Please email or share this article!

Maryland State History Facts

Like the Native American tribes found in Maine, the tribes in Maryland also spoke the Algonquian language.

Seal Of Maryland

Before European explorers and settlers came to the area, the tribes that called the area home were the Nanticoke, the Delaware, and the Piscataway peoples.

Lenape Languages

The First Europeans Arrive

In 1534, da Verrazzano explored the area now known as Maryland. Later in 1608, John Smith mapped the coastline of Maryland.

English fur traders were the first Europeans to establish a settlement.

Related: Maryland State Facts

Capt John Smith

A Calvinist Colony

By 1634, many English settlers arrived and established a colony. They called it St. Mary’s.

It was established by George Calvert and later Leonard Calvert as a Calvinist or Puritan colony, and was the capital of the area for decades.

Baron George Calvert By John Alfred Vinter

The Native American tribes were infected and died of smallpox brought by the settlers arriving from England.

As more and more settlers came, the natives were forced to move out of the area.

The Mason-Dixon Line

Mason Dixon Line Rail Trail

Catholic and Puritan settlers had many different ideas and there were many fights between them.

To settle the argument of religion and to stop the fighting, a boundary was marked out by two surveyors, Mason and Dixon.

They established a boundary between Pennsylvania and Maryland. It became known as the Mason-Dixon Line.

Mason Dixon Line

Declaring Independence

Thirteen British colonies in America went to war in 1775 against British troops to win their independence from Britain.

Maryland was one of these colonies. When the colonies won in 1783, the United States Constitution was written. Maryland officially became the 7th state of the United States in 1788.

It was one of the slave states that were admitted to the Union.

Flag Of Maryland

The Civil War

The Civil War erupted in 1861 after Abraham Lincoln became the president of the United States. One of the things he wanted to accomplish was to abolish slavery.

Related: US Presidents List

The southern states were slave states and opposed the northern Union states.

The southern states declared themselves a new country called the Confederate States of America.

Even though Maryland was a slave state, it aligned itself with the Unionists. However, the people of Maryland fought on both sides.

One of the worst battles was the Battle of Antietam in Maryland, where more than 22,000 soldiers were injured or killed.


Quiz Time!



How were the Native Americans in Maine and Maryland alike?

Who were George and Leonard Calvert?

What was the Mason-Dixon Line?

What was strange about Maryland joining the Unionists during the Civil War?

How was the population of Maryland divided during the Civil War?

Memorial Chapel At Umcp Front View Off Center


The Native Americans in Maine and Maryland spoke the Algonquian language.

George and Leonard Calvert were English Puritans who led settlers into the Maryland area to set up a Calvinist colony at St. Mary’s.

The Mason-Dixon Line was a boundary established by surveyors to mark the boundary between Pennsylvania and Maryland to end the fighting between Catholic and Puritan settlers.

Maryland joined the Unionists even though it was a slave state.

Some of the people in Maryland fought with the Unionists and some fought with the Confederates.

US State History