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Allegany County, Maryland facts for kids

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Allegany County
Allegany County
Allegany County Courthouse
Allegany County Courthouse
Flag of Allegany County
Official seal of Allegany County
Map of Maryland highlighting Allegany County
Location within the U.S. state of Maryland
Map of the United States highlighting Maryland
Maryland's location within the U.S.
Country  United States
State  Maryland
Founded December 25, 1789
Named for Allegheny Mountains
Seat Cumberland
Largest city Cumberland
 • Total 430 sq mi (1,100 km2)
 • Land 424 sq mi (1,100 km2)
 • Water 5.8 sq mi (15 km2)  1.3%%
 • Estimate 
 • Density 169/sq mi (65/km2)
Time zone UTC−5 (Eastern)
 • Summer (DST) UTC−4 (EDT)
Congressional district 6th

Allegany County is a county located in the northwestern part of the U.S. state of Maryland. As of the 2010 census, the population was 75,087. Its county seat is Cumberland. The name Allegany may come from a local Lenape word, welhik hane or oolikhanna, which means 'best flowing river of the hills' or 'beautiful stream'. A number of counties in the Appalachian region of the US are named Allegany, Allegheny, or Alleghany.

Allegany County is part of the Cumberland, MD-WV Metropolitan Statistical Area. It is a part of the Western Maryland "panhandle".


The western part of Maryland (including the present Allegany County) was originally part of Prince George's County when Maryland was formed in 1696. This county included six current counties, and by repeated splitting, new ones were generated: Frederick from Prince George's in 1748; and Montgomery and Washington from Frederick in 1776.

Allegany County was formed in 1789 by the splitting of Washington County. At the time it was the westernmost county in Maryland, but a split in 1872 produced Garrett County, the current westernmost county.

Prior to 1789, the Virginia Commonwealth claimed the area of present-day Garrett and Allegheny Counties, of Maryland. A 1771-1780 map of Virginias counties, shows Hampshire County, but the Virginia State boundary has Hampshire outside that boundary line. When conducting genealogical research, it is possible to find tax records for Hampshire County, Virginia included in Maryland records, and Maryland records in Hampshire County... Hampshire County was formed in 1758 by the Virginia Commonwealth and at its founding, included the present day counties of Garrett & Allegheny Counties in Maryland, and Hardy, Grant, Mineral, and part of Morgan Counties in what is now West Virginia. Ref. Virginia Counties Map of 1771-1780; Henry Howe's 1845 History of Virginia.

The county has a number of properties on the National Register of Historic Places.

Allegany County is often referred to as "Where the South Begins."


According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 430 square miles (1,100 km2), of which 424 square miles (1,100 km2) is land and 5.8 square miles (15 km2) (1.3%) is water.

Allegany County lies primarily in the Ridge-and-Valley Country of the Appalachian Mountains. It is bordered to the north by the Mason–Dixon line with Pennsylvania, to the south by the Potomac River and West Virginia, to the east by Sideling Hill Creek and Washington County, Maryland, and to the west by a land border with Garrett County, Maryland. The western part of the county contains a portion of the steep Allegheny Front, which marks the transition to the higher-elevation Appalachian Plateau and Allegheny Mountain region. The town of Frostburg is located west of the Front at an elevation of nearly 2,100 feet above sea level, while the county seat of Cumberland, only eight miles away, has an elevation of only 627 feet.


Adjacent counties

National protected areas


Major highways

  • I-68.svg Interstate 68
  • US 40.svg U.S. Route 40
  • Alt plate.svg
    US 40.svg US 40 Alt.
  • Scenic plate.svg
    US 40.svg U.S. Route 40 Scenic
  • US 220.svg U.S. Route 220
  • MD Route 35.svg Maryland Route 35
  • MD Route 36.svg Maryland Route 36
  • MD Route 47.svg Maryland Route 47
  • MD Route 49.svg Maryland Route 49
  • MD Route 51.svg Maryland Route 51
  • MD Route 53.svg Maryland Route 53
  • MD Route 55.svg Maryland Route 55
  • MD Route 135.svg Maryland Route 135
  • MD Route 144.svg Maryland Route 144
  • MD Route 638.svg Maryland Route 638
  • MD Route 657.svg Maryland Route 657
  • MD Route 658.svg Maryland Route 658
  • MD Route 935.svg Maryland Route 935
  • MD Route 936.svg Maryland Route 936
  • MD Route 956.svg Maryland Route 956


Public transportation

  • Allegany County Transit


Historical population
Census Pop.
1790 4,809
1800 6,303 31.1%
1810 6,909 9.6%
1820 8,654 25.3%
1830 10,609 22.6%
1840 15,690 47.9%
1850 22,769 45.1%
1860 28,348 24.5%
1870 38,536 35.9%
1880 38,012 −1.4%
1890 41,571 9.4%
1900 53,694 29.2%
1910 62,411 16.2%
1920 69,938 12.1%
1930 79,098 13.1%
1940 86,973 10.0%
1950 89,556 3.0%
1960 84,169 −6.0%
1970 84,044 −0.1%
1980 80,548 −4.2%
1990 74,946 −7.0%
2000 74,930 0.0%
2010 75,087 0.2%
2015 (est.) 72,528 −3.4%
U.S. Decennial Census
1790-1960 1900-1990
1990-2000 2010-2015

2010 census

As of the 2010 United States Census, there were 75,087 people, 29,177 households, and 17,959 families residing in the county. The population density was 177.0 inhabitants per square mile (68.3/km2). There were 33,311 housing units at an average density of 78.5 per square mile (30.3/km2). The racial makeup of the county was 89.2% white, 8.0% black or African American, 0.8% Asian, 0.1% American Indian, 0.2% from other races, and 1.6% from two or more races. Those of Hispanic or Latino origin made up 1.4% of the population. In terms of ancestry, 31.8% were German, 14.6% were Irish, 11.9% were English, 11.8% were American, and 5.6% were Italian.

Of the 29,177 households, 26.0% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 46.0% were married couples living together, 11.0% had a female householder with no husband present, 38.4% were non-families, and 31.6% of all households were made up of individuals. The average household size was 2.30 and the average family size was 2.86. The median age was 40.9 years.

The median income for a household in the county was $37,747 and the median income for a family was $52,680. Males had a median income of $42,322 versus $29,594 for females. The per capita income for the county was $20,764. About 9.6% of families and 14.5% of the population were below the poverty line, including 18.3% of those under age 18 and 8.8% of those age 65 or over.

Natural resources

The primary mineral resources extracted for use in Allegany County are coal, iron, sandstone, and limestone. Coal bearing formations are concentrated in the Georges Creek Basin in the western part of the county.


Allegany County Urban Areas



Census-designated places

Occupying a middle ground between incorporated and unincorporated areas are Special Tax Districts, quasi-municipal unincorporated areas created by legislation passed by the Maryland General Assembly.[1] They lack home rule authority and must petition the General Assembly for changes affecting the authority of the district. There are eight Special Tax Districts in the county:

Other census-designated places in the county include:

Unincorporated communities

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