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Old 09-21-2009, 04:19 PM
 
518 posts, read 1,325,269 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cpterp View Post
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):
Without quoting your excellent, and long response, I'll try to address several of your points here:

1) You wrote that the density and the transport infrastructure of DC and Baltimore is more characteristically "northern" than "southern."

Thanks for posting the pop density data, and I'm assuming the densities you listed are limited to the cities' themselves and do not include the suburbs. I do have a few thoughts. Washington, DC and Baltimore despite it's high density compared to your sample of Southern cities, is still lower than the major Northeastern cities of your list like Philadelphia and Boston, which historically have more multi-family homes. Washington, DC has many apartments and rowhouses that surely contribute to its density, but roughly half of its neighborhoods resemble the pre-WW2, suburban, SFH neighborhood typologies of parts of Atlanta and Richmond, for example. Until at least the New Deal and the influx of many federal workers into the city, DC was viewed by many as just another fairly insignificant "Small Southern Town" despite its role as the federal capital. While Baltimore is mostly a city of rowhouses, which undoubtedly contributes to its high density, this is offset to some degree by the very suburban sections of the city like Roland Park, Guilford, Mt. Washington, et al.

But yes, the densities are far greater than Atlanta, Charlotte, Richmond, et al. DC and Baltimore form the Southern end of a Northeastern Megalopolis, and their densities will likely increase as well. I also foresee significant growth in the various Hampton Roads communities, and Richmond, regions that aspire to join this rapidly developing urban corridor, as light rail and other transportation infrastructure like high speed rail are developed.

The growth of DC's inner city neighborhoods like Columbia Heights and the inner suburbs like Arlington, Bethesda, et al. is relatively recent, and the new, high density developments of these neighborhoods can be described as TODs or Transit Oriented Developments. Cities like Atlanta are catching up and higher density TODs, as guided by Georgia Tech's excellent planning and architecture programs, have been developed there over the past decade. The planned Atlanta Beltline is one very interesting project that aims to improve the city's transportation infrastructure and spur denser development typologies. Further south (and west), Houston and Dallas both have excellent light rail systems that are creating vibrant TODs.
BeltLine - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

MARC and VRE are unfortunately only for commuters. They do not run on weekends or late at night. SEPTA, NJTransit, Metro North, the MBTA, Los Angeles' Metrolink, et al. all run more frequently and on weekends and cater to far more diverse transportation needs. Taking the VRE from Fredericksburg to DC to spend a Saturday at the museums is not possible. Rail in Baltimore and DC is just not as well integrated into the city's psyche.

Many of the old suburban lines were dismantled years ago as in other Southern cities, unlike the heavily used ones of the Northeastern cities which remained intact. Also, DC and Baltimore, like cities throughout the South, lacked the high concentration of suburban towns that surrounded Northern cities and the excellent rail network that connected the towns. Philadelphia had the Main Line towns, towns in New Jersey like Haddonfield, suburban towns in PA like Media, etc, etc. New York and Newark are surrounded by countless suburban towns like Maplewood and South Orange in New Jersey, the suburban towns in Queens and on Long Island, those of Westchester County like New Rochelle, Scarsdale, Rye, and Connecticut towns like Fairfield. Boston is similarly surrounded by many small suburban towns that have always had excellent transit connections to the city. Historically, Washington, DC and Baltimore pale in comparison, and this is because their suburbs were of the much lower densities common throughout the South.

2)
The Baltimore Accent is very unique, and it has characteristics of the Virginia Piedmont dialect, Southern Appalachian dialects, as well as several Midland dialects. Several variations are spoken within the city. The Baltimore "Accent" in Hampden is different from that spoken in Dundalk, for example. The Hampden accent is more "Southern-sounding" to me. But generally, the Baltimore accent sounds far more "southern" than "northern" or "midland" to me. Just listen to the people that call into radio shows on FM stations like 98 Rock. But to you the Baltimore accent is "northern sounding" so I suppose that for you the more "northern" traits of the accent are more pronounced?

3)
Sure, the black migration of the early 20th century greatly impacted Maryland and there was a net increase in blacks in the state--this migration was mostly to Baltimore and Washington, DC. But like the rural counties in other parts of the South, Maryland's rural counties also lost much of its black population to urban areas--nearby cities like Baltimore or cities further north like Philadelphia, New York, and Boston. Southern Maryland lost much of it's black population during the great migration. Only recently have blacks begun to move back to Southern MD, especially in areas closer to DC. Baltimore was a very segregated Southern city, but it also had an established and educated black population that dated to the antebellum period as well as growing industries with work opportunities, so it was appealing to rural blacks seeking a better life.

I hope you find that my points help to explain some of your observations, or complement them to some degree.

Last edited by irvine; 09-21-2009 at 04:31 PM..

 
Old 09-21-2009, 06:42 PM
 
Location: N/A
1,359 posts, read 3,370,962 times
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Wow, you really know you're history. Another great lesson . I do have a few things I'd like to add.

Quote:
Originally Posted by irvine View Post
Washington, DC and Baltimore despite it's high density compared to your sample of Southern cities, is still lower than the major Northeastern cities of your list like Philadelphia and Boston, which historically have more multi-family homes....
I understand completely about the history and layout of DC especially the sfh's, but I was under the impression that a large part of DC's slightly lower density than say Philadelphia had to do with the city's restriction of building height, which prevents really tall apartment towers and complexes from being built. Also, if Baltimore hadn't been hemorrhaging residents in droves for the past 50 years (from about 1 mil. residents to 600K), it would likely have a density in the teens.

Quote:
Originally Posted by irvine View Post
MARC and VRE are unfortunately only for commuters. They do not run on weekends or late at night.
This is true, but remember also that the MARC (as well as VRE) system is unique in that most people riding are federal govt. workers who don't work on the weekend, plus it serves smaller cities than in the NE (with the exception of Boston). That's the same reason until recently MARC ran limited schedules on minor federal holidays such as Columbus Day. However, the Penn Line which runs on Amtrak's Northeast Corridor between Baltimore and DC via BWI, is not strictly for commuters and runs frequent service (at least hourly off-peak) well into the night. Also weekend service was supposed to start last summer but the budget crisis prevented that.

Quote:
Originally Posted by irvine View Post
Many of the old suburban lines were dismantled years ago as in other Southern cities, unlike the heavily used ones of the Northeastern cities which remained intact...Boston is similarly surrounded by many small suburban towns that have always had excellent transit connections to the city.
This is also true, and something I noticed in Boston especially when I last visited is how there were a large number of commuter rail lines that fanned out of the city in nearly every direction. However, while this might be straying a little from the topic at hand, Maryland's rail history is a very rich one and probably more so than nearly every other Northeastern state.

From Tom Thumb (the first steam locomotive) to MARC's fastest-in-country 125mph commuter rail service on the NEC the state has been at the forefront of rail advancement. MARC's Camden Line (originally B&O) is also the country's oldest continually operating passenger railroad. The predecessor to the current MTA Light Rail system in Balt. was the first electric passenger rail system in the country. The Pennsylvania Railroad, a Northeastern and Upper Midwestern RR which was at one point the biggest corporation in the world, had an immense prescence in Maryland particularly Central MD and the Eastern Shore. Look at the desgins of Union Station and Baltimore Penn Station, I doubt you'll find stations in the South with such ornate and grand designs.

Quote:
Originally Posted by irvine View Post
The Baltimore Accent is very unique, and it has characteristics of the Virginia Piedmont dialect, Southern Appalachian dialects, as well as several Midland dialects....But to you the Baltimore accent is "northern sounding" so I suppose that for you the more "northern" traits of the accent are more pronounced?
Well, to me it sounds a lot like the Philadelphia accent, not that I'm a linguist or anything, and to tell the truth anywhere I look up information about it it's always mentioned that the two are very similar, so it's not just me. They do say though that Baltimore has a slightly more Southern sound. Here's what wikipedia (i.e. the source of all knowledge ) says:

"Baltimorese (sometimes pseudophonetically written Bawlmerese or Ballimerese) is a dialect of American English in the Mid-Atlantic United States that originated among the whiteblue-collar residents of South and Southeast Baltimore. It is spoken mostly in Baltimore City and the surrounding areas. During World War II, migrant workers from the Carolinas working in defense plants brought the southern dialect which further contributed to Baltimorese....Baltimorese closely resembles blue-collar Philadelphia-area English pronunciation in many ways. These two cities are the only major ports on the Eastern Seaboard to have never developed nonrhotic speech among white speakers; they were greatly influenced in their early development by Hiberno-English, Scottish English, and West Country English."

Geez whenever I start these posts I only plan to type a sentence or two. Oh, well...
 
Old 09-21-2009, 06:43 PM
 
Location: N/A
1,359 posts, read 3,370,962 times
Reputation: 572
Quote:
Originally Posted by KeyserSoze View Post
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.
Come on, it's a UNC poll, more than that it's an Odum Institute poll, are you really gonna question their credibility? If you want sample data: The Association of Religion Data Archives | Data Archive | [FILETITLE] | Summary. Remember that data is based on polls between 1992 and 1999. I can almost guarantee you that the number saying Maryland is Southern has dropped to at least 30% if an identical poll were taken today.
 
Old 09-21-2009, 09:13 PM
 
542 posts, read 1,332,287 times
Reputation: 354
Quote:
Originally Posted by cpterp View Post
Come on, it's a UNC poll, more than that it's an Odum Institute poll, are you really gonna question their credibility? If you want sample data: The Association of Religion Data Archives | Data Archive | [FILETITLE] | Summary. Remember that data is based on polls between 1992 and 1999. I can almost guarantee you that the number saying Maryland is Southern has dropped to at least 30% if an identical poll were taken today.
So you take everything at face value? Especially when dealing with numbers? As long as it supports your opinion, I guess it's fair game. Forget about things like:

-How many people were sampled in the state of Maryland? And did they make calls throughout the different regions of the state? Were all the regions equally represented? Were surveys conducted in the state throughout the entire 7 year period?

-Was it some good-ole boy or gal, whistling Dixie, laying it on heavy with the accent and asking "y'all"? Or was it a professor or sociologist with little to no accent with none of the "Southernisms", and conducted the survey as objectively as humanly possible?

The South means different things to different people. Everyone but you agrees that Maryland in the present is Southern to some degree, and you've shown that your knowledge outside of Central Maryland isn't very vast. That "study" etches nothing in concrete, except for the fact that the states mentioned(minus Illinois, Ohio, & Indiana) within the study can be and are considered part of the South, and that it verifies what continues to be debated. Even if I were to play along, 40% is almost half the state sample population, and the article has certain subjective phrases used to exclude some(like Maryland, if it ever was) and include others(the usual suspects, like Mississippi).
 
Old 09-21-2009, 09:46 PM
 
Location: N/A
1,359 posts, read 3,370,962 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KeyserSoze View Post
Everyone but you agrees that Maryland in the present is Southern to some degree, and you've shown that your knowledge outside of Central Maryland isn't very vast.
Why do you keep saying this? I've said over and over that I agree that Maryland does have some Southern influences. What I disagree on is how strong these influences are compared to Northern ones. Weren't you the one saying that MD is in no way Northern?

I strongly disagree with your second point. Yeah, I live in Central MD but I'm not completely oblivious to the rest of the state, most of which I have been to at some point or another.
 
Old 09-22-2009, 11:05 AM
 
518 posts, read 1,325,269 times
Reputation: 210
Quote:
Originally Posted by cpterp View Post

Geez whenever I start these posts I only plan to type a sentence or two. Oh, well...
haha. yeah. I know what you mean. My posts always end up to be quite long. But I got a deadline coming up so this will be brief. I hope.

1)
Interesting point about the Baltimore electric railway network. I'll look that up. I do recall from an urban history course I took that Richmond, VA was the first US city to have a city-wide electric streetcar network up and running "successfully." Here's a link I found: The History of Streetcars - Cable Cars

Of the train stations south of DC, I'd say Richmond's Broad Street Station, designed by John Russel Pope, was much grander than Baltimore's Penn Station. This was the station for the Richmond, Fredericksburg, and Potomac Railway. (About five years ago I took a series of photos in the abandoned railyards of Baltimore, not far from the domino plant. The old boxcars had the old RF&P logo.) Ricnmond's other station is the Victorian-era Main Street Station, which was recently renovated into an Amtrak station, and it will hopefully become a hub for future high speed rail lines. I believe there was also talk about using the Broad Street station as a rail station once again. Boston, which has always had a vibrant passenger, suburban rail system never had any architecturally significant rail stations. The old North Station was demolished about 80 years ago for the construction of the Garden, and South Station has a mildly attractive exterior, but the interior is nothing to brag about.
Here are links to Richmond's Broad Street Station and Main Street station
Union Station by John Russell Pope
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Main_St...tion_(Richmond)

When I was a little kid, I fondly remember the old streetcars in Center City Philadelphia. The current SEPTA plans call for the restoration of the Chestnut Hill--Center City--South Philadelphia line sometime in the next 15 years. Of Philadelphia's train stations I miss the old Reading Terminal, which ceased operations in 1984 I believe. So I was a toddler, but I remember the large train shed (one of the largest in the world when it was built). There are no US passenger rail stations with train sheds today. Sadly the Chicago Union Station shed was demolished in the late 60s.

So in conclusion, of the old train stations south of DC, Richmond's Broad Street station was probably the grandest, and a notch above Baltimore's Penn Station. The cities with the grandest of the old train stations on the east coast in my opinion are Richmond, DC, Baltimore, Philadelphia, and NY (Grand Central, not the new Penn station of course).

2)
thanks for posting the wikipedia link. The more academic part of my explanation of the Baltimore "accent" was based on linguistics courses I took in college. In one course, we studied the dialects of the various east coast cities, from Richmond to Boston. The Baltimore accent is quite complicated, and there is no definitive explanation for its roots. There are in fact many explanations, and the wikipedia entry you linked to covers some of those. Hopefully one day I will do some fieldwork in Baltimore for a future arcticle on the city's very unique accent. The nonrhotic aspect of the "accent" that the article mentions is largely linked to the Va Piedmont Dialect, spoken through much of Maryland. Like you, I do see similarities with the Philadelphia accent, but unlike the Philadelphia accent its Southern qualities are very pronounced. In words like fire, dipthongs become monophthongized--fire sounds like /fahr/ for example.

The Philadelphia accent is also quite interesting, but I hate how it is portrayed in movies as more of a Brooklyn-type accent, which it is clearly not. The Philadelphia accent is not just working class; a mild version of it exists among some of the old wealthy Main Line families.
 
Old 09-22-2009, 12:30 PM
 
Location: btw Bmore and DC but in the Bmore Metro Stat Area
671 posts, read 1,884,353 times
Reputation: 148
Quote:
Originally Posted by irvine View Post
haha. yeah. I know what you mean. My posts always end up to be quite long. But I got a deadline coming up so this will be brief. I hope.

1)
Interesting point about the Baltimore electric railway network. I'll look that up. I do recall from an urban history course I took that Richmond, VA was the first US city to have a city-wide electric streetcar network up and running "successfully." Here's a link I found: The History of Streetcars - Cable Cars

Of the train stations south of DC, I'd say Richmond's Broad Street Station, designed by John Russel Pope, was much grander than Baltimore's Penn Station. This was the station for the Richmond, Fredericksburg, and Potomac Railway. (About five years ago I took a series of photos in the abandoned railyards of Baltimore, not far from the domino plant. The old boxcars had the old RF&P logo.) Ricnmond's other station is the Victorian-era Main Street Station, which was recently renovated into an Amtrak station, and it will hopefully become a hub for future high speed rail lines. I believe there was also talk about using the Broad Street station as a rail station once again. Boston, which has always had a vibrant passenger, suburban rail system never had any architecturally significant rail stations. The old North Station was demolished about 80 years ago for the construction of the Garden, and South Station has a mildly attractive exterior, but the interior is nothing to brag about.
Here are links to Richmond's Broad Street Station and Main Street station
Union Station by John Russell Pope
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Main_Street_Station_(Richmond)

When I was a little kid, I fondly remember the old streetcars in Center City Philadelphia. The current SEPTA plans call for the restoration of the Chestnut Hill--Center City--South Philadelphia line sometime in the next 15 years. Of Philadelphia's train stations I miss the old Reading Terminal, which ceased operations in 1984 I believe. So I was a toddler, but I remember the large train shed (one of the largest in the world when it was built). There are no US passenger rail stations with train sheds today. Sadly the Chicago Union Station shed was demolished in the late 60s.

So in conclusion, of the old train stations south of DC, Richmond's Broad Street station was probably the grandest, and a notch above Baltimore's Penn Station. The cities with the grandest of the old train stations on the east coast in my opinion are Richmond, DC, Baltimore, Philadelphia, and NY (Grand Central, not the new Penn station of course).

2)
thanks for posting the wikipedia link. The more academic part of my explanation of the Baltimore "accent" was based on linguistics courses I took in college. In one course, we studied the dialects of the various east coast cities, from Richmond to Boston. The Baltimore accent is quite complicated, and there is no definitive explanation for its roots. There are in fact many explanations, and the wikipedia entry you linked to covers some of those. Hopefully one day I will do some fieldwork in Baltimore for a future arcticle on the city's very unique accent. The nonrhotic aspect of the "accent" that the article mentions is largely linked to the Va Piedmont Dialect, spoken through much of Maryland. Like you, I do see similarities with the Philadelphia accent, but unlike the Philadelphia accent its Southern qualities are very pronounced. In words like fire, dipthongs become monophthongized--fire sounds like /fahr/ for example.

The Philadelphia accent is also quite interesting, but I hate how it is portrayed in movies as more of a Brooklyn-type accent, which it is clearly not. The Philadelphia accent is not just working class; a mild version of it exists among some of the old wealthy Main Line families.
like Baltimore I think there are also different philly accents. I believe some people in philly say fahr.
listen to jim cramer's radio show or on cnbc.
i think some philly accents can be more new yorkish and some, baltimoreish.
 
Old 09-22-2009, 12:31 PM
 
Location: btw Bmore and DC but in the Bmore Metro Stat Area
671 posts, read 1,884,353 times
Reputation: 148
Quote:
Originally Posted by KeyserSoze View Post
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.
from my earlier post:

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 09-22-2009, 12:44 PM
 
Location: Cumberland
5,304 posts, read 8,572,158 times
Reputation: 3767
I think the article said the "Balmer" accent was never non-rhotic, meaning it has always prounced "r" in contrast to ports like New York, Norfolk, Boston, Charleston, etc.
 
Old 09-22-2009, 03:08 PM
 
542 posts, read 1,332,287 times
Reputation: 354
Quote:
Originally Posted by vivo View Post
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."
How is that possible if they supposedly sampled people from different regions of the state by area code? How do we know if a handful residents from each county of a state were all sampled over a seven year period, because there's no evidence that suggests any kind of surveying detailed enough to break the information down into something as sophisticated as county data. Doing so when your study wasn't conducted that way means you're speculating, and your study loses credibility.
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