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10 Fast Facts About Maryland:
1/ Maryland has specific guidelines laid down by its legislature as to exactly how the flagpole that holds the state flag should look, and is the only state (so far) that has done this. In 1945, the Maryland General Assembly also made a gold cross bottony the official state ornament for any flagpole carrying the state flag.
2/ The state flag of Maryland (see below) is one of the most distinctive of any of the states and is based on English Heraldry. It was adopted in 1904 and shows the coat of Arms of Baron Baltimore. The Maryland colony was founded by Cecilius Calvert, 2nd Baron Baltimore, hence the use of his coat of arms in the flag. The arms of the Calvert and Crossland families (the Crossland family was the family of Baltimore's mother) are displayed in diagonally opposing quadrants of the flag; whilst the alternating yellow and black are from Baron Calvert's family shield.
3/ The elevation on Backbone Mountain at Hoye Crest is 3,360 feet which is the highest in all of Maryland.
4/ Here are some average low and high temperatures in Fahrenheit for some different Maryland cities in August:
5/ Maryland is one of the most environmentally friendly states in the country. In 2007, Forbes.com rated Maryland as the fifth "Greenest" state in the country behind three of the Pacific States and Vermont. In fact, Maryland has a ranking that places in the bottom 25% of all the states in terms of energy consumption, and it has managed to produce less toxic waste per capita than all but six other states in 2005.
6/ Established as the Baltimore College of Dental Surgery in 1840, the University of Maryland School of Dentistry was the world's first dental college. Some early dental instruments from those times can now be viewed at the Dr. Samuel D. Harris National Museum of Dentistry which is also located in Baltimore.
7/ The official state reptile of Maryland is the Diamondback Terrapin, the official state flower is the Black-Eyed Susan, and the official state butterfly is the Baltimore Checkerspot.
8/ America's national anthem was written by Francis Scott Key a Maryland lawyer. It is thought that it was actually written on the 14th Septemebr 1814, whilst Baltimore Harbor was being bombarded to attack Fort McHenry.
9/ The Bollman Truss Railroad Bridge in Savage is made of both cast iron and wrought iron. It is the only open railroad bridge of its type anywhere in the world
10/ The Battle of Antietam (also known as the Battle of Sharpsburg, particularly in the South), fought on September 17, 1862, near Sharpsburg, Maryland, and Antietam Creek, as part of the Maryland Campaign, was the first major battle in the American Civil War to take place on Union soil. It was the bloodiest single-day battle in American history, with about 23,000 casualties.