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Anne Arundel County is a county located in the U.S. state of Maryland. It is named for Anne Arundell (1615–49), a member of the ancient family of Arundells in Cornwall, England and the wife of Cæcilius Calvert, 2nd Baron Baltimore. Its county seat is Annapolis, which is also the capital of the state. In 2010, its population was 537,656, a population increase of just under 10% since 2000.
Anne Arundel County forms part of the Baltimore-Washington metropolitan area. The center of population of Maryland is located on the county line between Anne Arundel County and Howard County, in the unincorporated town of Jessup.
The County was named for Anne Arundell, the daughter of Thomas Arundell, 1st Baron Arundell of Wardour, members of the ancient family of Arundells in Cornwall, England. She married Cæcilius Calvert, 2nd Baron Baltimore in 1627 or 1628.
Anne Arundel County was originally part of St. Mary's County in the Province of Maryland. In 1650, the year after Anne Arundell's death, the county separated and became the 3rd of 23 Maryland counties. Between 1654 and 1658, the county was known as "Providence County" by many of its early Puritan settlers.
On March 25, 1655, during the English Civil War, the Battle of the Severn was fought in Anne Arundel County between Puritan forces supporting the Commonwealth of England and forces loyal to Cæcilius Calvert. The Commonwealth forces under William Fuller were victorious.
Between 1694 and 1695, the capital of Maryland was moved from St. Mary's City in St. Mary's County to Annapolis in Anne Arundel County. Prior to the move, Annapolis was known as "Providence".
During the American Revolutionary War, citizens of Anne Arundel County supported the Continental Army by providing troops for three regiments. The 3rd Maryland Regiment, the 4th Maryland Regiment, and the 6th Maryland Regiment recruited in the county.
During the War of 1812, the USS Constitution sailed from Annapolis prior to its victorious engagement with the HMS Guerriere.
On May 22, 1830, the inaugural horse-drawn train of the B & O Railroad travelled the 13 miles (21 km) of the newly-completed track from Mount Clare Station in Baltimore City to Ellicott Mills in Anne Arundel County. This was the first regular railroad passenger service in the United States. In 1831, Land West of the railroad was considered the Howard District of Anne Arundel County. In 1851, The Howard district was broken off to form Howard County, the 21st county in Maryland.
The county has a number of properties on the National Register of Historic Places.
Anne Arundel County is located to the south of the city of Baltimore. According to the 2000 census, the county has a total area of 587.90 square miles (1,522.7 km2), of which 415.94 square miles (1,077.3 km2) (or 70.75%) is land and 171.96 square miles (445.4 km2) (or 29.25%) is water. It is located on the western side of Chesapeake Bay, with numerous rivers and tidal creeks indenting the shoreline.
Anne Arundel County's climate differs on an east-to-west axis. The eastern half of the county has a Humid subtropical climate, with hot humid summers and cool, moist winters. The western half of the county lies in the transition zone between the Humid subtropical climate zone and the humid continental climate zone, with slightly colder winter temperatures and higher snowfall totals. Annual rainfall averages hover around 40 inches per year throughout the county.
Anne Arundel County has had a charter government since 1965. The government consists of a County Executive and a seven-member County Council. The County Executive and Council members are elected in the same years Maryland conducts its gubernatorial and legislative elections, and may serve a maximum of two consecutive terms.
Anne Arundel county is one of the more reliably Republican counties among the heavily-populated suburban and urban counties in the state's Baltimore-Washington corridor. Although Republicans usually have the edge in elections there are slightly more registered Democrats.
The County Executive oversees the executive branch of the County government, which consists of a number of offices and departments. The executive branch is charged with implementing County law and overseeing the operation of the County government. The current executive, Republican John R. Leopold, was elected in 2006 and won reelection in 2010. The next election will be in 2014.
2006 Anne Arundel County Executive Election
The County Council, as the legislative branch, adopts ordinances and resolutions, and has all of the County's legislative powers.
The most recent county board election occurred November 2, 2010. The partisan makeup remained unchanged, with Republicans holding a 4-3 majority. In January 2012 the County Council declared the 1st District seat vacant after former County Council member Daryl Jones was convicted of tax evasion and began his sentence in January 2012. On March 19, 2012, the County Council voted 4-2 to appoint Peter Smith to the 1st District seat.
The median income for a household in the county was $61,768, and the median income for a family was $69,019 (these figures had risen to $79,294 and $91,071 respectively as of a 2007 estimate). Males had a median income of $43,747 versus $32,348 for females. The per capita income for the county was $27,578. About 3.60% of families and 5.10% of the population were below the poverty line, including 6.30% of those under age 18 and 5.80% of those age 65 or over.
The Naval Academy makes up a large section of Annapolis. Besides being an educational facility it is also a naval base.
Information and images courtesy of wikipedia.org