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County Formation in Western Maryland, 1637-1997
"Western" is defined as west of Chesapeake Bay and Cecil Co. (i.e., mainland Maryland)
 
YEAR CHANGE:  when a county reaches its 1997 form, its name is highlighted in red.
1637 Formation of St. Marys Co., the first and only county in MD until 1642
1642 Kent Co. formed from St. Marys Co.
1650 Anne Arundel and "old" Charles Cos. formed from St. Marys Co.
1654 Patuxent Co. formed from all of "old" Charles Co. and part of St. Marys Co.
Name of Anne Arundel Co. changed to Providence Co.
Name of St. Marys Co. changed to Potomac Co. 
At this point, Anne Arundel, St. Marys, and "old" Charles Cos. have ceased to exist
1658 "new" Charles Co. formed from part of Potomac Co. 
Name of Patuxent Co. changed to Calvert Co. 
Name of Providence Co. changed back to Anne Arundel Co. 
Name of Potomac Co. changed back to St. Marys Co. 
At this point, Anne Arundel and St. Marys Cos. have been resurrected as they were before the name changes four years previous (though St. Marys Co. is smaller due to the formation of the new Charles Co.); however, the new Charles Co. is not the old one.   The "old" Charles Co. bordered on Chesapeake Bay, roughly equivalent to (though somewhat larger than) today's Calvert Co.  The "new" Charles Co. is west of the old one and borders with Virginia, in what was once part of the original St. Marys Co.
1659 Baltimore Co. formed mostly de novo, but in small part from Anne Arundel and Kent Cos.
1674 Cecil Co. formed from Baltimore Co.
1695 Prince Georges Co. formed mostly de novo, but in part from Charles and Calvert Cos.
1696 St. Marys Co. and Charles Co. gained from Calvert Co.
1698 Anne Arundel Co. and Baltimore Co. exchange land
1727 Anne Arundel Co. gained from Baltimore Co.
1748 Frederick Co. formed mostly de novo, but in part from Prince Georges Co.
Charles Co. gained from Prince Georges Co.
1750 Frederick Co. gained from Baltimore Co.
1773 Harford Co. formed from Baltimore Co.
1776 Washington and Montgomery Cos. formed from Frederick Co.
1789 Allegany Co. formed from Washington Co.
1791 District of Columbia formed from Montgomery and Prince Georges Cos.
1824 Calvert Co. gained from Anne Arundel Co.
1837 Carroll Co. formed from Frederick Co. and Baltimore Co.
1851 Howard Co. formed from Anne Arundel Co.
Baltimore City becomes independent from Baltimore Co.
1872 Garrett Co. formed from Allegany Co.
1888 Baltimore City gained from Baltimore Co.
1918 Baltimore City gained from Baltimore Co.
1997 Montgomery Co. gained (very slightly) from Prince Georges Co.
   
Source:  AniMapPlus:  County Boundary Historical Atlas. Gold Bug Software, Alamo, CA.
 
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