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city, seat (1776) of Montgomery county, west-central Maryland, U.S., a northwestern suburb of Washington, D.C. The settlement originated during the Revolutionary period around Hungerford's tavern and was known first as Montgomery Court House and later as Williamsburg. Designated a town in 1801, it was renamed for nearby Rock Creek. The Great Falls of the Potomac River are 9 miles (14 km) southwest. Since World War II the city has become a focus of commercial development with emphasis on research and technology (computers, biotechnology, and communications). It is the location of the Food and Drug Administration, the Health Resources and Services Administration, the Institute for Genomic Research, and the Rockville campus of Montgomery College (1946). Novelist F. Scott Fitzgerald and his wife, Zelda, are buried in St. Mary's Cemetery. Inc. city, 1860. Pop. (1990) 44,835; (2000) 47,388.