Berlin, Ira.Slaves Without Masters: The Free Negro in the Antebellum South. New York: Pantheon Books, 1974.
Annotation / Notes: The author spends some time discussing Maryland, and the Upper South in general, in order to emphasize geographic distinctions which impacted the status of free Negroes. He postulates that the treatment and status of free blacks foreshadowed the treatment of black people in general after emancipation. In addition, the author examines the various classes of free blacks to understand how different groups viewed their social role. For the elite, positions of leadership continued after the Civil War. Maryland is of particular interest since by 1810, almost one-quarter of Maryland's black population was free. Maryland therefore had the largest free black population of any state in the nation.
Reps, John.Tidewater Towns: City Planning in Colonial Virginia and Maryland. Williamsburg, VA: Colonial Williamsburg Foundation, 1972.
Annotation / Notes: Early towns did not generally spring out of nowhere. Town planning was common and an important part of Chesapeake Maryland's colonial history. The government played an active role in the founding and formation of towns. Annapolis and the District of Columbia were unique in that their plans did not resemble those common amongst other English colonies.
Thomas, Joseph Brown, Jr. Settlement, Community, and Economy: The Development of Towns in Maryland's Lower Eastern Shore, 1660-1775. Ph.D. diss., University of Maryland, 1994.
Annotation / Notes: Thomas argues that the seventeen clustered settlements that dotted the lower Eastern Shore actually functioned as towns. Although legislatively established they have been largely ignored in the history of the Chesapeake region. Most historians argue that the area was rural, when in fact its character was between urban and rural.
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