Founded in 1837, Carroll County was created from portions of the surrounding Baltimore and Frederick counties and was named for Charles Carroll III – a native Marylander and signer of the American Declaration of Independence.
Rich in both local and national histories, there are 61 properties in Carroll County on the National Register of Historic Places, ranging from local historic churches and districts to Terra Rubra, the Keysville farm and birthplace of Francis Scott Key, the author of “The Star Spangled Banner”.
The county was largely settled by German and English settlers in search of farmland. More information about the history of Carroll County can be found at the Historical Society of Carroll County.
Consisting mostly of towns and unincorporated Main-Street communities, there are only two cities in Carroll County – Westminster, which is also the county seat, and Mount Airy. The towns of Carroll County include Manchester, New Windsor, Union Bridge, Hampstead, Sykesville and Taneytown.
Recreation & Arts
Mainly an agricultural county, Carroll County hosts farmers markets throughout the year.
Visit the Union Mills Homestead and Museum to learn about life in the time of the Civil War and first-hand accounts that brought brother against brother among the Shriver family and local residents.
The Carroll County Farm Museum depicts mid-19th century rural farm life and hosts many events throughout the year – from music concerts to Civil War events to the annual Carroll County Wine Festival.
The Sykesville Gate House Museum preserves and protects the history of Sykesville through its collections, exhibits and special events throughout the year.
Carroll County offers many walking/driving/biking trails and tours – visit one or all of the 6 wineries on the Carroll Wine Trail, see the movement of troops through Maryland on one of the Civil War driving tours, take in the beauty of Carroll County while spotting the 22 barns and historic buildings displaying quilt blocks on the Barn Quilt trail, and a myriad of walking and biking tours.
The public school system in Carroll County is the 9th-largest school district in Maryland and is rated 8 out of 10 by GreatSchools.org, based on school test scores and resident reviews.
Westminster is also the home of McDaniel College, a private, four-year liberal arts college. The college was founded in 1867 and was the first co-educational institution south of the Mason–Dixon line. McDaniel also maintains a sister-campus in Budapest, allowing their students to train abroad for a semester. Over the years, McDaniel has provided an excellent education to many notable people, including a distant cousin of one of our own HodosGroup team-members, Sadie Kneller Miller (class of 1885), one of the first female international journalists, covering events and subjects from baseball to politics.
Newspapers & Media
The Carroll County Times is the local newspaper for the county. Other online news resources also include the Maryland Patch, with local versions published for Westminster and Eldersburg.
As of 2014, the largest employer in Carroll County is the public school system. The business of the county is still largely agricultural, but groups like the Chamber of Commerce and the Department of Economic Development work tirelessly in the county to bring new business and projects, as well as keeping the county a pleasant and affordable place to do business.
According to the Department of Economic Development, Carroll County “boasts concentrations of highly educated productive workers, an emerging technology sector and a solid manufacturing tradition that blends with our rural heritage. We are a growing community that has, over the past five years, produced thousands of new jobs in a dynamic and diverse economy.”