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List of counties in Maryland

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Independent city and counties of Maryland
Map of maryland counties.jpg
LocationState of Maryland
Number23 counties and 1 Independent city
Populations(Counties only): 20,191 (Kent) – 1,004,709 (Montgomery)
Areas(Counties only): 254 square miles (660 km2) (Howard) – 695 square miles (1,800 km2) (Worcester)
GovernmentCounty government
Subdivisions(Counties): cities, towns, unincorporated communities, census designated place
(Independent city): Neighborhoods

There are 24 counties and county-equivalents in the U.S. state of Maryland. Though an independent city rather than a county, the City of Baltimore is considered the equal of a county for most purposes and is a county-equivalent. Many of the counties in Maryland were named for relatives of the Barons Baltimore, who were the proprietors of the Maryland colony from its founding in 1634 through 1771. The Barons Baltimore were Catholic, and George Calvert, 1st Baron Baltimore, originally intended that the colony be a haven for English Catholics, though for most of its history Maryland has had a majority of Protestants.[1]


The last new county formation in Maryland occurred when Garrett County was formed in 1872 from portions of Allegany County.[2] However, there have been numerous changes to county borders since that time, most recently when portions of the city of Takoma Park that had previously been part of Prince George's County were absorbed into Montgomery County in 1997.[3]

Outside of Baltimore (which is an independent city) the county is the default unit of local government. Under Maryland law, counties exercise powers reserved in most other states at the municipal or state levels, so there is little incentive for a community to incorporate. Many of the state's most populous and economically important communities, such as Bethesda, Silver Spring, Columbia, and Towson are unincorporated and receive their municipal services from the county. In fact, there are no incorporated municipalities at all in Baltimore County or Howard County. The county-equivalent is also the provider of public schools—school districts as a separate level of government do not exist in Maryland.

The City of Baltimore generally possesses the same powers and responsibilities as the counties within the state. It is an entity nearly surrounded by but separate from the County of Baltimore, which has its county seat in Towson.

The Federal Information Processing Standard (FIPS) code, which is used by the United States government to uniquely identify states and counties, is provided with each entry.[4] Maryland's code is 24, which when combined with any county code would be written as 24XXX. The FIPS code for each county links to census data for that county.

List of counties

FIPS code[5] County seat[2][6] Est.[2][6] Origin[2] Etymology[2] Flag
Population[7] Area[6][8] Map
Allegany County 001 Cumberland 1789 Formed from part of Washington County. From Lenape oolikhanna, which means "beautiful stream"
Flag of Allegany County, Maryland.png
Seal of Allegany County, Maryland.png
74,012 430 sq mi
(1,114 km2)
State map highlighting Allegany County
Anne Arundel County 003 Annapolis 1650 Formed from part of St. Mary's County. Anne Arundell was the maiden name of the wife of Cecil Calvert, 2nd Baron Baltimore. Between 1654 and 1658 it was known as Providence County by Puritan settlers
Flag of Anne Arundel County, Maryland.svg
Seal of Anne Arundel County, Maryland.svg
550,488 588 sq mi
(1,523 km2)
State map highlighting Anne Arundel County
Baltimore County 005 Towson 1659 Formed from unorganized territory Cecil Calvert, 2nd Baron Baltimore, first proprietor of the Maryland colony
Flag of Baltimore County, Maryland.svg
Seal of Baltimore County, Maryland.svg
817,455 682 sq mi
(1,766 km2)
State map highlighting Baltimore County
Baltimore City 510 Baltimore City 1851 Founded in 1729. Detached in 1851 from Baltimore County Cecil Calvert, 2nd Baron Baltimore, first proprietor of the Maryland colony
Flag of Baltimore, Maryland.svg
Seal of Baltimore, Maryland.png
621,342 92 sq mi
(238 km2)
State map highlighting Baltimore City
Calvert County 009 Prince Frederick 1654 Formed as Patuxent County from unorganized territory. Renamed Calvert County in 1658 The Calvert family; prior to 1658 it was called Patuxent County, after the Patuxent Indians, a branch of the Algonquians
Flag of Calvert County, Maryland.svg
Seal of Calvert County, Maryland.png
89,628 345 sq mi
(894 km2)
State map highlighting Calvert County
Caroline County 011 Denton 1773 From parts of Dorchester County and Queen Anne's County Lady Caroline Eden, daughter of Charles Calvert, 5th Baron Baltimore
Flag of Caroline County, Maryland.svg
Seal of Caroline County, Maryland.svg
32,718 326 sq mi
(844 km2)
State map highlighting Caroline County
Carroll County 013 Westminster 1837 From parts of Baltimore County and Frederick County Charles Carroll of Carrollton, a representative to the Continental Congress and signatory of the Declaration of Independence
Flag of Carroll County, Maryland.png
Seal of Carroll County, Maryland.png
167,217 452 sq mi
(1,171 km2)
State map highlighting Carroll County
Cecil County 015 Elkton 1672 From parts of Baltimore County and Kent County Cecil is an Anglicized form of the first name of Cecil Calvert, 2nd Baron Baltimore
Flag of Cecil County, Maryland.gif
Seal of Cecil County, Maryland.png
101,696 418 sq mi
(1,083 km2)
State map highlighting Cecil County
Charles County 017 La Plata 1658 From unorganized territory Charles Calvert, 3rd Baron Baltimore, second proprietor of the Maryland colony
Flag of Charles County, Maryland.png
Seal of Charles County, Maryland.svg
150,592 643 sq mi
(1,665 km2)
State map highlighting Charles County
Dorchester County 019 Cambridge 1668 From unorganized territory Dorchester in Dorset, England; the Earl of Dorset was a friend of the Calvert family
Flag of Dochester County, Maryland.png
Seal of Dorchester County, Maryland.png
32,551 540 sq mi
(1,399 km2)
State map highlighting Dorchester County
Frederick County 021 Frederick 1748 From part of Prince George's County Frederick Calvert, 6th Baron Baltimore, final proprietor of the Maryland colony
Flag of Frederick County, Maryland.png
Seal of Frederick County, Maryland.png
239,582 667 sq mi
(1,728 km2)
State map highlighting Frederick County
Garrett County 023 Oakland 1872 From part of Allegany County John Work Garrett, president of the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad
Flag of Garrett County, Maryland.svg
Seal of Garrett County, Maryland.svg
29,854 656 sq mi
(1,699 km2)
State map highlighting Garrett County
Harford County 025 Bel Air 1773 From part of Baltimore County Henry Harford, illegitimate son of Frederick Calvert, 6th Baron Baltimore
Flag of Harford County, Maryland.png
Seal of Harford County, Maryland.svg
248,622 527 sq mi
(1,365 km2)
State map highlighting Harford County
Howard County 027 Ellicott City 1851 From parts of Anne Arundel County and Baltimore County John Eager Howard, an American Revolutionary War officer and governor of Maryland
Flag of Howard County, Maryland.svg
Seal of Howard County, Maryland.png
299,430 254 sq mi
(658 km2)
State map highlighting Howard County
Kent County 029 Chestertown 1642 From unorganized territory The English county of Kent
Flag of Kent County, Maryland.gif
Seal of Kent County, Maryland.gif
20,191 414 sq mi
(1,072 km2)
State map highlighting Kent County
Montgomery County 031 Rockville 1776 From part of Frederick County Richard Montgomery, an American Revolutionary War general
Flag of Montgomery County, Maryland.svg
Seal of Montgomery County, Maryland.svg
1,004,709 507 sq mi
(1,313 km2)
State map highlighting Montgomery County
Prince George's County 033 Upper Marlboro 1696 From parts of Calvert County and Charles County Prince George of Denmark, the husband of Queen Anne of Great Britain
Flag of Prince George's County, Maryland.svg
Seal of Prince George's County, Maryland.svg
881,138 498 sq mi
(1,290 km2)
State map highlighting Prince George's County
Queen Anne's County 035 Centreville 1706 From parts of Talbot County Anne, Queen of Great Britain
Flag of Queen Anne's County, Maryland.gif
Seal of Queen Anne's County, Maryland.png
48,595 510 sq mi
(1,321 km2)
State map highlighting Queen Anne's County
Somerset County 039 Princess Anne 1666 From unorganized territory. Mary, Lady Somerset, sister-in-law of Cecil Calvert, 2nd Baron Baltimore
Flag of Somerset County, Maryland.svg
Seal of Somerset County, Maryland.png
26,253 611 sq mi
(1,582 km2)
State map highlighting Somerset County
St. Mary's County 037 Leonardtown 1637 From unorganized territory. Was named Potomac County between 1654 and 1658. The Virgin Mary, first county named in a colony intended to be a haven for Catholics
Flag of St. Mary's County, Maryland.png
Seal of St. Mary's County, Maryland.png
108,987 611 sq mi
(1,582 km2)
State map highlighting St. Mary's County
Talbot County 041 Easton 1662 From part of Kent County Grace, Lady Talbot, sister of Cecil Calvert, 2nd Baron Baltimore
Flag of Talbot County, Maryland.svg
Seal of Talbot County, Maryland.png
38,098 477 sq mi
(1,235 km2)
State map highlighting Talbot County
Washington County 043 Hagerstown 1776 From part of Frederick County George Washington, first President of the United States
Flag of Washington County, Maryland.svg
Link to image 149,180 468 sq mi
(1,212 km2)
State map highlighting Washington County
Wicomico County 045 Salisbury 1867 From parts of Somerset County and Worcester County The Wicomico River; in Lenape, wicko mekee indicated "a place where houses are built," possibly in reference to a settlement
Flag of Wicomico County, Maryland.gif
Seal of Wicomico County, Maryland.png
100,647 400 sq mi
(1,036 km2)
State map highlighting Wicomico County
Worcester County 047 Snow Hill 1742 From part of Somerset County Mary Arundell, the wife of Sir John Somerset, son of Henry Somerset, 1st Marquess of Worcester, and sister of Anne Arundell, the wife of Cecil Calvert, 2nd Baron Baltimore
Flag of Worcester County, Maryland.svg
Seal of Worcester County, Maryland.png
51,578 695 sq mi
(1,800 km2)
State map highlighting Worcester County

Defunct counties

County Years of existence Etymology
Old Charles County 1650–1654 King Charles I of England
Durham County 1669–1672 The English County Durham
Old Worcester County 1672–1685 Mary Arundell, the wife of Sir John Somerset, son of the 1st Marquess of Worcester,
and sister of Anne Arundell, wife of Cecil Calvert, 2nd Baron Baltimore

See also


  1. ^ Brugger, Robert J. (1988). Maryland: A Middle Temperament, 1634–1980. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins Press. ISBN 0-8018-3399-X.
  2. ^ a b c d e "Counties". Maryland Manual Online. Retrieved 2007-06-24.
  3. ^ Brown, Deneen (June 28, 1997). "As Unification Nears, Takoma Park Residents Still a Divided People". The Washington Post. pp. A1. Retrieved 2007-06-24.
  4. ^ "FIPS Publish 6-4". National Institute of Standards and Technology. Archived from the original on 2013-09-29. Retrieved 2007-04-11.
  5. ^ "EPA County FIPS Code Listing". Archived from the original on 2004-09-28. Retrieved 2008-02-23.
  6. ^ a b c National Association of Counties. "NACo - Find a county". Archived from the original on October 25, 2007. Retrieved 2008-04-30.
  7. ^ "U.S. Census website". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2012-08-15.
  8. ^ "Maryland QuickFacts". U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved 2007-06-22.

This page was last edited on 25 October 2020, at 00:40
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