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Old 09-20-2009, 11:26 AM
 
1,030 posts, read 3,080,054 times
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In fairness to all the residents of Maryland, this post cannot be concluded as stated by the OP. The question is

"Do Maryland residents consider themselves as "Southerners?"

The ones who consider themselves as southerners are correct.

The ones who don't consider themselves as such are correct as well.

If the question was "Do Maryland residents consider themselves as "Black," "Gay," "Catholic," "Anemic?'"
people would obviously conclude that, do to the fact that there are multiple residents, there will be multiple answers.

The consideration is in the eye of the beholder. The Census says the state is south, AAA, school accreditation system, bla bla bla says it's north.

Can't win this one, because consideration depends on the parties executing the consideration. If the question was "Does the Census consider Maryland Southern?" The answer is yes. If the answer is do the residents consider themselves southern, the answer is yes, and no, and kinda, and sorta, etc.. no black or white issue here. Both you guys are right, and nobody is wrong, because it is an opinion. There is no southern gene in the body to detect and determine.

Northernness and Southernness are abstract concepts of culture. It's an opinion of a people based on their customs and mannerisms.

North and South, speaking spatially, can be more of a black or white issue, where if you were to draw a line between Key West and the top of Maine, Maryland would fall in the Northern Half, but that's not what people are talking about. People are talking about a cultural label, which is abstract, and perpetually open to debate.


Good Luck Guys!!

Last edited by Joe84323; 09-20-2009 at 11:34 AM..

 
Old 09-20-2009, 09:52 PM
 
518 posts, read 1,325,016 times
Reputation: 210
Quote:
Originally Posted by cpterp View Post
I was talking about the Civil War (and prior) history and the state song, which seems to be sole argument (apart from cultural influences in some parts of the state) to call Maryland unequivocally Southern.
I see your point, but I respectfully have to disagree: Culturally and historically, not just Southern MD and the Tidewater areas of the state, but Maryland as a whole developed according to uniquely Southern patterns of development. The scarcity of incorporated areas (relative to other states) is common throughout the South, where counties are the primary administrative divisions. In the northeast (PA, NJ and north), counties are divided into towns, boroughs, and townships. In the Antebellum South Maryland and Virginia were barely indistinguishable, in terms of culture, political ideology, history, patterns of development,

For some historical background (for the curious): Recall that in 4th Grade Virginia history many of us learned that Maryland and Virginia, and the other colonies of the Old South, especially in the Coastal Plain and Piedmont regions, were divided into large plantations, and courthouses were often located along rural roads surrounded by fields of tobacco. A courthouse by itself did not necessitate any kind of urban growth. There were a few towns and cities that developed as regional centers for commerce, transportation, and government, but that was it. Baltimore and New Orleans were the largest cities in the antebellum South.



Quote:
Originally Posted by cpterp View Post
There are many other reasons other than the ones I posted that ties Baltimore to the North, but very few (if any) that ties Balt. to the South. Can you really honestly say that Baltimore resembles Richmond (of all cities), Atlanta, or Charlotte more than Philadelphia or Newark? DC is also widely considered part of the Northeast, and is the start of the Bos-Was megapolis. Even historically, going back to the Civil War, DC differed from cities just across in Virginia significantly.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe84323 View Post
In fairness to all the residents of Maryland, this post cannot be concluded as stated by the OP. The question is

"Do Maryland residents consider themselves as "Southerners?"

The ones who consider themselves as southerners are correct.

The ones who don't consider themselves as such are correct as well.
a
 
Old 09-21-2009, 04:32 AM
 
518 posts, read 1,325,016 times
Reputation: 210
Default Good points from everyone, but I'll try to clear up some misconceptions

(Please ignore previous incomplete post... don't know how that happened)

Quote:
Originally Posted by cpterp View Post
I was talking about the Civil War (and prior) history and the state song, which seems to be sole argument (apart from cultural influences in some parts of the state) to call Maryland unequivocally Southern.
OK, so you're asking whether Maryland is unequivocally Southern in more recent years and/or TODAY? I dig. I'd say it is according to certain criteria, and according to other criteria, no. But in terms of antebellum settlement patterns and its EFFECTS on urban development TODAY... absolutley. While this might not be what you're after, here's an historical analysis you or others might find interesting:

Culturally and historically, not just Southern Maryland and the Tidewater areas of the state, but Maryland as a whole developed according to uniquely Southern patterns of development. The scarcity of incorporated areas (relative to other states) is common throughout the South, where counties are the primary administrative divisions. In the northeast (PA, NJ and north), counties are divided into towns, boroughs, and townships. Plantation based agriculture produced the dispersed settlement patterns of the South: Important civic and religious structures like courthouses and churches were often located by themselves adjacent to tobacco (or other) fields, and isolated from any social centers, which were few and far between. A courthouse by itself did not necessitate any kind of urban growth. There were a few towns and cities that developed as regional centers for commerce, transportation, and government, but that was it. Baltimore and New Orleans were the largest cities in the antebellum South. Indeed, Maryland, along with Virginia and North Carolina set the tone for the rest of the South as an agrarian society developed: that of plantations in the Tidewater and Peidmont, and the smaller farmsteads of parts of the Piedmont and Appalachia. ---->

The settlement patterns of the Antebellum South explain to some extent why the suburban sprawl of Southern cities and towns is particularly bad (this argument resulted from much undergraduate research and fieldwork): Most post WWII suburban growth in the South is characterized by the contemporary "leapfrog" development patterns of isolated residential communities and commercial developments. Unlike the North, the South for the most part lacked the identifiable towns and boroughs of the North and thus a de facto growth control mechanism. (The suburban sprawl of Richmond, DC, Baltimore, Atlanta, etc. is very similar for this reason.)

I could provide a detailed description of Maryland after the Civil War, and the degree to which I think it remained culturally Southern based other historical analyses (As an undergraduate student I studied Southern history),... but perhaps my brief description of Baltimore below will be sufficient to provide some insight (and not so time consuming for me).

Quote:
Originally Posted by cpterp View Post
There are many other reasons other than the ones I posted that ties Baltimore to the North, but very few (if any) that ties Balt. to the South. Can you really honestly say that Baltimore resembles Richmond (of all cities), Atlanta, or Charlotte more than Philadelphia or Newark? DC is also widely considered part of the Northeast, and is the start of the Bos-Was megapolis. Even historically, going back to the Civil War, DC differed from cities just across in Virginia significantly.
I both agree and disagree with you here; and I'll provide some historical background:

For a good description of Baltimore (It begins "Long considered a Southern town...):
Baltimore History

In terms of its history and culture Baltimore is a Southern city, but saying that does not deny that it was influenced in many ways by it's proximity to the North and Philadelphia. Baltimore, however, was one of the South's leading ports and so it's economy was invariably tied to the economy of the South. The city did struggle for a period after the Civil War, but rebounded with an influx of European immigrants and immigrants from the rural "Upper South" that settled the mill towns like Hampden and other areas of the city with growing industries (not unlike Philadelphia one could argue). Short of going into a lengthy analysis of the city and its culture here are a few points that touch on various themes:

Jim Crow segregation in Baltimore followed the pattern of other Southern cities, and the struggle for civil rights here was a Southern one. Here's one article titled "Dismantling Jim Crow Up South:"
Dismantling Jim Crow Up South: Racial Desegregation In Baltimore, 1935-1955 (http://www.allacademic.com/meta/p_mla_apa_research_citation/1/1/6/5/7/p116578_index.html - broken link)

The social scene of "high society types" in Baltimore was not unlike other Southern cities. Baltimore and nearby Washington, DC hosted many debutante balls and cotillions. Baltimore's Southern Hotel (recently demolished) was the scene for many of these events. I know that Washington, DC still hosts a few prominent ones.

For many years Johns Hopkins was the university of choice for the Southern elite and was viewed as one of the South's leading institutions of higher learning.

Baltimore's Southern roots do in fact continue to define its culture today. Working/middle-class neighborhoods like Hampden and Woodbury are still home to significant multi-generational, conservative, Protestant, and culturally Southern communities... Southern, but also uniquely Baltimorean, in terms of speech, mannerisms, and customs. Guilford, a wealthy suburban neighborhood in the city, and other suburbs are still home to some well heeled "first families of Maryland." A fairly recent Barry Levinson Film provided a pretty good depiction of just this type of family, and their "refined" Southern accent. Baltimore might resemble the urban and industrial "grit" of some Northern cities, but many of the city's residents and its neighborhoods prove that looks can be deceiving.

Quite a few of Baltimore's grand rowhouses and brownstones that you mentioned in a previous post were actually built by Confederate veterans (officers et al.), who settled in Bolton Hill giving the neighborhood distinctly Southern character. Baltimore's confederate Soldiers and Sailors Monument is in fact nearby, set within the median of Mt. Royal Ave. Architecturally, one might argue that the rowhouses of Baltimore more closely resemble those of Philadelphia, as the late 19th century rowhouses of DC and Richmond were mostly "Victorian." (But there are a number of Victorian "turrets" in Baltimore also.) Notably, DC, Richmond, and Baltimore are the only Southern cities that heavily invested in rowhouse construction.
boltonhill.org > Neighborhood

Richmond and Baltimore are known for their grand tree-lined streets with monuments and parks--there are indeed quite a few similarities in terms of urban typologies. While Baltimore has nothing quite as grand as Monument Avenue in Richmond, Baltimore does have significant, but more modest, symbolic, parklike "avenues" framed by rowhouses.

One of the most famous monuments in Baltimore is the Lee-Jackson double equestrian statue in Wyman Park. The birthday of Robert E. Lee is marked by an annual celebration, at the statue. In Richmond, there is a ceremony at Hollywood Cemetary, but I'm unsure if one takes place at the Lee statue.

BTW, Newark looks nothing like Baltimore. I've been to Newark and its suburbs like South Orange many times, and I fail to find a strong connection there.

___
Province of Maryland - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
"Like its larger neighbor, Virginia, Maryland developed into a plantation colony by the 18th century... Baltimore was the second-most important port in the eighteenth-century South, after Charleston, South Carolina." --excerpt from Wikipedia, "Province of Maryland" section
___

Washington, DC is also historically a Southern city (notwithstanding important ties to the North), and I could provide a lengthy description of its history, culture, etc... but I believe that you are more interested in whether or not it is perceived to be Southern today, a topic for endless debate as demonstrated by the NPR discussion on that topic. (Maybe I'll post my thoughts on that later or send you a PM.) I do not disagree with you when you say that Washington, DC and Baltimore are part of a Northeast Megalopolis. And as you have proven, Maryland today shares many demographic, and other other analytical points of reference with Northern states. But the cities and regions that make up this region from Hampton Roads or DC to Boston are still culturally distinct to varying degrees, and I don't think that should be overlooked. I reckon that you do not see the distinctively Southern characteristics of Baltimore or DC (or Maryland) today, and many may not, but there are those who do, and that is why questions like the one the OP posted are not uncommon.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Joe84323 View Post
In fairness to all the residents of Maryland, this post cannot be concluded as stated by the OP. The question is

"Do Maryland residents consider themselves as "Southerners?"
The ones who consider themselves as southerners are correct.
The ones who don't consider themselves as such are correct as well.
Exactly!
So here are my three concluding points:

-->In terms of history Maryland IS Southern, without a doubt. A portrait the Old South would be incomplete without a description of Maryland .

-->The question that is debatable is whether or not Maryland is Southern today?? (And this question is a logical extension of the OP's question). That debate could go on forever, and no one will ever agree to what degree it is or isn't Southern. I do see cterp's and others' frustration with this!

-->This last point is most relevant to the OP's original question, which asked if Marylanders consider themselves as Southerners. I will quote joe84323 here "The ones who consider themselves as southerners are correct. The ones who don't consider themselves as such are correct as well." --yes, and thank you!!

Last edited by irvine; 09-21-2009 at 04:52 AM..
 
Old 09-21-2009, 08:01 AM
 
542 posts, read 1,331,935 times
Reputation: 354
Quote:
Originally Posted by irvine View Post
The cities and regions that make up this region from Hampton Roads or DC to Boston are still culturally distinct to varying degrees, and I don't think that should be overlooked.
Great post, but I especially agree with this comment. Some people want to lump the entire BosWash corridor together as if it's one cohesive metro when that couldn't be anything further from the truth. As you pointed out, the cities along the corridor still remain culturally distinct to some degree, and though Baltimore shares similarities with Philadelphia, it along with DC are different from the cities further Northeast. I've been to NYC & Philadelphia, and after my visits, to me Baltimore didn't seem so solidly Northeastern anymore.

And though it hasn't officially happened yet, I think it's very possible that the Richmond & Hampton Roads areas will grow into the BosWash corridor, so it'll become more of a crescent shape.
 
Old 09-21-2009, 08:09 AM
 
Location: Cumberland
5,303 posts, read 8,566,988 times
Reputation: 3762
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bobilee View Post
Actually, West Virginia was quite different from Maryland and the other border states in terms of the Civil War.
Russell Weigley on West Virginia (West Virginia - The Other History)
It was the only one that did not give a majority of troops to the Union, according to recent research. People are unaware of the large numbers of PA and OH residents who made up WV Union regiments, well over one-quarter.
There has been another Southern study from the UNC just published in Southeastern Geographer. Unfortunately the article itself is not available online, I could only find a blog that wrote about it. You might be able to access the article through your local library.
Outlying Islands of Shrinking Dixie « Far Outliers
Great link. I did a quick review of Allegany/Garrett County phonebook and found the following regional designations in business and government agency names. I didn't separate out business from government/quasi-government listing which accounts for many of the "Allegany" and "Maryland" listings. Most relevant to me is that "Northern" and "Southern" are less popular than "Appalachian" and "Allegheny." This indicates to me that Appalachia or Allegheny (mountains) is the best regional fit for Western Maryland. Also the fact that "Western Maryland" nearly doubles up "Maryland" is indicate of strong regionalism.

Allegany - 91
Western Maryland - 61
America - 45
Maryland - 32
Appalachian - 16
Allegheny (the spelling for the mountain range) - 11
Southern - 7
Northern - 0
Dixie - 0
 
Old 09-21-2009, 08:18 AM
 
Location: btw Bmore and DC but in the Bmore Metro Stat Area
672 posts, read 1,883,264 times
Reputation: 143
does anyone have results from the latest unc southern study survey or whatever it's called. I mean that really is the best way to answer the original question assuming it's recent enough
 
Old 09-21-2009, 09:37 AM
 
Location: N/A
1,359 posts, read 3,370,160 times
Reputation: 569
Quote:
Originally Posted by irvine View Post
Exactly!
So here are my three concluding points:

-->In terms of history Maryland IS Southern, without a doubt. A portrait the Old South would be incomplete without a description of Maryland .

-->The question that is debatable is whether or not Maryland is Southern today?? (And this question is a logical extension of the OP's question). That debate could go on forever, and no one will ever agree to what degree it is or isn't Southern. I do see cterp's and others' frustration with this!

-->This last point is most relevant to the OP's original question, which asked if Marylanders consider themselves as Southerners. I will quote joe84323 here "The ones who consider themselves as southerners are correct. The ones who don't consider themselves as such are correct as well." --yes, and thank you!!
Wow, excellent post. I really appreciate the thorough history lesson. This is the first time I'm hearing a lot of this. That's undoubtedly the best argument for Maryland being a Southern state that I've heard. This is why, in my opinion, (good-natured) debate is a good thing since you acquire volumes of knowledge and expose yourself to different viewpoints.

I agree, that Maryland is a Southern state historically. I've also heard that one of the main many Baltimore residents opposed the Union was because it's economy was strongly tied to the plantation economy of the South. However, not to negate anything you said, but there are still some other differences that I think differentiate Baltimore from Southern cities (today anyway):

Quote:
Originally Posted by irvine View Post
Baltimore might resemble the urban and industrial "grit" of some Northern cities...
In addition to the rowhomes you discussed, the Eurpoean migrants, it's close ties to Philadelphia, and the accent, this is another thing that to me gives Baltimore that "Northern feel." When I was talking about the similarities between B'more and Newark, I was thinking how similar it was driving through both cities on I-95/the NJ Tkpke. I mean that instantly recognizable "Baltimore" smokestack, the neon "Domino's Sugar" sign, and the port remind a lot of driving through Newark and seeing the cranes at port, the petroleum tanks (?), and other signs of industry. I'll take your word that the cities themselves though are probably different.

Baltimore and DC may have ties to Richmond but to me Richmond seems even more Southern than some parts of Hampton Roads or even Charlotte. To me it is the quintessential "Southern city." Things like Monument Ave, and the Museum of the Confederacy stick out like sore thumbs.

Another thing is, unlike many Southern cities/states that lost blacks during the Great South->North Migration Maryland/Baltimore gained. I'm also not sure about the suburban sprawl in both the DC and Baltimore areas being the same as in the South at large. DC is immediately surrounded by densely populated urban areas (Arlington, Alexandria, Chevy Chase, Bethesda, and Silver Spring) a feature I'm pretty sure isn't too common in the South (but then again I haven't been to every Southern city), although the B'more suburbs are more sprawling, but it doesn't seem to be all that different than in New Jersey or SE Pennsylvania.

This brings me to another very important point: density. (This is an argument I used for Maryland being Northeastern) A constant among nearly all Southern cities is their relatively low densities. Take a look at the following pop. densities (per mi.2) for select Southern and Northern cities plus DC and B'more.

DC- 9,639.0
Baltimore- 7,889.3

South:
Charlotte-2,515.7
Richmond-3,211.1
Atlanta-4,018
New Orleans-2,518
Charleston-996.5
Norfolk-4,362.6

Northeast:
Philadelphia-10,721.4
New Haven-6,601.9
Newark-11,400
Hartford-7,025.5
Boston-12,561
Wilmington-6,698.1 (I know DE is also debatable for being NE, but I'll leave it anyway)

These are very stark contrasts, and the Southern cities I listed have the highest population densities in the region yet not one is greater than any of the NE cities I've listed (or DC or Balt.). Baltimore's population density should would be way higher if the city didn't suffer from it's unique problem of losing residents at a very high pace. In 1990 the pop. density was 9,109. This is in contrast to most of those Southern cities which have been gaining residents at a very rapid rate, particularly Charlotte and Atlanta. Densities below 2,000/sq. mi. are typical for smaller or mid-sized cities that I didn't list.

This brings me to yet another point: transportation. Most Southern cities have very poor transit options (you must own a car). DC has one of the best and busiest, and Baltimore has a pretty good system (modeled on the New York MTA and NJ Transit) as well. While most cities have local bus service, rail is very unpopular in the South.

Below DC there are only two heavy rail/rapid transit (i.e. subway) transit systems: MARTA in Atlanta, and Miami Metrorail (which is a twin of the Baltimore system). As Miami isn't "Southern" in the traditional sense, I think it would be fair to say that Atlanta's is the only Southern rapid transit system. It's a similar thing with commuter rail (MARC, VRE)--after DC the only system south is in South Florida. Charlotte and the Virginia Tidewater do have (or will have in the latter case) light rail systems, as well as Houston and St. Louis (if you can count those cities as Southern). Granted, the systems in DC and Baltimore aren't centuries old like the ones in New York, Boston, and Philadelphia (Maryland's commuter rail system is though), but that doesn't diminish their importance.

I like your three closing points, and agree with all of them, even though I maintain Maryland is more Northeastern than it is Southern today. I'm not sure about "ever" in your second point though. Twenty years from now Maryland's transformation may be complete and no one may be having this discussion. Then again, as I've been reminded numerous times on this thread, history never goes away...
 
Old 09-21-2009, 10:40 AM
 
Location: N/A
1,359 posts, read 3,370,160 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vivo View Post
does anyone have results from the latest unc southern study survey or whatever it's called. I mean that really is the best way to answer the original question assuming it's recent enough
Yep, I found it along with some other very interesting things in my search. Here is a summary:
UNC-CH surveys reveal where the ‘real’ South lies

"Now, the Southern Focus Poll, conducted by the Institute for Research in Social Science at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, provides strong support for including such states as Texas, Kentucky and Oklahoma in the South. On the other hand, West Virginia, Maryland, Missouri, Delaware and the District of Columbia don’t belong anymore, if they ever did...Fourteen polls, surveying a total of more than 17,000 people between 1992 and 1999 show, for example, that only 7 percent of D.C. residents responding say that they live in the South.
Only 14 percent of Delaware residents think they live in the region, followed by Missourians with 23 percent, Marylanders with 40 percent and West Virginians with 45 percent."

Needless to say I strongly agree with the polls, and not just about Maryland. I would still say Texas has some SW influence. In addition I found an article from the Washington Post and an editorial from the Baltimore Sun, both of which more or less back up mine and others arguments about Maryland being located in the NE, but also acknowledes points that Irvine, westsideboy, and others made. It sucks that I didn't find these long ago:

Maryland Wants to Switch from 'South' to 'East' - Maryland Politics - News and notes from the Maryland political scene.

Maryland politics, economy just aren't Southern anymore -- baltimoresun.com

Last edited by cpterp; 09-21-2009 at 10:59 AM..
 
Old 09-21-2009, 12:26 PM
 
Location: btw Bmore and DC but in the Bmore Metro Stat Area
672 posts, read 1,883,264 times
Reputation: 143
also from the unc link

"Clearly some parts of Texas aren’t Southern – whatever you mean by that -- and some parts of Maryland are," Reed said. "But sometimes you need to say what ‘the Southern states’ are, and this kind of information can help you decide. Our next step is to look inside individual states like Texas, break the data down by county, and say, for example, where between Beaumont and El Paso people stop telling you that you’re in the South."
 
Old 09-21-2009, 04:03 PM
 
542 posts, read 1,331,935 times
Reputation: 354
Ahh, that "study". I just want to say that I disagree with it. Too many people throw it out there like it's gospel, when nothing is ever said about the methods used in which to present & gather information from the sample population, how big the sample population was, or how the data is collected & formed by those conducting the experiment. What's lends it even less credibility, other than stating this "real South" mantra, is that the 40% of those Marylanders during a 7 year period who feel that they live in the South's opinions are discredited, more or less. This isn't something like 7 or 11 percent, but 40. I find that considerable enough to account for something, but at one point they say some parts of Maryland are Southern, and at another point they deduce that Maryland "no longer counts, if it ever did". However, if you want a general idea of where the South lies, I think that the states mentioned would be a pretty accurate description.
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