Maryland Lore

Shepherd Park/Juanita E. Thornton LibraryStaff Picks

Maryland Lore

Like the District, Maryland has a rich, fascinating history and plenty of regional lore. Many important events in American history occurred in the Old Free State. A number of prominent men and women lived and worked in Maryland, making their mark in history. Below are a selection of titles worth reading about Maryland.

Your Maryland by Ric Cottom
Discover little-known stories about Maryland from colonial times to the mid-20th century. The author wrote each of these short stories of regional lore in an informative and lively way. Among the stories you'll read include pirates, witches, battles, African Americans, daring adventurers, cultural events and more. I really enjoyed reading this book and learning more about Maryland state history.

Baltimore Prohibition by Michael T. Walsh
Prohibition was the law of the land between the 1920s to 1930s, but it was disregarded and protested in Maryland. Two prominent Baltimore City hotels displayed their speakeasies in plain sight and rum running was frequent along the Chesapeake Bay. The author examines how prohibition affected Maryland and its historical significance today. Also, Prohibition in Washington, D.C. by Garrett Peck is cited in the book, showing the regional impact of prohibition.

The Patapsco by Paul J. Travers
Sail down the Patapsco River from central Maryland to Baltimore City. In this book, the author traces the river's history from the various Native American tribes who lived along the river to the present day as well as its natural geography. The Patapsco has been a vital natural resource and a destructive force at times. The author researched this book over several years and it's worth reading.

Pirates of Maryland by Mark P. Donnelly and Daniel Diehl
During the 18th century, piracy was common in the Chesapeake Bay and on the high seas. The practice was illegal and dangerous. It could be difficult to catch those who were involved with it. In this book, meet the pirates who operated in the Chesapeake Bay area, terrifying residents and hiding their treasures. A glossary follows at the end of the text.

Bluegrass in Baltimore by Tim Newby
Between the 1940s to 1950s, Baltimore attracted a number of bluegrass musicians from the Appalachia. The author, who's active in the Baltimore live music community, chronicles the story of how bluegrass came to the city and its legendary musicians. He interviewed the musicians who played during that time and those who knew them. The men and women who played bluegrass faced successes and challenges on and off the stage. In later years, bluegrass music would come to thrive here in the District.

Bonus title: Discover Maryland's story in the seminal book Maryland, A Middle Temperament by Robert Brugger.