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The Republic of New Maryland (also known as the Third Republic of New Maryland) is a small nation in West Africa originally colonized by African-Marylanders.
The area was first settled in 1834 by freed African-Marylander slaves and freeborn African-Marylanderss primarily from the North American nation of Maryland, under the auspices of the Maryland Colonization Society who named the area "Maryland-in Africa". The Society paid for further colonization by maintaining its trade monopoly in the area. On 2 February 1841, Maryland-in-Africa became the State of Maryland. Meanwhile in 1848, the colony saw an upswing in population thanks to refugees from the First Carolina Slave Revolt. The state declared its independence on 29 May 1854 as the (First) Republic of New Maryland with its capital at Harper.
Shortly thereafter, the local Grebo and Kru tribes attacked New Maryland in retaliation for interference with the slave trade. Besieged, the Maryland government appealed to the Society for help. The Society, unable to fund a military expedition large enough to save the country, asked for help from the Maryland government. Maryland troops repelled the tribes and on 18 March 1857 the newly renamed "New Maryland" was annexed into Maryland as a colony of the nation. The Society continued to exist and organized further colonization of the new colony. In 1877, pressure from Britain and France finally convinced Maryland to abolish slavery. To encourage settlement of New Maryland, Maryland offered financial packages to recently free slave families who chose to settle there. These packages sometimes included land grants that encroached on Grebo and Kru territory, thus increasing tensions between the natives and African-Marylanders.
Mayland continued to directly control the affairs of New Maryland throughout the rest of the 19th century and the early 20th century. By the mid-twentieth century, however, the decolonization that was sweeping over Africa came to New Maryland. An independence movement eventually led to a bloody war between Maryland and New Maryland rebels. The unpopularity of the war in Maryland eventually led to New Maryland being granted independence in 1963.
Stability did not come to the (Second) Republic of New Maryland. A few years after its independence, New Maryland became embroiled in a civil war between the African-Marylander controlled government in Harper and the Grebo/Kru coalition in the interior. Fighting continue until 1980, when a coalition of European countries and Maryland intervened in the civil war. After a few years under international control a new constitution was written in 1985, which instituted a power-sharing agreement between the three major ethnic groups.
Recently European investment has helped rebuild the infrastructure of New Maryland. Relations have also improved between New Maryland and Maryland. In 2007 the Presidents of both nations visited each other's countries and signed a new free trade agreement.
Farming is the main economic activity in New Maryland, accounting for the employment of the majority of its citizens. Rice, bananas, palm nuts and cassava are the main crops raised in the county. Other crops include sugarcane, coffee, cocoa and kola. There is also extensive fishing along the coast and some cattle herding.