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Placed under the authority of President George Washington, the D.C. Boundary Stones were laid out along the former D.C. boundary lines between 1791-1792, marking the border between Washington, Virginia and Maryland.  Of the original 40 stones, 36 survive today with                                                       the other four stones having been replaced by replicas.    With the Alexandria Retrocession of 1846, a process                                                       where land seized by the Federal government in 1790 was returned to Virginia, many of these stones do not                                                         actually mark the current D.C. border.  A vast swath of the stones exist in the Northern Virginia communities                                                       of  Alexandria, Arlington and McLean. The rest of the stones run along the District's Southeast, Northeast and                                                       Northwest borders.  Today these stones symbolize not only boundaries between states and the District of                                                               Columbia, but also boundaries between different segments of society.  Some of the stones are located in very                                                       wealthy areas, while others are in economically challenged areas known for gun violence, homelessness                                                               and poverty.  The condition of some of the stones reflects this.  This website aims to provide a better                                                                     understanding of the stones to people who are curious to learn more about their significance through the use of                                                     QR codes which are placed on many of the fences surrounding the stones.  By clicking on "Individual                                                                Stones" at the top of the page, you will see a list of hyperlinks that will take you to a page dedicated to each 

                                              stone which lists its location, nearby features, and other interesting information.                    



          1. "Boundary Stones of the District of Columbia,"

Boundary Stones of the District of Columbia, February 4, 2020,

          2. "Modest Monuments: The District of Columbia Boundary Stones,"

Library of Congress, United States Congress, May 17, 2017, 

         3. Richard Brownell, "The Alexandria Retrocession of 1846," Boundary Stones WETA's Local History Blog,  July 8, 2016,  


         4. See note 1 above.   


Welcome to a History of the D.C. Boundary Stones





One of the QR Codes

   that take Visitors

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