Washington, D.C.

Article

May 28, 2022

Washington, D.C. (pronounced in English: [ˈwɒʃɪŋtən diː siː, ˈwɔːʃɪŋtən diː siː] (listen )) is the capital and federal district of the United States. A.D. is the abbreviation for District of Columbia, where the city is located. The city of Washington and the District of Columbia are coextensive with each other, governed by a single government, which is unique in the country, and for this reason, they are commonly considered the same administrative entity. This was not always the case, however, as other cities existed within the boundaries of the District of Columbia until 1871, when they were gradually merged with Washington, D.C. through an Act of Congress. The city has two historical names, Federal City and Washington City. The District of Columbia, officially formed on July 16, 1790, is the federal district of the United States, as specified by the US Constitution, with limited local power. The US Congress has absolute authority over its legislature, which has veto power. Washingtonians do not have voting representatives in Congress. Washington, D.C. was formed through land ceded by the states of Maryland and Virginia. In 1847, the region that had been ceded by Virginia was returned, almost the entirety of this area is now Arlington County. The construction of Washington began in 1792, being inaugurated in 1800, the same year that it became the North American capital. Washington was named after the first President of the United States, George Washington, while the term District of Columbia derives from an early poetic name for the United States, Columbia.Washington, D.C. is situated in the east of the country on the north bank of the Potomac River. According to the 2020 national census, its population is almost 690,000, while its metropolitan area has about 6.4 million inhabitants (almost 10 million together with the Baltimore metropolitan area, located 100 km from Washington). It is the 20th most populous city in the country. Washington is home to the headquarters of the three arms of the United States government, the Legislative, Executive and Judiciary. In addition, the city also houses the headquarters of the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank, the Organization of American States, among several other national and international institutions.

History

Native Americans lived in the District of Columbia region for at least four thousand years before the arrival of the first European explorers. John Smith was one of the first European explorers to visit the region. Smith explored the region in 1608 and found the Nacotchtank, a native group that spoke an Algonquin language.

Foundation

At the beginning of its independence (1776), the United States did not have a fixed capital and the meetings of the First Continental Congress, the Second Continental Congress, the Confederation Congress and the United States Constituent took place in nine different cities. In 1783, a riot during a congressional meeting in Philadelphia forced congressmen out of the city in what became known as the Pennsylvania Riot of 1783. Local officials refused to face the riot and the need for an independent state capital was discussed. in the Philadelphia Convention in 1787. The first article of the constitution included the power of Congress to fully govern a district to be established as the seat of federal government. However, the constitution did not establish the specific location where the district would be. There was a conflict of interest between the northern and southern regions of the United States for the location of the district. Northern states preferred the capital in one of the country's large cities, all belonging to the north. While the southern states favored a capital closer to their slave and agricultural interests.Alexander