Portal:Maryland

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Maryland (US: /ˈmɛrələnd/ (audio speaker iconlisten) MERR-ə-lənd) is a state in the Mid-Atlantic region of the United States, bordering Virginia, West Virginia, and the District of Columbia to its south and west; Pennsylvania to its north; and Delaware and the Atlantic Ocean to its east. Baltimore is the largest city in the state, and the capital is Annapolis. Among its occasional nicknames are Old Line State, the Free State, and the Chesapeake Bay State. It is named after the English Queen Henrietta Maria, known in England as Queen Mary, who was the French wife of King Charles I.

Before its coastline was explored by Europeans in the 16th century, Maryland was inhabited by several groups of Native Americans – mostly by the Algonquin, and, to a lesser degree, by the Iroquois and Siouian. As one of the original Thirteen Colonies of England, Maryland was founded by George Calvert, 1st Baron Baltimore, a Catholic convert who sought to provide a religious haven for Catholics persecuted in England. In 1632, Charles I of England granted Lord Baltimore a colonial charter, naming the colony after his wife, Queen Mary (Henrietta Maria of France). Unlike the Pilgrims and Puritans, who rejected Catholicism in their settlements, Lord Baltimore envisioned a colony where people of different religious sects would coexist under the principle of toleration. Accordingly, in 1649 the Maryland General Assembly passed an Act Concerning Religion, which enshrined this principle by penalizing anyone who "reproached" a fellow Marylander based on religious affiliation. Nevertheless, religious strife was common in the early years, and Catholics remained a minority, albeit in greater numbers than in any other English colony.

Maryland's early settlements and population centers clustered around rivers and other waterways that empty into the Chesapeake Bay. Its economy was heavily plantation-based and centered mostly on the cultivation of tobacco. Great Britain's need for cheap labor led to a rapid expansion of indentured servants, penal labor, and African slaves. In 1760, Maryland's current boundaries took form following the settlement of a long-running border dispute with Pennsylvania. Maryland was an active participant in the events leading up to the American Revolution, and by 1776, its delegates signed the Declaration of Independence. Many of its citizens subsequently played key political and military roles in the war. In 1790, the state ceded land for the establishment of the U.S. capital of Washington, D.C. (Full article...)

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Map of Maryland house of delegates electoral districts:
3 sub-districts 2 sub-districts 1 sub-district
  3 dem.
  2 dem., 1 rep.
  1 dem., 2 rep.
  3 rep.
  2 dem.
  1 dem., 1 rep.
  2 rep.
  1 dem.
  1 rep.
  1 ind.

The Maryland House of Delegates is the lower house of the Maryland General Assembly, the state legislature of the U.S. State of Maryland. Three delegates are elected from each district, though some districts are divided into sub-districts. In the original state constitution, four delegates were elected from each county to one-year terms, and two were elected from each of the major early cities of Baltimore and Annapolis. Reforms in the 1830s, however, led to the apportionment of delegates by population rather than geography, and by 1922, delegates served four year terms. The modern system of apportionment of seats began in 1972, when 47 districts of roughly equal population were identified, although sub-districts were created to ensure local representation for areas with too little population to warrant an entire district.

Delegates are elected in even years when the President of the United States is not being elected, similar to most other state offices in Maryland. The most recent election was in November 2018. Delegates are not term-limited. (Full article...)

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Chincoteague pony

The Chincoteague pony, also known as the Assateague horse, is a breed of horse that developed and lives in a feral condition on Assateague Island in the states of Virginia and Maryland in the United States. The breed was made famous by the Misty of Chincoteague series of novels written by Marguerite Henry starting in 1947. While phenotypically horse-like, they are commonly called "ponies". This is due in part to their smaller stature, created by the poor habitat on Assateague Island. Variation is found in their physical characteristics due to blood from different breeds being introduced at various points in their history. They can be any solid color and are often found in pinto patterns, which are a favorite with breed enthusiasts. Island Chincoteagues live on a diet of salt marsh plants and brush. This poor-quality and often scarce food combined with uncontrolled inbreeding created a propensity for conformation faults in the Chincoteague before outside blood was added beginning in the early 20th century.

Several legends are told regarding the origins of the Chincoteague ponies; the most popular holds that they descend from survivors of wrecked Spanish galleons off the Virginia coast. It is more likely that they descend from stock released on the island by 17th-century colonists looking to escape livestock laws and taxes on the mainland. In 1835, the practice of pony penning began, with residents rounding up ponies and removing some of them to the mainland. In 1924 the first official "Pony Penning Day" was held by the Chincoteague Volunteer Fire Company, where ponies were auctioned as a way to raise money for fire equipment. The annual event has continued in the same fashion almost uninterrupted to the present day. (Full article...)

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Star-Spangled Banner Flag House in 2011

The Star-Spangled Banner Flag House, formerly the Flag House & Star-Spangled Banner Museum, is a museum located in the Jonestown/Old Town and adjacent to Little Italy neighborhoods of eastern downtown Baltimore, Maryland, United States.

Built in 1793, it was the home of Mary Young Pickersgill when she moved to Baltimore in 1806 and the location where she later sewed the "Star Spangled Banner," in 1813, the huge out-sized garrison flag that flew over Fort McHenry at Whetstone Point in Baltimore Harbor in the summer of 1814 during the British Royal Navy attack in the Battle of Baltimore during the War of 1812. The museum contains furniture and antiques from the Federal period as well as items from the Pickersgill family. (Full article...)

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