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A Declaration of The Lord Baltemore's Plantation in Mary-land
Volume 550, Page 7   View pdf image (33K)
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THE CHARTER OF MARYLAND

by Lois Green Carr, Historian,
St. Mary's City Commission

Edward C. Papenfuse, Archivist of
the State of Maryland


   ON JUNE 20, 1632, Charles I, King of England,
Scotland, and Ireland, gave his blessing to the
founding of a new colony in America to be called
Maryland in honor of his Queen. He did so by means of
a grant, called a charter, to Cecil Calvert, second Lord
Baltimore. By virtue of this charter, Cecil Calvert
became the sole proprietor or owner of a vast tract of
land to the north of Virginia on the Chesapeake Bay,
the limits of which were only vaguely defined. The land
was Calvert's to sell and govern if he could translate the
formal clauses of a legal document into a successful col-
ony.

   The charter of Maryland proved to be a firm founda-
tion upon which democratic government and religious
toleration grew. The charter supplied the framework for
a social experiment that has left its mark on our present-
day society in the separation of church and state. It
guided a successful effort to colonize a wilderness and
establish there a refuge for English Catholics. Under the
protection of the charter a struggling settlement of im-
migrants became a prosperous province of Americans.
In 1776, when the State of Maryland joined the new
"United States in Congress Assembled," it did so with a
written constitution that could easily trace it origins to
Lord Baltimore's charter.

                      [vii]


 

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A Declaration of The Lord Baltemore's Plantation in Mary-land
Volume 550, Page 7   View pdf image (33K)
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