Worcester (old) County, Maryland GenealogyEdit This Page

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United States > Maryland > old Worcester County


  • Old Worcester county was created on the previously neglected ocean side of Maryland shortly after a 26 November 1669 surveyor report of Dutch encroachment at Cape Henlopen (see New Netherland). [1]
  • Old Worcester County, Maryland extended along the entire Atlantic coast between Virginia (southern most branch of Rehobeth Bay) and Pennsylvania (40o north latitude). This included all of the present day State of Delaware. It also seems to have included Durham County which had just been organized by the Maryland Council a month before in what is now southern Kent County, Delaware, and northern Sussex County, Delaware.[1]
  • 47 new land grants for Maryland were granted in Durham County as late as 1682, although Durham County should have been incorporated into old Worcester County, Maryland in 1670.[2]
  • In 1674, at the end of an Anglo-Dutch war, the Duke of York assumed authority over the Delaware part of New Netherland which overlapped Maryland's sparsely settled claim. In 1682 the Duke of York paid an old debt by giving his claim of Delaware's lands to William Penn. Penn immediately declared an act of union between the Delaware counties and Pennsylvania.[3]
  • In 1738 after many years of dispute Maryland recognized the claim of Pennsylvania to the lower three counties on the Delaware River (now the State of Delaware).[4] This marked the apparent end of the old Worcester County, Maryland.


  1. 1.0 1.1 Reginald V. Truitt, and Millard G. Les Callette, Worcester County Maryland’s Arcadia (Snow Hill, Md.: Worcester County Historical Society, 1977), 39 and 43. [FHL book 975.221 H2t; fiche 6087644]
  2. Ibid., 43.
  3. Ibid., 44-48.
  4. Ibid., 48.


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