Scottish Place Names
- Baltimore, Maryland, USA

Plaque on Wallace Statue, Baltimore

For comparability with other large cities around the world, Greater Baltimore has been defined as the entire urban area including and surrounding the City of Baltimore. This area extends from Reisterstown, Cockeysville and Aberdeen in the north to the Howard Duckett Reservoir, Crofton and Annapolis in the south. This is a vast metropolitan area, typical of the urban sprawl that characterises American cities as a consequence of the steady population influx from rural areas, the post-WWII baby boom and the 1960s 'flight to the suburbs'.

A total of 2,316 communities and neighbourhoods have been identified to date in the Baltimore-Annapolis area. Of the names of these localities, 410 (17.7%) are based wholly or in part on Scottish family names, on place names that can be found in Scotland, or on Scottish words. Of course, many of the names are used in other parts of the British Isles as well but 148 (6.4%) of these appear to be exclusive to Scotland.

Communities, neighbourhoods and suburbs with names that occur only in Scotland and not elsewhere in the British Isles, and/or are definitely, or most probably, of Scottish origin are:

Aberdeen, Castlegate
  • Aberdeen and Aberdeen Hills - Aberdeen (illustrated here) is Scotland's third largest city. According to Kenny (1984), the authority on Maryland place names, the name of this community is attributed to a Mr. Winston, of Aberdeen, Scotland, who settled alongside the Pennsylvania, Wilmington and Baltimore Railroad when the line was built in 1892 and who became the first postmaster.
  • Alloway (South Ayrshire - the birthplace of Robert Burns, Scotland's national poet).
  • Atholton (Atholl in Perth & Kinross). Kenny (1984, p. 33) provides the following explanation: "Nearby Atholton Manor is the site of 'Athol,' built by Rev. James McGill, who was born in Scotland in 1701. Atholl, Perthshire, was perhaps his birthplace." (See also Macgills Common below).

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