Worcester County, Maryland

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Worcester County (pronounced /ˈwʊstər/) is the easternmost county located in the U.S. state of Maryland. The county contains the entire length of the state's Atlantic coast line. It is home to the popular vacation resort area of Ocean City. It was named for an Earl of Worcester. Its county seat is Snow Hill.[1] It is included in the Ocean Pines, Maryland, Micropolitan Statistical Area. The population was 46,543 at the 2000 census.[2]



Worcester County was created by the division of Somerset County in 1742. The county seat, previously located near the confluence of Dividing Creek with the Pocomoke River, was transferred to the river port of Snow Hill, at the head of navigation of the Pocomoke, near the center of the new county.

Both Somerset and Worcester Counties were early on divided into hundreds, from south to north: Mattapony, Pocomoke, Boquetenorton, Wicomico, and Baltimore Hundreds. Later subdivisions of the hundreds added Pitts Creek, Acquango, Queponco, and Buckingham & Worcester Hundreds, all of which in turn became election districts following American independence. Competing territorial claims between the Calverts of Maryland and the Penns of Pennsylvania and of what later became the state of Delaware led to the surveying of Worcester County's northern border, the Transpeninsular Line in 1751, though boundary disputes continued through the rest of the colonial period. In 1779, Stephen Decatur, hero of the Barbary Wars, was born at Sinepuxent, near what is today the town of Berlin.

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