Washington DC – the capital of the United States; population 591 thousand people (2008, with suburbs 5.3 million people). The city is located in the eastern United States within the specially created Federal District of Columbia. It borders Maryland on three sides and is separated from Virginia by the Potomac River on the fourth.
The city’s economy is based on the public sector. Here are the highest authorities of the country, most of the government agencies. national trade union organizations. Various international organizations (including the World Bank, International Monetary Fund). Tourism is the second most important sector of the economy. The service sector is highly developed. Food, printing, military industry. Three airports: National, Baltimore-Washington International and Dulles International Airport. Metropolitan. Colleges and universities, including Georgetown University (founded in 1789), George Washington University (1821), Howard University, Catholic University of America (1889), American University (1893), District University Columbia (1851), Gallaudet University (for the deaf and dumb). various political, economic and research centers, including the Brookings Institution, National Academy of Sciences, National Research Center, National Academy of Engineering, Institute of Medicine, National Institutes of Health. The city is diverse in terms of population: three-fifths of the population are African Americans, less than a fifth are whites, and the rest are Hispanics and Asians.
- AbbreviationFinder: Introduction to the state of Washington DC, covering commonly used acronyms and the list of main cities and town in Washington DC.
The city was founded in 1791. The issue of building the capital has been discussed in the Senate since 1783. However, only by 1790 did congressmen come to a compromise and decided that the capital would be located on the Potomac River – between the South and North of the then 13 states. President George Washington personally chose a place for the construction of the capital (the city is named after him). Under the capital, the state of Maryland allocated an area of 259 square kilometers, which included the cities of Alexandria and Georgetown and the settlement of Hamburg. The creator of the first development plan was a Frenchman, a military associate of Washington, P. Lanfan, but his plan was fully implemented only after the Second World War. The government officially moved to Washington in 1800, by which time the White House was built. and the Senate wing of the Capitol. The first president whose inauguration took place in Washington was T. Jefferson.
In 1814, the city was captured by the British during the Anglo-American War of 1812-1814 and burned down, but soon rebuilt. Until the mid-19th century, Washington was actually a small town. After the end of the Civil War about 40,000 freed black African Americans settled here. Since 1878, the administrative boundaries of the city have completely coincided with the boundaries of the Federal District of Columbia. In the 1930s, the Supreme Court and other administrative buildings were built, forming the so-called Federal Triangle. In 1941, the construction of the National Airport and the Pentagon building was completed. The city grew significantly after the end of World War II, its area expanded significantly due to the suburbs, where buildings of federal importance grew. The construction boom of the 1980s touched the older areas, especially Downtown.
The city has a clear layout, created according to the ideas of P. Langfan. In the center are the Capitol (Congress Building, 1793-1865), the White House (the president’s residence, 1792-1829), along with The Mall (The Mall, an esplanade modeled after the Champs Elysees, connects the Capitol to the Lincoln Monument), The central street connecting the Capitol and the White House is called Pennsylvania Avenue.
The streets radiate from the Capitol and bear the name of the states (there are streets in the city with the name of all 50 states), at the intersections of the streets there are vast squares, which are called circles (circles) or squares. Monuments to the heroes of the War of Independence and the Civil War are erected on the squares (for example, on Dupont Circle Square, dedicated to Admiral S.F. Dupont, there is a monument in his honor), there are over 300 monuments in the city.
Other downtown attractions include Saints Peter and Paul Cathedral, U.S. Supreme Court, Library of Congress, Washington Obelisk and Equestrian Statue, A. Lincoln and T. Jefferson Memorials, Smithsonian Institution (museum complex), National Air and Space Museum, National art gallery, Freer Art Galleries, Corcoran. On the opposite side of the Potomac River in Arlington, Virginia, is the Department of Defense (“Pentagon”) complex, as well as Arlington National Memorial Cemetery.