Lt. Gov. Anthony G. Brown, a democrat running for governor, accompanies his daughter Rebecca Brown to vote in Landover on Thursday. (Photo by Juana Arias for the Washington Post) (JUANA ARIAS/For The Washington Post)

On the first day of early voting for the Maryland gubernatorial primary, 20,382 people cast ballots, according to the State Board of Elections. That’s the highest number the state has seen in a single day of early voting a for a primary, giving hope that overall turnout for the election might not be as low as expected.

Nearly three-quarters of those votes came from Democrats. The largest numbers of ballots were in the state’s most populous areas, including Baltimore County (3,143), Prince George’s County (2,727), Montgomery County (2,480) and Baltimore (2,345).

Maryland started offering early voting in 2010. During the gubernatorial primary that year, 77,288 people voted. The first day attracted 14,049 voters while the last day resulted in 18,081 ballots.

Early voting numbers have been much higher during general elections, which generally attract more people. For the 2010 gubernatorial election, nearly 220,000 people voted early. For the 2012 presidential election, that number was 3.7 million.

Early voting started on Thursday and runs until Thursday, June 19. Each county has at least one voting center open from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. (The Maryland State Board of Elections has a list of the early voting locations.)