Washington, District of Columbia

Washington, D.C. is the center of politics in the United States. It is home to some of the nation's biggest heroes who have laid the foundation of the nation's democracy and helped the nation grow to what it is today. The numerous historical sites, museums and the laid back atmosphere of the city also add to the backdrop of the capital of the United States of America.

Washington, D.C. offers many dining opportunities, shopping locations and plenty of museums and historical sites. The city is also brimming with events throughout the year with parties, free museum events, concerts, conferences, political rallies, etc.

Among the most popular monuments and memorials include the African American Civil War Memorial and Museum, Arlington National Cemetery, DC War Memorial, Eisenhower Memorial, Franklin D Roosevelt Memorial, Jefferson Memorial, Lincoln Memorial, and Washington Monument. Other places worth visiting are the Capitol Building and the White House.

About Washington D.C.

Washington D.C. is a great place for families and individuals to explore and visit. The city's streets were laid out in an organized fashion from the beginning, and monuments and memorials are placed in a well-planned manner. Because it is the capital of the United States, it is a key city in the role of global politics and finance.

Washington D.C. History

The city of Washington, D.C. has played a major role in the formation of the modern United States of America. Even prior to its transformation into the political center and capital of the country, the area was rich with history.

When the Europeans arrived in the 17th century to the region, the area was inhabited by a group of Native Americans known as the Nacotchtank who spoke the rare language Algonquian. The people lived around the Anacostia River on the northern banks. By the 18th century, it was vacated by the Native Americans who moved to the North.

The area was previously in the Province of Maryland and was named Georgetown in 1751 on the northern banks of the Potomac River. Forty years later, Georgetown was included by the government into a federal territory.

The need for a federal district was realized by James Madison who in 1788 pushed the need for a place which could provide for its own safety and maintenance. The need was greatly felt when, in 1783, a mob of angry soldiers attacked the Philadelphia Congress in the Pennsylvania Mutiny. Philadelphia, at that time, served as a temporary capital for the newly formed United States of America. Thereafter, an authority was charted in the United States Constitution which allowed the formation of a District that was not part of any state or county, which did not exceed ten miles square. The constitution did not specify a location for the formation of the capital; it was later by the efforts of Thomas Jefferson, Alexander Hamilton and James Madison that an agreement was made with the federal government to locate the district in the Southern United States.

In the Residence Act of 1790, the location of the new district was identified as next to Potomac River, an area that was previously selected by President George Washington. The new, yet unnamed federal city was given an initial square with each side 10 miles on each side. The city was created to the east of the established settlement Georgetown.

The city witnessed the war of 1812 when the British forces attacked the capital, but most of the destroyed federal buildings were restored. The district practiced slavery, but it was later abolished in 1862 and today Washington, D.C. has the highest population share of African-Americans. The abolition of the slave trade had a huge impact on the city of Alexandria, which then was located in the Washington County. The lack of attention from the capital lead to Alexandria being handed over to Virginia and the end of Washington County. In 1871, a new government was created for the federal territory. A Board of Public works was also established and is charged with the beautification and modernization of the State Capital.

Washington D.C.'s population was relatively stable until it increased during the Great Depression of the 1930's and again following World War 2. By 1950 the state had close to a 0.8 million people. 

In 1986, the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr. spilled violence on to the streets that ended up damaging most of the buildings and stores, which took until 1990 to be repaired completely.

About Washington D.C., Washington D.C

Washington D.C. (formally known as District of Columbia) is the capital of the United States. The city of Washington is not part of any state, but is a special district created to serve as the permanent capital of United States as per the guidelines of the United States Constitution. The centers of all the three federal government branches are located in Washington D.C. The city of Washington, D.C. is located along the borders of Maryland and Virginia and is located on the northern banks of Potomac River.

Washington D.C. is home to more than six hundred thousand people; however, during the weekdays the overall population of the city rises to one million because of commuters coming in from surrounding suburbs. The Washington Metropolitan Area, which includes the full District of Columbia and parts of Virginia and Maryland, has a population of 5.6 million. This makes the Washington Metropolitan the seventh largest in the United States.

Washington D.C. has a total area of more than 68 square miles. The region occupied by the District of Columbia was ceded by the state of Maryland and Virginia. One river passes through the district and splits into its tributaries Rock Creek and Anacostia River. The most surprising fact about Washington D.C. is that more than 19 percent of its area is parkland, tying with New York.

Because of its political role in international relations, Washington D.C. has more than 176 foreign embassies located there. The city is also home to the headquarters of the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank, the Pan American Health Organization and the Inter-American Development Bank, along with many other important financial headquarters. 

The city is one of the few cities in United States that was planned from scratch by a designer known as Pierre Charles L'Enfant. L'Enfant was ordered by Thomas Jefferson in 1791 to plan the layout of the capital of United States with inspirations from cities such as Amsterdam, Frankfurt, Paris, Milan and Karlsruhe. The city is modeled based on the Baroque style with avenues radiating from rectangles that served as open spaces.

Washington D.C. has unique demographics, because of its large population of African-Americans which constitutes up to 50.7 percent. The city includes people from all over the world such as Vietnam, El Salvador, India, China, and Ethiopia, among many others.

About Washington County, Washington D.C

Washington D.C. is not currently part of any county. It is a special federal district formed with the sole purpose of serving the country as its capital. However, before 1871 Washington D.C. was part of the Washington County D.C., one of the initial five political entities contained within the District of Columbia.

In an act passed by the Congress in 1846, land Virginia ceded to the district were returned to Virginia, leaving the Washington County D.C. in District of Columbia as a sole county. The County was largely composed of large farmlands, estates and also the United States Soldiers Retirement Home.

The County of Washington was governed by a group of Justices of the Peace that answered to the Levy Court council. The members of the Justices of the Peace were responsible for the duties of county commissioners and were held accountable under the state of Maryland's laws. After the passing of the District of Columbia act by the congress in 1871, the County of Washington ceased to exist and led to the creation of a single government by merging the City of Washington and Georgetown under the District of Columbia.