day stand-off in the fortifications dug east of the city on Loudenschlager's Hill (now "Hampstead Hill" in today's Patterson Park) and the earlier Battle of North Point, in "Godly Woods" on the "Patapsco Neck" peninsula in southeastern county, commemorated ever since by Defenders' Day (a city, county and state official holiday) on September 12–14, 1814. A second city-county courthouse constructed in 1805-1809 was moved to the western side of the Square at North Calvert and East Lexington Streets. (In the future, after the City-County separation, a third, present courthouse for the increasingly complicated and more numerous judicial system for a growing metropolis, including the lower magistrates, commissioners, district and circuit courts, orphans (inheritances/wills) court, small claims court and the old Supreme Bench of Baltimore City was constructed on the entire western block of North Calvert, East Lexington, East Fayette and Saint Paul Streets from 1896 to 1900, later renamed in 1985 as the Clarence M. Mitchell, Jr. City Circuit Courthouse (for the famous Baltimorean and national civil rights leader, Clarence M. Mitchell, Jr., (1911-1984), reputed to be "considered the 101st U.S. Senator").
The County has a number of properties and sites of local, state and national historical interest on the "National Register of Historic Places" which is maintained by the National Park Service of the U.S. Department of the Interior by the "Historic Sites Act" of August 1935.
The first county seat of Baltimore County was known today as "Old Baltimore". It was located on the Bush River on land that in 1773 became part of Harford County. In 1674, the General Assembly passed "An Act for erecting a Court-house and Prison in each County within this Province." The site of the court house and jail for Baltimore County was evidently "Old Baltimore" near the Bush River. We know this because in 1683, the General Assembly passed "An Act for Advancement of Trade" to "establish towns, ports, and places of trade, within the province." One of the towns established by the act in Baltimore County was "on Bush River, on Town Land, near the Court-House." The court house on the Bush River referenced in the 1683 Act was in all likelihood the one created by the 1674 Act. "Old Baltimore" was in existence as early as 1674, but we don't know what if anything happened on the site prior to that year. The exact location of Old Baltimore was lost for years. It was certain that the location was somewhere on the site of the present-day Aberdeen Proving Grounds (APG), a U.S. Army weapons testing facility. APG’s Cultural Resource Management Program took up the task of finding Old Baltimore. The firm of R. Christopher Goodwin & Associates (Goodwin) was contracted for the project. After Goodwin first performed historical and archival work, they coordinated their work with existing landscape features to locate the site of Old Baltimore. APG’s Explosive Ordnance Disposal of Army personnel went in with Goodwin to defuse any unexploded ordnance. The field team worked from fall 1997 through winter 1998. The team dug 420 test pits, and they uncovered several artifacts including a King Charles II farthing coin, French and English gun flints, as well as glass, metal and other items. The team also uncovered a brick foundation that proved to be the remains of the tavern owned by colonist James Phillips, a prominent land holder in the area. Along with James Phillips, the other most prominent land holder in Old Baltimore was William Osbourne. Osbourne operated the ferry across the Bush River. In his article Migrations of Baltimore Town, the Rev. George Armistead Leakin related a letter he received from Dr. George I. Hays. In that letter, Dr. Hays related an event in William Osborne’s life that his grandmother, born Sarah Osborne, and his great-aunt, Fanny Osborne shared with him. The account is of a raid by the Susquehannocks (a notoriously fierce war-like tribe from further north in Pennsylvania) who took William Osbourne’s oldest son. Osbourne and a party were unsuccessful in their attempt to rescue the boy. The boy was never seen by Osbourne again, and it is reported that he remained broken-hearted until his death.
In 1695, the "Old Baltimore" courthouse had evidently been abandoned, for in that year the county justices advertised for a purchaser of the late courthouse at Bush River and adjoining land. Apparently a new courthouse at "Simm's Choice" on the Baltimore County side of the Little Gunpowder Falls had been under construction since 1692 and in 1700, Michael Judd, the builder of the house of justice sold the lot on which it was situated to the county justices. This move away from the Bush River area reflects the growing economic and political importance of the Gunpowder region. In the next decade of the 18th Century, the county seat would move again, this time to Joppa where it would remain until 1768, indicative that the "Simm's Choice" location was less totally desirable.
The provincial assembly attempted to create at least two other towns during the county's early existence, but neither attempt moved very far beyond the planning stage. In 1680s, the Assembly ordered that "Patapsco Town" be laid out on Sparrows Point. A jury traveled to the land and marked off town lots, but few other improvements were made on the site. Foster's Neck in the fork of the two Gunpowder Rivers ("Great" and "Little"), exhibited a similar fate. Created by a legislative act in 1706, the projected town was abandoned the following year. With a large number of plantations and small farms, some on a subsistence level,and the methods of business and commerce in this era made town life unnecessary, and without the attraction of a county courthouse, artificial ventures like "Patapsco Town" and "Foster's Neck" experienced a quick and painless death. However, a port and wharfing site such as Elk Ridge Landing on the upper Patapsco River's Western Branch, soon became very prosperous and busy in the 18th Century which was established on the "falls" of the river which was the dividing point from which below the rapids and rocks of the area, the river at that time was deep enough to permit loaded sailing merchantmen to travel upstream a considerable distance in this southern border of the County with Anne Arundel County (and future Howard County (after 1851). The Landing was a designated "port of entry" and was the terminus of several "rolling roads" on which horse or oxen-drawn hogsheads (huge barrels) packed with tobacco were wheeled down to the Landing/port to market and to be loaded on the sailing ships for London and Europe. However, with the later gradual silting up over the decades from soil erosion and primitive poor farming cultivation methods of the upper Patapsco, southwest of the later 1729 Baltimore Town on the deeper Northwest Branch of the river, the maritime economy of the Landing wilted away and later by the next 19th Century became and important stop on the rapid new form of ground transportation, the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad and the main north-south East Coast highway for wagons and carriages, later motor vehicles, on the Washington Boulevard or the designated U.S. Route 1 by the 1926 as the town of Elkridge was a stopping point, along with its famous Elkridge Furnace Inn and the earlier local iron ore deposits and small foundries.
Law and government
Baltimore County has had a charter government since 1956. The government consists of a County Executive and a seven-member County Council. The County Executive and Council members are elected in years of gubernatorial elections, and the County Executive may serve a maximum of two consecutive terms.
As there are no incorporated cities or towns within Baltimore County, the county government provides all local services to its residents, many of which are normally associated with city-type governmental agencies. (Howard County is the only other Maryland county containing no incorporated cities within it.)
The County replaced its older traditional system of an elected Board of County Commissioners, with members elected at large, in 1956 with a more modern and useful "executive-council" system of government to better serve a large, increasingly urban, jurisdiction. Since then it has had eleven county executives and one "acting" executive, of which ten were Democrats and two Republicans. The former Vice President of the United States, Spiro T. Agnew, served as the third executive from 1962 to 1966 and subsequently was elected Governor of Maryland, serving 1967 to 1969, when he was elected on a national ticket with 37th President Richard M. Nixon in 1968, inaugurated 1969. He was later accused of corruption and bribery while serving earlier as the County executive and pleaded "no contest" to unprecedented Federal criminal charges and was forced to resign in 1973, prior to the separate "Watergate" political scandal which enveloped President Nixon and forced him to step down a year later.
Historically, Baltimore County leans Democratic, but not as overwhelmingly as Baltimore City. In general, the northern portions of the county lean Republican, while the southern portion is more Democratic.
The Baltimore County State's Attorney is responsible for prosecuting the felony, misdemeanor and juvenile cases occurring in the county. The current State's Attorney is Scott Shellenberger, a Democrat. His predecessor was Sandra A. O'Connor, a Republican who served eight terms before retiring in 2006.
The Baltimore County Police Department is responsible for policing the county. The current head of the department is Chief James W. Johnson.
Established in the middle 17th Century, with tradition and responsibility weighed onto the office, the Sheriff of Baltimore County was at first filled by the county justices from 1662 to 1676. After then the Court submitted three names from which the colonial governor chose a sheriff. Although the length of terms of office varied in the early years, by 1692, a uniform two-year term was imposed, but seven years later to a three-year term with separate commissions. He acted as the chief local representative of the Proprietary Government, and because he was appointed by the governor, it was in the sheriff's best interests to see that the laws and obligations of the Province were upheld. His duties then included the collection of all public taxes and after 1692, the collection of the yearly poll tax of forty pounds of tobacco for the support of the Anglican (Church of England) clergy and parishes. A sheriff received a percentage of all monies collected, generally about five percent. He also received a yearly salary for the other performed duties, such as reporting to the governor on affairs within the County, taking or estimating the census periodically, conveying official laws and proprietary requests to the county courts, and selecting juries for the court sessions. Along with enforcing all provincial laws, he posted newly passed laws on the courthouse door or other public places so the people and citizens could be aware of any new legislation. While his primary duties was to serve the Proprietor, the sheriff was also aware of the problems that many poor planters and tradesmen faced. With taxes, yearly quit-rents and other costly expenditures, many of the poorer settlers were unable to pay their obligations when due. The sheriff often extended credit to these planters and paid their immediate obligations out of his own pocket. This lessened the impact of taxes for the poor, who repaid the sheriff after their harvests were brought in.
Continuing into today, the Baltimore County Sheriff's Department is responsible for security of the two major County Circuit Courts buildings and various courtrooms elsewhere as well as process and warrant service. Sherriff's Deputies are sworn police officers and share the same powers of the more recently organized County Police Department. Currently, R. J. Fisher is the Baltimore County Sheriff.
The Maryland State Police (MSP); Marcus L. Brown, Superintendent and Maryland Transportation Authority Police (MdTA); Michael Kundrat, Chief are responsible for law enforcement on Interstate highways and transportation facilities that traverse Baltimore County.
The Maryland Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services is headquartered at Suite 1000 at 300 East Joppa Road in the Towson CDP. The Maryland State Police is headquartered at 1201 Reisterstown Road in the Pikesville CDP.
The Baltimore County Fire Department (B.Co.F.D.) provides fire protection, emergency medical services and emergency rescue to residents of the county and surrounding areas, including Baltimore City, through mutual-aid pacts with those jurisdictions. The department consists of both paid and volunteer companies that provide services to overlapping territories. Currently, there are 25 career (paid) stations and 33 volunteer stations. There are more than 1,000 paid personnel and more than 2,000 volunteers. The department also conducts annual fire inspections on commercial properties, fire investigation and fire prevention education activities as well as water and tactical rescue in the region. John J. Hohman is currently Chief of the Baltimore County Fire Department.
Fire Department Support
Central Alarmers (Station 155) is a private organization that provides fireground rehab support to firefighters (personal relief stations and refreshments) during large or prolonged response incidents in the central and eastern regions of the county.
The current County Executive, sworn in for a second term on December 1, 2014, is Kevin B. Kamenetz, who previously was a councilman from the northwest area on the Baltimore County Council. The County Executive oversees the executive branch of the County government that consists of a number of offices and departments. The executive branch is charged with implementing County law and overseeing the operation of the County government.
The County Council adopts ordinances and resolutions, and has all of the County's legislative powers.
The current County Council as of December 1, 2014 includes 4 Democrats and 3 Republicans.
|District 1||Tom Quirk||Democratic|
|District 2||Vicki Almond||Democratic|
|District 3||Wade Kach||Republican|
|District 4||Julian E. Jones, Jr.||Democratic|
|District 5||David S. Marks||Republican|
|District 6||Cathy Bevins||Democratic|
|District 7||Todd K. Crandell||Republican|
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 682 square miles (1,770 km2), of which 598 square miles (1,550 km2) is land and 83 square miles (210 km2) (12%) is water. It is the third-largest county in Maryland by land area. The larger portion of the terrain is undulating, with bold hills often rising to a height of 800 feet (240 m) above tide water. The highest elevation is approximately 960 feet (290 m) above sea level, along the Pennsylvania state line near Steltz. The lowest elevation is sea level along the shoreline of the Chesapeake Bay.
Much of Baltimore County is suburban in character, straddling the border between the Piedmont plateau to the northwest and, in the southern and southeastern regions of the county bordering the Patapsco River and the Chesapeake Bay, the Atlantic coastal plain. Northern Baltimore County is primarily rural, with a landscape of rolling hills and deciduous forests characteristic of the Southeastern mixed forests and shares the geography with its neighbors to the east and west, Carroll County and Harford County, and going north across the historic Mason–Dixon line into Adams County and York County in south central Pennsylvania.
Adjacent counties and independent city
- York County, Pennsylvania (north)
- Carroll County (west)
- Harford County (east)
- Anne Arundel County (south)
- Howard County (southwest)
- Baltimore City (south)
National protected area
State protected area
The Maryland Transit Administration (MTA) operates three rail systems—one light rail, one rapid transit, and one commuter rail—in the Baltimore area; all three systems have stations in Baltimore County. The heavy-rail Metro Subway runs northwest of the city to Owings Mills; the Light Rail system runs north of Baltimore City to Hunt Valley and south of the city through Baltimore Highlands with some routes terminating at Baltimore/Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport located in Linthicum (Anne Arundel County), Maryland. Commuter MARC Train service is available in the county at Halethorpe, St. Denis, and Martin State Airport stations.
Both CSX Transportation and Amtrak mainlines run through the county. Former rail lines running through the County beginning in the 19th Century were the Maryland and Pennsylvania Railroad and the Northern Central Railway (previously the Baltimore and Susquehanna Railroad, later becoming part of the old Pennsylvania Railroad). The Ma & Pa and parts of the Northern Central were abandoned. The present-day streetcar/trolley line coming north from Anne Arundel County and the Baltimore-Washington Thurgood Marshall International Airport through Baltimore City uses the Northern Central right-of-way south of Cockeysville and Timonium; starting slightly north of that, the right-of-way was converted into the popular hiking, biking and jogging pathway from Loch Raven to the Mason–Dixon line with Pennsylvania known now as the Torrey C. Brown Rail Trail, named for a former state secretary of natural resources.
|Population before 1860 includes town and (1797)
city of Baltimore. Population decline in 1890
and 1920 census figures reflect annexations by the
City of Baltimore.
As of the census of 2000, there were 754,292 people, 299,877 households, and 198,518 families residing in the county. The population density was 1,260 people per square mile (487/km²). There were 313,734 housing units at an average density of 524 per square mile (202/km²). The racial makeup of the county was 74.39% White, 20.10% Black or African American, 0.25% Native American, 3.17% Asian, 0.03% Pacific Islander, 0.62% from other races, and 1.43% from two or more races. 1.83% of the population were Hispanic or Latino of any race. 18.4% were of German, 10.8% Irish, 7.3% English, 7.0% Italian, 6.1% US or American and 5.4% Polish ancestry according to Census 2000. There is also a large Jewish population that migrated from Park Heights into the communities of Pikesville, Owings Mills and Reisterstown, referred to by Jewish residents as "100,000 Jews in three zip codes". According to the North American Jewish Data Bank as of 2011[update] Baltimore County is 7.5% Jewish with a Jewish population of around 60,000 people.
There were 299,877 households out of which 30.20% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 49.40% were married couples living together, 12.80% had a female householder with no husband present, and 33.80% were non-families. 27.30% of all households were made up of individuals and 10.10% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.46 and the average family size was 3.00.
In the county the population was spread out with 23.60% under the age of 18, 8.50% from 18 to 24, 29.80% from 25 to 44, 23.40% from 45 to 64, and 14.60% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 38 years. For every 100 females there were 90.00 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 86.00 males.
The median income for a household in the county was $50,667, and the median income for a family was $59,998. Males had a median income of $41,048 versus $31,426 for females. The per capita income for the county was $26,167. About 4.50% of families and 6.50% of the population were below the poverty line, including 7.20% of those under age 18 and 6.50% of those age 65 or over.
As of the 2010 Census the population of Baltimore County was 62.80% Non-Hispanic Whites, 26.05% Blacks, 0.33% Native American, 4.99% Asian, 0.04% Pacific Islander, 1.59% Some other race and 2.40% reporting more than one race. 4.19% of the Population was Hispanic.
As of the 2010 United States Census, there were 805,029 people, 316,715 households, and 205,113 families residing in the county. The population density was 1,345.5 inhabitants per square mile (519.5/km2). There were 335,622 housing units at an average density of 561.0 per square mile (216.6/km2). The racial makeup of the county was 64.6% white, 26.1% black or African American, 5.0% Asian, 0.3% American Indian, 1.6% from other races, and 2.4% from two or more races. Those of Hispanic or Latino origin made up 4.2% of the population. In terms of ancestry, 20.7% were German, 14.6% were Irish, 8.7% were English, 7.4% were Italian, 5.8% were Polish, and 5.0% were American.
Of the 316,715 households, 31.4% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 45.5% were married couples living together, 14.5% had a female householder with no husband present, 35.2% were non-families, and 28.3% of all households were made up of individuals. The average household size was 2.48 and the average family size was 3.04. The median age was 39.1 years.
The median income for a household in the county was $63,959 and the median income for a family was $78,385. Males had a median income of $53,104 versus $43,316 for females. The per capita income for the county was $33,719. About 5.3% of families and 8.1% of the population were below the poverty line, including 10.1% of those under age 18 and 7.6% of those age 65 or over.
According to the County's 2011 Comprehensive Annual Financial Report, the top employers in the county are:
|#||Employer||# of Employees|
|1||Social Security Administration/CMS||14,948|
|2||Baltimore County Public Schools||14,608|
|4||MedStar Franklin Square Medical Center||3,500|
|6||Greater Baltimore Medical Center||3,331|
|7||St. Joseph Medical Center||3,330|
|8||University of Maryland, Baltimore County||3,258|
|10||The Sheppard and Enoch Pratt Hospital||2,380|
Government and infrastructure
|This section requires expansion. (June 2015)|
Colleges and universities
The University System of Maryland maintains two universities in Baltimore County:
- Towson University in Towson, (founded 1866 as Maryland State Normal School in Baltimore City; renamed Maryland State Teachers College at Towson, 1935; Towson State College, 1963; Towson State University, 1976, Towson University, 1997).
- University of Maryland, Baltimore County in Catonsville, founded 1966.
There are also two private colleges in Baltimore County:
- Goucher College (in Towson), founded as Women's College of Baltimore, 1885.
- Stevenson University, formerly Villa Julie College (campuses in Stevenson and Owings Mills).
Other schools having a campus in Baltimore County:
- Loyola College in Maryland (in Hunt Valley, main campus in Baltimore at North Charles Street and East Cold Spring Lane, [formerly Loyola College, founded 1852]).
- The Community College of Baltimore County (CCBC), with campuses in Catonsville, Essex, and Dundalk.
- Arlington Baptist High School
- Baltimore Actors Theatre Conservatory
- Baltimore Lutheran School
- Beth Tfiloh Dahan Community School
- The Boys' Latin School of Maryland
- Calvert Hall College High School
- Cambridge School of Baltimore
- Garrison Forest School
- Jemicy School
- Loyola Blakefield
- Maryvale Preparatory School
- McDonogh School
- Mount de Sales Academy
- Notre Dame Preparatory School
- Oldfields School (all-girls')
- Our Lady of Grace School
- Our Lady of Mt. Carmel
- The Park School
- St. James Academy in Monkton
- St. Paul's School & St. Paul's School for Girls
- St. Timothy's School (all-girls')
Family support services
General counseling, trauma-based therapy, comprehensive support for victims of domestic violence, and in-home assistance for the adult disabled, are offered to Baltimore County residents by Family and Children's Services of Central Maryland (FCS), a private nonprofit organization. Some services are offered without charge; others are offered on a sliding-fee scale based on income. In addition, there are other private organizations providing various social services.
Baltimore County has no incorporated municipalities located entirely within its boundaries. The following census-designated places recognized by the Census Bureau:
- Baltimore Highlands
- Bowleys Quarters
- Mays Chapel
- Middle River
- Milford Mill
- Owings Mills
- Perry Hall
- Towson (county seat)
- White Marsh
Although not formally Census-Designated Places, these other communities are known locally and, in many cases, have their own post offices and are shown on roadmaps:
- Mario Dewar Barrett, Famous R&B singer
- All Time Low, punk-rock band, formed in 2003
- Spiro Agnew, former Vice President of the United States, Baltimore County Executive, and governor of Maryland
- Holmes Alexander (1906–1985), historian, journalist, columnist, and member of the Maryland House of Delegates
- Peter Angelos, prominent attorney and owner, Baltimore Orioles
- A. J. Burnett, Major League Baseball player
- David Byrne, lead singer Talking Heads
- Tom Clancy, well-known author of political thrillers
- Kevin Clash, puppeteer most famous for Sesame Street's Elmo
- Louis S. Diggs, Baltimore County historian
- Samuel Durrance, Astronaut/Physicist
- Robert Ehrlich, 60th Governor of Maryland
- Jane Frank, (1918–1986) artist (born in Baltimore, lived in Owings Mills and Towson most of her adult life)
- Lee Gatch, artist (born in a small rural community near Baltimore)
- Elaine Hamilton, abstract expressionist artist and Fulbright scholar
- Emily Spencer Hayden, photographer
- Foxhall P. Keene, (1867–1941), horse breeder and Olympic gold medalist polo player
- Stacy Keibler, Actress and Model
- Harvey Ladew, designer of Ladew Topiary Gardens
- Bucky Lasek, famous vert ramp skateboarder, from Dundalk
- G. E. Lowman, clergyman and early radio evangelist
- Carol Mann, golfer
- Jim McKay, ABC-TV sportscaster
- John Merryman, Civil War militia officer, Maryland politician, and subject of the landmark habeas corpus case, Ex parte Merryman
- Glenn Milstead, known as the actor "Divine"
- Mo'Nique, American comedian and actress
- Michael Phelps, Olympic Gold-Medalist swimmer
- Rosa Ponselle, opera singer
- Charles Carnan Ridgely, (1760–1829), governor of Maryland and master of the Hampton estate
- Eliza Ridgely, (1803–1867), third mistress of the Hampton estate and the subject of the well-known portrait painting Lady with a Harp
- Mike Rowe, TV show host for Dirty Jobs
- Pam Shriver, professional tennis player, Olympic Gold Medalist Tennis
- Kathleen Kennedy Townsend, politician and member of the Kennedy family
- Johnny Unitas, former Baltimore Colt and Hall of Fame football player
- John Waters, filmmaker
- Cheryl Wheeler, singer-songwriter
- Former Baltimore Orioles Jim Gentile, Gus Triandos, and Mark Belanger
- Former major league baseball shortstop and manager Billy Hunter
- Former major league baseball pitcher Bob Turley
- Former Baltimore Orioles and Hall of Famers Brooks Robinson and Jim Palmer
- Former Baltimore Colts Dick Szymanski and Don Shula (later coach of the Miami Dolphins)
- Professional lacrosse players Ryan Boyle and Conor Gill
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