Kim Hairston, The Baltimore Sun
May 17, 2008
"Maryland, My Maryland," written by James Ryder Randall in 1861 and sung to the tune of "O Christmas Tree," has been the state song since 1939. Several attempts have been made to replace it -- the song was written by a Confederate sympathizer during the Civil War and refers to Abraham Lincoln as a "despot." But the song has stubbornly hung in there and is played at all sorts of big-time Maryland events, including the Preakness (above).