Talk:Washington, D.C./Archive 5

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search


Koeppen Climate Classification

Before this starts into a edit war, I wanted to explain my reasons for reverting the changes to the climate classification as indicated on this page. To me, using this map as a source is not sufficient; the map does not provide the level of resolution necessary to specifically determine where the District lies. While it may appear on the "transition line" between the two areas, further research shows that it is clearly in the humid subtropical region Cfa. The new source I referenced not only provides the Koeppen-Geiger map, but also provides the data sets used to generate the image. Washington, D.C., is located roughly at 38.5 degrees north, 77 degrees west. Loading the data into a GIS mapping utility, or simply downloading the text-based (ASCII) file, one can easily find D.C.'s exact latitude and longitude and sure enough, we are located in zone Cfa. I couldn't find a single point in the District of Columbia that is not located in zone Cfa. Hopefully this clears up the dispute. Best, epicAdam(talk) 02:55, 3 December 2009 (UTC)

I agree that the map is too rough a tool for this task. (Try to find the State of Michigan on it!) Thanks for tracking down a more precise source. JohnInDC (talk) 11:03, 3 December 2009 (UTC)
Epicadam, I am echoing JohnInDC's gratitutde! Perhaps "transitional" was not the correct term to use, but I was trying to illustrate that Washington sits at the near limit of the Cfa zone, and this may explain why Washington has little in common (outside of hot, muggy summers) with other, more typical Cfa zones such as Charleston, NC or Houston, let alone Orlando (at least based on the data- I've never been there). So be the flaws in the Koeppen system. Cheers! Koppenlady (talk) 23:18, 3 December 2009 (UTC)

Update reference to Washington Blade

{{editsemiprotected}} A number of community and specialty papers focus on neighborhood and cultural issues including: the weekly DC Agenda (established by former staff of the Washington Blade after the abrupt closing of the paper by its parent organization) and Metro Weekly, which focus on LGBT issues; —Preceding unsigned comment added by Mickjddc (talkcontribs)

Good catch. On a somewhat related note, The Washington Times is no longer considered a local paper; it's distributed for free (in certain areas of the city), much like Politico. APK whisper in my ear 18:13, 7 December 2009 (UTC)

Done Welcome and thanks for contributing. Celestra (talk) 20:22, 7 December 2009 (UTC)

Thanks for updating the article, Celestra. (I was in the process, but RL got in the way of WP time. Travesty, I tell ya.) Talk page watchers, should any of the following D.C.-based publications be mentioned in this article, as opposed to Media in Washington, D.C. (red links need TLC): The Politico, Washingtonian, The Washington Examiner, The Washington Monthly, Congressional Quarterly, The Washington Diplomat, Washington Jewish Week, The InTowner, Washington Life, Capitol File, Washington Business Journal, The Georgetowner, Hill Rag, DC, Washington Flyer.
I assume D.C.-based publications catering to a national/international audience should be mentioned on Media in Washington, D.C.: National Journal, The New Republic, Kiplinger's Personal Finance, Smithsonian, The Atlantic, National Geographic, Stars and Stripes, U.S. News & World Report, United Press International, Science, Scripps Howard News Service, Policy Review, The Wilson Quarterly, The Middle East Journal, Air & Space, Sojourners, The Cook Political Report, AARP the Magazine, The Weekly Standard, etc. APK whisper in my ear 00:28, 8 December 2009 (UTC)
Hey folks. I altered the article just a bit to just include the direct link. If people want to read about the sad Blade saga, they can do so in much better detail on its own page. As for the newspapers that APK mentions, all the publications in that paragraph have the following in common: They're all based in DC, have city-wide distribution, are published at least weekly, and dedicate a significant amount of coverage to local news. Most of the publications mentioned above are entirely focused on national issues. The only major outliers I can find are the Washington Business Journal and Washington Examiner, which have a substantial readership and is locally focused. The other publications are smaller neighborhood/community newspapers that do not have city-wide readership (some are little more than newsletters). As such, I think maintaining them in the subarticle is fine, but I'd like to hear from other editors too. Best, epicAdam(talk) 02:52, 8 December 2009 (UTC)

just my 2 cents

hey everyone, tell me what you think: in the second paragraph, this line appears: "The Washington Metropolitan Area, of which the District is a part, has a population of 5.3 million, the ninth-largest metropolitan area in the country." maybe we can add this link: to the words: "ninth-largest". basically change the sentence so it looks like this:

The Washington Metropolitan Area, of which the District is a part, has a population of 5.3 million, the ninth-largest metropolitan area in the country.

the reason why i write this, when i read the sentence, i was curious as to which cities were higher. maybe someone else shares this thought?

just bringing it up, it doesnt have to be done, but it would seem correct to add it. thanks for your time, have a nice day!! Mackdiesel5 (talk) 17:56, 16 December 2009 (UTC)

I added the link. APK whisper in my ear 00:10, 17 December 2009 (UTC)
thanks. i appreciate it. MACKDIESEL5 (talk) 01:11, 17 December 2009 (UTC)

D.C. delegate

This article should clarify that the District of Columbia has a delegate in the House of Representatives —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 03:47, 28 December 2009 (UTC)

It's clarified.
The lead mentions the delegate: "The District has a non-voting at-large Congressional delegate, but no senators."
The Federal representation and taxation section goes into further detail: "Citizens of the District of Columbia have no voting representation in Congress. They are represented in the House of Representatives by a non-voting delegate, Eleanor Holmes Norton (D-D.C. At-Large), who may sit on committees, participate in debate, and introduce legislation, but cannot vote on the House floor. D.C. has no representation in the United States Senate."
APK whisper in my ear 03:54, 28 December 2009 (UTC)

Crime Rate

OMG, I can't believe Washington was known as the murder capital of the U.S In the 1990's!

Why do you think there was this much crime in Washington?

Warmunger (talk) 23:21, 1 January 2010 (UTC)

I don't know, and I lived there at the time. This is, however, not really the place to ask; if you want to find out, check the reference desk. This talk page is only to improve the article. --Golbez (talk) 23:54, 1 January 2010 (UTC)

By 2009, the annual murder count in the city had declined to 143.

should replace "By 2006, the annual murder count in the city had declined to 169." JuliusHibbert (talk) 21:19, 5 January 2010 (UTC)

Thanks for the note. I have made the update. Best, epicAdam(talk) 01:11, 6 January 2010 (UTC)

Reference in article to Medicare is incorrect

It should be Medicaid. I don't know how to make the change though.

Thanks! (talk) 16:47, 12 February 2010 (UTC)

Update reference to Same-Sex Marriage...

Article appears locked... paragraph referring to LGBT Demographics need to be corrected...

As of March 3, 2010 Same-Sex Marriages ARE performed in Washington D.C.

for reference... per the associated Press...

Obviously there are details to the story, including a quick (and failed) trip to the supreme court.. but in short one factual item that needs to be changed...

Ctroutwi (talk) 11:59, 3 March 2010 (UTC)

I have updated the article to reflect that the same-sex marriage law has come into force. Any details about the law should fall to the sub-article Recognition of same-sex unions in the District of Columbia. Best, epicAdam(talk) 14:27, 3 March 2010 (UTC)

what are the official seasons in DC?

there is reference to variations in spring, etc, but no word on when those seasons actually occur. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 14:58, 5 May 2010 (UTC)

There are several ways to designate when seasons begin and end. Nothing is official. See season. —D. Monack talk 23:50, 5 May 2010 (UTC)

Medical marijuana

I just undid User:Corker1's inclusion of the medical marijuana statute because I believe it's premature to put something into the main article that hasn't even been signed or passed the 30-day Congressional review period. However, I would like the opinion of other editors as to whether this should be included at all. After doing a quick check, none of the places that legalized medical marijuana mention it in the state articles, not sure why it's worth a mention here. Best, epicAdam(talk) 22:50, 5 May 2010 (UTC)

Agreed; a law should only be mentioned when it actually becomes law. --Golbez (talk) 23:28, 5 May 2010 (UTC)
Mayor Fenty has repeatedly stated that he supports this legislation. It is therefore virtually certain that he will sign the bill or that the Council will override a highly unlikely veto. Most importantly, this controversial bill is of sufficient general interest for a main Wikipedia article to describe it before it finally becomes law or before someone in Congress tries to override it.Corker1 (talk) 23:45, 5 May 2010 (UTC)
I disagree. It's news, not encyclopedic fact. Let's wait until it's real, and not just someone's promise. JohnInDC (talk) 00:23, 6 May 2010 (UTC)
"virtually certain" still falls under WP:CRYSTAL. --Golbez (talk) 00:47, 6 May 2010 (UTC)
Even if this does become law, though, is it worth a mention here? Like I indicated in the initial post, no other article mentions the medical marijuana law. I'm not sure that this law is of sufficient public interest... the law's passage has received (as far as I can tell) no national coverage and has essentially be relegated to a passing local story. Indeed, I would argue that DC's 5-cent plastic bag fee has garnered far more public attention than this relatively innocuous law. Best, epicAdam(talk) 04:16, 6 May 2010 (UTC)
Well, let's tease this out a bit. Same-sex marriage is in the article. Is coverage and attention that different? (I'm asking - I don't know.) JohnInDC (talk) 10:34, 6 May 2010 (UTC)
I think it's a bit different. The gay marriage issue is discussed as a part of the District's demographics, chiefly in relation to the city's very high percentage of gay and lesbian residents. Same-sex marriage is also mentioned in all the state articles where it exists. This is probably because the issue isn't just controversial but rather relates to a larger issue about a place's population, culture, politics, beliefs, etc. The medical marijuana information, as included, just seems to me like a piece of trivia thrown into the health and education section with little relation to anything else. Best, epicAdam(talk) 13:07, 6 May 2010 (UTC)
I agree that the cultural shift reflected in same-sex marriage is much more substantial than medical marijuana, and fits into a larger national discussion. I also agree that the article should avoid listing various local legal requirements just for the sake of listing them (your 5-cent bag law is a good example). On the whole I share your sense about the place of medical marijuana in the grand scheme of things too - let's see what others have to say. JohnInDC (talk) 13:31, 6 May 2010 (UTC)
Anyone who believes that medical marijauna laws are "relatively innocuous" should read the referenced Washington Post article, which briefly describes the provisions and effects of such a law in California. (Many other articles describe the effects of the California law in more detail.) If such laws were actually "relatively innocuous", relevant federal agencies would support them and would advocate their enactment at the federal level. For such reasons, state and local medical marijuana laws are suitable subjects for Wikipedia articles relevant to those jurisdictions. Corker1 (talk) 17:21, 6 May 2010 (UTC)
I suppose I'd be more enthusiastic about this if, instead of Washington Post articles about the California law, we had LA Times articles about the Washington, DC law - JohnInDC (talk) 17:31, 6 May 2010 (UTC)
I didn't mean that at the law is frivolous, but that I don't believe it warrants mention here. Many similar health laws and ordinances have various "provisions and effects": needle exchanges, cigarette and soda taxes, alcohol regulations, methadone clinics, etc. The issue is that this article is about the city itself, not really what goes on in the city. What does the fact that medical marijuana would be legal in a limited setting say about Washington itself? In my opinion, not much. That's also probably the reason it hasn't been mentioned in any other article from Alaska to Vermont. Best, epicAdam(talk) 17:39, 6 May 2010 (UTC)
Re: Comment by User:JohnInDC: On May 4, 2010, The LA Times website had an article about the D.C. Council's passage of the medical marijuana bill. Corker1 (talk) 19:31, 7 May 2010 (UTC)
Weellll - they ran a 5 sentence AP story. I had somewhat more substantial interest (with accompanying original coverage) in mind. Indeed that kind of perfunctory coverage underscores, rather than undermines, my point. JohnInDC (talk) 20:01, 7 May 2010 (UTC)
Just need to agree that even if the bill does pass, there's just not a place for it here. While I see that it might be tangentially related to government, and maybe it could go in "Education and health care", this article, like most city articles, doesn't have a politics section, which is where medical marijuana might make sense. That absence is something to think about for a later date.-- Patrick {oѺ} 20:53, 7 May 2010 (UTC)

Washington State?

I note that the article for Washington State says its correct name is the State (capitalized) of Washington. Should "state" be capitalized in the lead section here where used in conjunction with Washington (the state)? Thanks, RadioBroadcast (talk) 03:24, 19 May 2010 (UTC)

I could be wrong, but the phrase "U.S. state of ..." doesn't include capitalization of state. The phrase "State of ..." (without U.S.) may or may not include capitalization of state. I hope that makes sense. APK whisper in my ear 03:42, 19 May 2010 (UTC)

Pending changes

This article is one of a small number (about 100) selected for the first week of the trial of the Wikipedia:Pending Changes system on the English language Wikipedia. All the articles listed at Wikipedia:Pending changes/Queue are being considered for level 1 pending changes protection.

The following request appears on that page:

However with only a few hours to go, comments have only been made on two of the pages.

Please update the Queue page as appropriate.

Note that I am not involved in this project any more than any other editor, just posting these notes since it is quite a big change, potentially.

Regards, Rich Farmbrough, 20:48, 15 June 2010 (UTC).

Named for?

User:DKroot added a "named for" attribute to the infobox. I hadn't seen that particular attribute before, but I'm wondering what should go in there. Washington is certainly named for George Washington, but then do we have to include Columbia (name) in respect to the District of Columbia? Both are "co-official" (best way I can think to describe it), so it seems strange to leave one out. Best, epicAdam(talk) 19:44, 17 June 2010 (UTC)

No, I don't think so we need Columbia. When it was named, Columbia meant the same as America, so its just kind of like saying "District of America" as I understand it. So its not really named for the personification.-- Patrick {oѺ} 20:55, 17 June 2010 (UTC)
I agree with Patrick. APK whisper in my ear 20:58, 17 June 2010 (UTC)

Territory/District in first paragraph

The first paragraph says that the district was known as the "Territory of Columbia" until 1871, which it became known as the "District of Columbia." But District of Columbia voting rights says that it (it being the 10-mile square) was only the Territory until 1801, when it (still the 10-mile square) became the District. The 1871 act collapsed Washington and Georgetown into 68-square-mile area that remained.

Are we in agreement on this? Jesuschex (talk) 18:24, 4 July 2010 (UTC)

The words "territory" and "district" where used interchangeably for most of the city's early history even after 1801. I don't see where the article on D.C. voting rights makes any claim to the contrary. The only confusion that may arise is that the 1871 Organic Act incorporated the whole of the District ("collapsing", as you say, Washington and Georgetown into the larger area) as a single municipality with an official territorial government; however, the Act does codify the legal name of the municipality as the "District of Columbia". It is for this reason that the D.C. seal has the date "1871", the year that the entirety of the District was constituted under a single government. I hope this alleviates some amount of the confusion. Best, epicAdam(talk) 02:24, 5 July 2010 (UTC)
I should have been more specific about the voting rights article. I was actually referring to the District of Columbia Organic Act of 1801, which, obviously, refers to it as District. The legislation is here (final couple of lines on the page, then a few more pages). DC's seal has "1871" because that's when the current municipality was formed. Jesuschex (talk) 23:30, 6 July 2010 (UTC)
Ah. I see what you're getting at. Like I said above, the terms "territory" and "district" were indeed used pretty interchangeably. The text of the above-linked 1801 act does say "District of Columbia" but various legislative documents continue to refer to the "Territory of Columbia" well into the mid-19th century, such as this example from the same Library of Congress catalog: [1]. However, I have changed the first paragraph of this article to remove the reference to "the Territory of Columbia" and hopefully make the distinction clearer for readers. Best, epicAdam(talk) 00:27, 7 July 2010 (UTC)

Inspirations for Washington DC's layout

I suggest adding a sentence similar to the one in bold print to the section "Cityscape". The source for this is a letter by Thomas Jefferson to George Washington, a copy of which can be found here:

Washington, D.C. is a planned city. The design for the City of Washington was largely the work of Pierre (Peter) Charles L’Enfant, a French-born architect, engineer, and city planner who first arrived in the colonies as a military engineer with Major General Lafayette during the American Revolutionary War. In 1791, President Washington commissioned L'Enfant to plan the layout of the new capital city. To fuel his inspiration, Thomas Jefferson provided L'Enfant with various city maps, which he had brought from his journey to Europe in 1788. The maps included Frankfurt, Karlsruhe, Amsterdam, Paris, Orléans, Turin and Milan. L'Enfant's plan was modeled in the Baroque style and incorporated avenues radiating out from rectangles, providing room for open space and landscaping. His design also envisioned a garden-lined "grand avenue" approximately 1 mile (1.6 km) in length and 400 feet (120 m) wide in the area that is now the National Mall.

UG at enwiki (talk) 14:02, 16 July 2010 (UTC)

I inserted a sentence with the appropriate citation, though I shortened it a bit. Next time, however, just be bold and jump right in! Best, epicAdam(talk) 16:06, 16 July 2010 (UTC)
Thanks, epicAdam! Just wanted to see if others think that is valuable information first. Will add "Karlsruhe" to your sentence though as it has been claimed that this city has been a particular inspiration for Washington DC (Similar layout, cp. [1], p. 15). However, as this is not really verifiable, I would not further elaborate on this fact in the article. UG at enwiki (talk) 22:16, 16 July 2010 (UTC)
Sure thing. I think the fact that L'Enfant had Jefferson bring back plans of some of the most (in my opinion) beautiful European cities to use in the design of Washington is interesting and certainly relates to the design of the city. Best, epicAdam(talk) 12:50, 17 July 2010 (UTC)


"Washington, D.C. (pronounced /ˈwɒʃɪŋtən ˌdiːˈsiː/, WOSH-ing-tən DEE-SEE), formally the District of Columbia and commonly referred to as Washington, the District, or simply D.C., is the capital of the United States, founded on July 16, 1790. Article One of the United States Constitution provides for a federal district, distinct from the states, to serve as the permanent national capital."

Why does this say "formally the District of Colombia"? Aren't the city of Washington and the District separate things? Like "Philadelphia, PA". (talk) 09:59, 18 July 2010 (UTC)

The short answer is no. This has been discussed more than once before. Here are a couple of archive links: Talk:Washington,_D.C./Archive_4#Washington_or_District; Talk:Washington,_D.C./Archive_4#District_of_Columbia. JohnInDC (talk) 11:19, 18 July 2010 (UTC)

D.C. vs DC

Since the District of Columbia functions as a state, it should be abbreviated as one, i.e. without periods. I would have changed it on here myself but there are 171 uses of it on this page. I believe it is also incorrect on many other wikipedia pages. I'd like to know anyone's reasoning for using periods in the first place. Thanks. $cammer (talk) 18:16, 22 August 2010 (UTC)

Whether the District of Columbia functions as a state isn't particularly relevant. State names are often abbreviated with punctuation, especially the two-name places. In any event, changing the entire page would be a pointless exercise in orthography. As soon as the punctuation is changed, another editor will come by and change it back. Writing "D.C." with punctuation reflects current consensus; I see no reason to change it. Best, epicAdam(talk) 18:42, 22 August 2010 (UTC)
yes. covered somewhere in Archives, though I really do not care since you did not open a lengthy discussion. ---何献龙4993 (talk) 20:47, 30 August 2010 (UTC)
Postal abbreviations are not the beginning and the end of all things. The AP, for example, uses "Calif.", "N.Y.", etc. in their abbreviations. --Golbez (talk) 21:01, 30 August 2010 (UTC)

Abolition of Slavery

I always thought that one thing that really increased the African-American population in the District of Columbia was the combination of the abolition of slavery before the Civil War and the Union Army's protection of the District of Columbia. This article states that fact. But in the paragraph where these facts are given, the sources really don't back up that fact. It appears the both citations are "This Day in History" articles from the Library of Congress. Can someone provide better sources? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 17:36, 5 September 2010 (UTC)

Transit Ridership

Doesn't Jersey City, NJ have a higher transit ridership rate? DC is listed as #2 for some reason. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 02:22, 7 October 2010 (UTC)

Inclusion of additional climate classification data

Hi. I restored the climate data section for the following reasons:

  1. I cannot find any additional information on "Bioclime" classification supporting the statement that D.C. has a "Temperate Continental Climate". The cited website doesn't say what "Teco" even means. In addition, as far as I can tell, this is climate classification scheme is based on plant vegetation patterns, not the standard climatic data using temperature and precipitation.
  2. The Trewartha map cited to is not sufficient as a source. As discussed prior, maps like this do not provide enough detail to show the particular climate classification for the area the size of a city. Complicating factors, such as urban heat islands, often create conditions different from the surrounding area. If there is a source that explicitly shows Washington to be in a certain zone, please provide it so that it can be re-added.

If any other editors wish to chime in on this, please do. Best, epicAdam(talk) 15:41, 16 October 2010 (UTC)

I somewhat discussed this with User:Koppenlady on her talk page。At the very least, I object to placing the Trewartha before the Koppen, because according to maps as well as NOAA data, DC is not close to failing to be solidly classified as Cfa (i.e. January > 0 ℃), unlike the Phila. and NY metro areas. at the very least, continental at DC's latitude would be more like higher elevations and places between the Rockies and the Appalachians. --HXL 何献龙 17:04, 16 October 2010 (UTC)



I am kinda new to Wikipedia. I am trying to translate the Washington D.C. article in Bulgarian language. I suppose if the article is picked to be the best then this means the information in it is verified, so I won't have to do this too.

I began to check the references links (not all yet) and one of them is not working which is this:

I searched in google and found this: --NadyaD (talk) 09:21, 26 October 2010 (UTC)

After skimming through the source NadyaD found, I didn't see the information that's stated in the article, so this will definitely need a new source. upstateNYer 17:59, 28 November 2010 (UTC)
I replaced the link with one that has a more general historical overview of the Post and I removed the line about the editions - not sure where that came from. Best, epicAdam(talk) 18:29, 28 November 2010 (UTC)

Edit request from JMC321, 28 November 2010

{{edit semi-protected}} In the Washington, DC page under Education, please change the listing of universities "Many notable private universities are located in Washington, including George Washington University (GW), Georgetown University (GU), American University (AU), the Catholic University of America (CUA), Howard University, Gallaudet University, and the Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS)." to EITHER "Georgetown University (1789), George Washington University (1821), Gallaudet University (1864), Howard University (1867), the Catholic University of America (1887), American University (1893), and the Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies (1943)." OR please order them alphabetically. This request is because the current order is based on no logical prioritization, which is abnormal for an encyclopedic listing. Thank you. -JMC321

JMC321 (talk) 12:38, 28 November 2010 (UTC)

Hi JMC321, I have reordered the list in alphabetical order. Best, epicAdam(talk) 16:19, 28 November 2010 (UTC)

Sports Championships

The Redskins are 5-time NFL champions. The Super Bowl has only been around since 1967 (after the 1966 season). The NFL has been around since 1920. The Redskins were NFL champions in 1937 and 1942. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 21:16, 30 November 2010 (UTC)

Good catch. I've made the update. Best, epicAdam(talk) 23:29, 30 November 2010 (UTC)

What about the fact the roads form a pentagram?

What about it? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 13:40, 3 December 2010 (UTC)

That's covered at Witchipedia. JohnInDC (talk) 13:50, 3 December 2010 (UTC)
Rumor has it the roads of many cities form the shape of a cross :o --Golbez (talk) 14:14, 3 December 2010 (UTC)
You mean the vague, partial pentagram that I found after two minutes of straining and that is probably an inevitable result of diagonal avenues crisscrossing everywhere? Zazaban (talk) 21:18, 7 March 2011 (UTC)


If the city is formally known as District of Columbia shouldn't the article be called that and the article start by mentioning its colloquial name? Mnealon (talk) 02:47, 9 December 2010 (UTC)

Hi Mnealon. The article title is appropriate per WP:COMMONNAME. Best, epicAdam(talk) 16:14, 11 December 2010 (UTC)

Revision to lead

Hi All. I decided to be bold and change up the wording in the lead. The introduction had bothered me for quite awhile as I thought the writing was a little too technocratic for the average reader. I have instead revised the text to explicit explain the relationship of the District to the U.S. states (instead of the vague appositive "distinct from the states") as well as better explain what happened with the 1871 Organic Act. Hopefully this will be more useful and straight-forward to casual readers who are likely unfamiliar with all the details surrounding the District's legal status, etc. I welcome comments from other editors. Best, epicAdam(talk) 17:04, 11 December 2010 (UTC)

I approve. Looks good. upstateNYer 17:46, 11 December 2010 (UTC)

International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (“ICCPR”).

Congress has in fact acted in partial compliance with its obligations under the ICCPR when, in 1961, just a few years after the United Nations first ratified the ICCPR, it amended our fundamental charter to allow the United States citizens who reside in the District of Columbia to vote for the Executive offices.   See U.S. Const. amend.   XXIII.51  Indeed, a bill is now pending in Congress that would treat the District of Columbia as “a congressional district for purposes of representation in the House of Representatives,” and permit United States citizens residing in the capitol to vote for members of the House of Representatives.   See District of Columbia House Voting Rights Act, S. 160, 111th Cong. (passed by Senate, February 26, 2009) (2009).52  

Reference: GREGORIO IGARTÚA ET AL v. UNITED STATES OF AMERICA ET AL (IGARTUA IV) --Seablade (talk) 05:56, 18 December 2010 (UTC)

Are you suggesting some kind of change to the article? --Golbez (talk) 06:54, 18 December 2010 (UTC)

Isn't the map wrong?

I thought that DC was Diamond shaped, and crossed OVER the Potomac. To me, that means the maps used in the article must be wrong. What's the fact of the situation? LP-mn (talk) 02:24, 10 January 2011 (UTC)

It started as a diamond (well, square on its point) and crossed the Potomac but some number of years ago the cross-Potomac part was retroceded to Virginia. I'm sure this is covered somewhere in the article. In any case the maps are right. JohnInDC (talk) 02:35, 10 January 2011 (UTC)

Yes, from my understanding both Maryland and Virginia gave up very small portions of their land to create what would become the capital city of Washington, DC. Maryland and Virginia each gave one-half of what was to become a diamond-shaped city. As the federal government began constructing its offices and buildings, most of them were erected on the eastern side of the diamond, the land Maryland offered. The western half, the land Virginia offered, was more residental-like and saw much less federal buildings. Virginia eventually asked if the land could be returned, and the federal government obliged. If you look at the shape of Arlington County, Virginia on a map, you can see it basically makes the other half of the diamond. -Personally, I think the federal government should have kept it; Washington could use the land area now. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 01:53, 17 January 2011 (UTC)

Small Change

Sorry, don't have editing privileges, but where non-profits are mentioned, it should link to,_D.C.

right? Thanks! ~Saraabi (talk) 20:53, 26 May 2011 (UTC)

Hi Saraabi. I added the link to the economy section. Thanks, -epicAdam(talk) 23:24, 26 May 2011 (UTC)

Official name

This article appears to contend, or at least imply, that "Washington" is some kind of unofficial name that happens to be in popular use. I understand that for governmental purposes, it is just the "District of Columbia," but the city which comprises all of the District is officially named Washington. I think the intro needs to be reworded. john k (talk) 19:51, 21 June 2011 (UTC)

There word "official" is not used anywhere in the lead. The city as a whole is "Washington, D.C." That's clear on the driver's licenses, vehicle plates, signage, etc. It's not any more or less official than "District of Columbia", which is primarily used in formal legal situations. But it also commonly called just Washington (without the D.C.), the District, or D.C. exactly as described. How would you reword it? — Preceding unsigned comment added by Epicadam (talkcontribs)
A made a wording change to the lead and history section to clarify what I think John K had an issue with. Let me know if that works. Best, epicAdam(talk) 17:14, 24 June 2011 (UTC)
I still don't like the implication that "Washington, D.C." is an informal name. It is not. john k (talk) 05:42, 27 June 2011 (UTC)
I don't get the same impression that "Washington, D.C." is somehow unofficial simply because "District of Columbia" is called the formal name, which it is...the 1871 Act makes that clear. I really don't know how else to accurately word this without going into a paragraph-long explanation. Best, epicAdam(talk) 13:24, 27 June 2011 (UTC)

Edit request from, 16 July 2011

please change "The initial shape of the federal district was a square measuring 10 miles (16 km) on each side"


"The initial shape of the federal district was a diamond measuring 10 miles (16 km) on each side" (talk) 19:08, 16 July 2011 (UTC)

I'm with you on that one friend but we've been around the block already and "square" it stays. Talk:Washington,_D.C./Archive_3#Diamond_vs._square. JohnInDC (talk) 19:13, 16 July 2011 (UTC)
X mark.svg Not done seems more of a dispute over inclusion than request. Monkeymanman (talk) 21:01, 16 July 2011 (UTC)

Anthem of the District of Columbia

Please refrain from removing the notation on the march Our Nation's Capital from the section Performing arts and music. Mention of the existence of an official city anthem is necessary in a section on the city's music history, as well as in any section on symbols of the city. It is particularly relevant as the march was written in the city by the leader of a military band based in the city. - Ken keisel (talk) 21:21, 22 July 2011 (UTC)

I have to say that it seems like a pretty collateral fact to me, and not well suited to the "performing arts" section, into which it seems rather shoehorned. It seems closer to trivia to me than something that needs to be included in the main article on the District. Others' thoughts? JohnInDC (talk) 22:35, 22 July 2011 (UTC)
If someone wants to create a section listing all of the "Official ___ of The District of Columbia" then it would fit there nicely, but until then it belongs in the section on music. It should be noted that the next sentence describes the Kennedy Center. The author of "Our Nation's Capital" also wrote "The National Cultural Center March" for the fundraising and opening of the Kennedy Center. Interesting how it all ties together. - Ken keisel (talk) 22:41, 22 July 2011 (UTC)
The thin sourcing also suggests that this honor, though official, is not particularly significant in the District's history. JohnInDC (talk) 22:55, 22 July 2011 (UTC)
I agree with a JohnInDC. The information is WP:TRIVIA at best and not particularly relevant to understanding the District. The article List of District of Columbia symbols includes this type of information and that's where it should be included with the new source. Best, epicAdam(talk) 23:52, 22 July 2011 (UTC)
JohnInDC please explain how the Washington Post is a "thin source"? It would seem to me that this is a POV statement. - Ken keisel (talk) 17:57, 23 July 2011 (UTC)
I meant "thin" in the sense of "spare", not "unreliable". I don't dispute that at some point in time, for some reason, this march was declared to be the "official" march of the District of Columbia. The Post's obituary is reliable enough to establish that. But the single source doesn't persuade me that the march, or the honorific bestowed upon it, is in any way significant. If there were more references, if there were sources to indicate that the march was at least reasonably well-known among people who might be in a position to play it from time to time (local musicians, local music directors for example) then it might be different. As it is it just seems like a factoid, a random bit of information. JohnInDC (talk) 18:56, 23 July 2011 (UTC)
If you look again you will see that there are two references listed. Both state that the march is the official march, or anthem of the District of Columbia. Beyond that there is no presidence for any of us to second-guess the administration that declared it official. Any attempt by you or I to make it more or less important is merely opinion. Whither or not it has been played in the last year is irrelevant to its status in connection to the city. - Ken keisel (talk) 22:14, 23 July 2011 (UTC)
JohnInDC you are deleting this information because neither you or your friends remember the Washington D.C. anthem 'Our Nation's Capital'. Your memory doesn't trump it's mention in 'The Washington Post', and other sources. I am issuing a warning that further deletion will reault in turning this over to an administrator for review, which will likely lock the article for several days while they review the basis for your challenge. - Ken keisel (talk) 20:06, 25 July 2011 (UTC)
Ken, no one here is disputing the reliability of the sources you are providing. There is lots of information about the District of Columbia that could be included in this article. However, it is not possible to do so. It is for this reason that what is included in the main article is restricted to only the most important facts about the city that the average casual reader would be interested in. Other more-detailed information is often left to be included on the various sub-articles even if it's cited to reliable sources. While the fact that the city has a march written by a US Navy Band director may be interesting to some, JohnInDC and I are of the belief that the information is not crucial to the understanding of Washington, D.C., as a whole. It is for this same reason that other official symbols such as the District's official bird and official tree aren't mentioned here. It may be interesting to some, but it largely ceremonial and likely not important to the vast majority of readers who are coming to this page to gain a broad understanding about the city. That is not an attack on you or LCDR Mitchell or the role of the US Navy Band; it is purely an editorial decision on what should be reasonably included in one of the best articles on Wikipedia. Best, epicAdam(talk) 20:21, 25 July 2011 (UTC)
Adam expresses the point better than I was about to, and I concur. JohnInDC (talk) 20:35, 25 July 2011 (UTC)
I think if Washington, D.C. had more symbols, then it might be reasonable to list this among them. All the U.S. state articles do for example have a section to list thier state song, state bird, state amphibian, et cetera. So while I enjoy a good rickey, I don't think either it or this march need to be mentioned at the moment. I do think though that this gets at whether you think of D.C. as more like a state or like a city, and therefore to which Wikipedia conventions it should adhere.-- Patrick, oѺ 20:55, 25 July 2011 (UTC)
We're not talking about symbols here. This is a discussion about including three sentences about the United States Navy Band in a manner that is relevant to the history of the city. There already existed in the article several sentences about the United States Marine Corp Band and one of its leaders. The Navy Band was formed and based in the District of Columbia, just like the Marine Corp Band. I have added information about the Navy Band's role in the city that pairs nicely with the previous information about the Marine Corps Band. I have also mentioned a prominent Navy Band leader, to make the description comperable to the description of the Marine Corp Band, and to show no favoritism to one branch or the other. Both bands have played an equally important part in the city's history, and it is appropriate that comperable descriptions be made for each. - Ken keisel (talk) 21:19, 25 July 2011 (UTC)
This discussion was originally about including a mention of "Our Nation's Capital" as the "official march" of the District of Columbia. The focus seems to have shifted somewhat now, however. As to this new issue (ensuring parity in details for the Marine and Navy bands), it is perfectly appropriate to include a passing mention of but one of the many leaders of the Marine Band, John Philip Sousa - Washington, DC, native and perhaps the best-known American composer of marches - and at the same time omit specific mention of one of the many leaders of the Navy Band, Anthony Mitchell. The underlying rationale is the same for this matter as for the original one; as Adam explained above, there are many facts that could be included in this article, yet which are not. It's not favoritism or bias to omit Commander Mitchell but instead just concern for maintaining a high-quality article. JohnInDC (talk) 21:54, 25 July 2011 (UTC)
I concur with JohnInDC. The focus appears to have shifted somewhat. I don't mean to degrade LCDR Mitchell and his accomplishments, but every person mentioned in this article is a person of supreme importance. To use another example, the article mentions the Washington National Opera but not its world-renowned director Plácido Domingo. The reason? Plácido Domingo is clearly a notable person but he's not critical in understanding Washington as a place. However, any historian reading a section on Music in Washington, D.C., would surely have been shocked to see no mention of John Phillips Sousa. It is becoming rather clear to me that the impetus for this discussion was less about improving this article and more about ensuring that a link to a page you created is enshrined on one of the highest-trafficked pages on Wikipedia. -epicAdam(talk) 22:24, 25 July 2011 (UTC)

Strikes me as too much info about USMC band; there's a separate article which discusses Sousa and it's of only passing relevance to D.C. Gerardw (talk) 22:26, 25 July 2011 (UTC)

As I said above, I think an article would be incomplete without a mention of a Washington-native whose home is a national landmark. I'm not sure Sousa's relevance to D.C. could ever be described as "passing". Best, epicAdam(talk) 22:39, 25 July 2011 (UTC)
Do you have a citation for that opinion? Gerardw (talk) 00:02, 26 July 2011 (UTC)
I'm not sure what you're asking for - a citation that Sousa is important to the District and warrants inclusion in the DC article? - but for what it's worth, I agree with Adam. JohnInDC (talk) 00:06, 26 July 2011 (UTC)
Yes, I am asking for a citation that Sousa is important to the District and warrants inclusion in the DC article. Gerardw (talk) 00:12, 26 July 2011 (UTC)
Hm. Well, I don't think you're going to find Wikipedia editorial decisions supported by traditional reliable sources. Most of those decisions are - to the extent they require "sources" - decided by consensus. I agree with Adam, for the reasons he laid out, that Sousa is an important part of DC musical history. Not a huge part - a sentence's worth in this article - but an important part. Born here, worked here, perhaps the best known American composer of marches, his house is a national landmark - it's quite a series of reasons. JohnInDC (talk) 00:18, 26 July 2011 (UTC)
I would hope that the John Philip Sousa Junior High School or John Philip Sousa Bridge would be good enough to assert Sousa's prominence in D.C. The DC Government also has a neighborhood guide that details Sousa's home and upbringing in the Capitol Hill neighborhood. In addition, when the DC Arts Commission recently selected historical murals in each DC ward, Capitol Hill chose Sousa. The point is that Sousa is a very notable native son, who also happened to direct the Marine Band. I'm not sure anyone there is one single source that declares definitively that Sousa "is important to DC" but a preponderance of evidence shows that D.C. considers him to be a prominent figure in the city's history. However, if the inclusion of Sousa is truly causing so much of controversy, I would be okay with removing reference to him; though I think it would be a mistake. Best, epicAdam(talk) 01:31, 26 July 2011 (UTC)
The poit that JohnInDC is trying to avoid is that he is ommitting all reference to the Navy Band's history in the Washington D.C. area. This has nothing to do with bandleaders (though JohnInDC has just blanked the page on the composer of the District's anthem again), it has to do with providing a balanced description of both bands. The version JohnInDC is supporting doesn't do that. It describes the Marine Corps Band in detail, and only mentions where the Navy Band is based. Since both bands have extensive histories in the D.C. area there should be a balanced description of them both. - Ken keisel (talk) 20:09, 26 July 2011 (UTC)
I'm sorry, I don't understand. There is a sentence about the Marine Band, saying where it is located and when it was founded. There is a sentence about the Navy Band, saying where it is located and when it was founded. In between is a sentence about John Philip Sousa. Other than the sentence about Sousa (discussed above), the coverage is identical. (As for LCDR Anthony A. Mitchell USN - the page as it exists was just a reorganization of the Washington Post obituary, and as such, an obvious copyright violation.) JohnInDC (talk) 20:26, 26 July 2011 (UTC)

Population comparisons

Washington DC is a federal district. Assuming that it is neither city nor state, it technically has no peer within the United States, and, strictly speaking I suppose its population should be compared to nothing at all in the infobox. Even if it is not a "city", it has the dimensions of one and offering a ranking among cities - which I haven't checked but I bet is sourced all over the place - is a useful metric for giving a quick sense of its size, far more than ranking it among the states which really accomplishes nothing except to raise the question in the mind of the reader, "hm, I wonder what state has fewer residents than DC?" It's almost a setup for a trivia question. The upshot is that I think the infobox should stay as it was, namely, ranking DC's population among cities, and leaving states out. JohnInDC (talk) 15:08, 1 August 2011 (UTC)

Here is the US Census Department ranking city size in the US: . JohnInDC (talk) 15:10, 1 August 2011 (UTC)
(In, oops, 1800. Let me find a better one.) JohnInDC (talk) 15:21, 1 August 2011 (UTC)
I couldn't put my finger quickly on a simple tabulation for 2010 or 2000 but here's the parent page for the foregoing link, which shows tallies back for a couple hundred years, and consisently lists Washington DC among the cities: JohnInDC (talk) 15:28, 1 August 2011 (UTC)
Census listing by state, with DC on the list but its ranking as "NA": JohnInDC (talk) 15:14, 1 August 2011 (UTC) It may be worth saying in the article, if it is not already there, that if it were considered as a state, DC's population would be 50th of 51; but that sort of qualified comparison seems a bit much to squeeze into an infobox. JohnInDC (talk) 15:14, 1 August 2011 (UTC)

I looked into how other federal districts are presented to get ideas. Australia has separate articles for Canberra and the Australian Capital Territory, each with its rank among cities and states, respectively, but there is area in the ACT that's outside Canberra. On the other hand, Mexico City is a single coterminous city and federal district, so it's a direct equivalent of Washington, D.C. The infobox there uses population_rank to show its rank among states. There's no mention in the infobox of its rank among cities. For what it's worth, the Template:Infobox settlement parameter description says to use it for the population "as ranked within its parent sub-division"—in this case, the nation.

Although the District of Columbia is like a city in many ways, it is, like states, directly under the nation in both geographical and political hierarchy. The only differences are in representation and internal governance. I understand that the District has a smaller area than any state, but there's no expectation that states are of a uniform geographical size: Alaska is bigger than 21 other states combined. Finally, the District is assigned electors in the Electoral College, where comparative population with the states is the whole point.

Anyway, I did like the population_rank field that Mexico City used, so I put the rank there. I acknowledge your points about it being useful to include the population among cities, too, so I added that as a parenthetical in the population_rank. – Blahblah29 (talk) 15:04, 2 August 2011 (UTC)

Well, now I think the infobox borders on the incoherent. I doubt that one person in one hundred (outside Washington DC anyhow) will understand that "50" refers to DC's ranking among states, inasmuch as it is not a State at all. (Not to mention that for the sake of consistency, Wyoming's infobox really should now rank it as 51st out of 50.) The comparison to Mexico City, while superficially appealing, is inapt inasmuch as the DF appears to enjoy - in contrast to DC - actual legislative representation at the Federal level. While Mexico City is like Washington a federal district and a city, it also appears to have the very hallmarks of statehood that Washington, DC, lacks. Calling DC a State, and comparing it to States when it is not, is in addition to being confusing rather than enlightening, is unsourced (the wikilinked page does not assign it a number, nor does the Census) *and* seems like a pretty clear POV statement of what some would like the truth to be rather than what the truth is. In the spirit of collegial editing I will leave it as is for the time being to see what other editors may have to say. But to sum up I think the edit is confusing, incorrect, and needs to be reverted. JohnInDC (talk) 15:48, 2 August 2011 (UTC)
I'd add that the Template infobox instructions seem to be routinely ignored in the service of utility. A quick look at US cities shows that cities are ranked not within their parent subdivisions (states), but rather within the US. Detroit, Chicago, Dallas, Tallahassee, Los Angeles are just a few examples. JohnInDC (talk) 16:03, 2 August 2011 (UTC)
I agree with JohnInDC. It makes little sense to rank the District among the states, as it is not one. The District is routinely and appropriately left off state rankings; when D.C. is cited it's often only included as a comparison without a "rank". The same nuanced information can be explained in the demographics section without confusing readers looking at the infobox. Best, epicAdam(talk) 16:13, 2 August 2011 (UTC)
I don't get the distinction about legislative representation in Mexico City–although the District doesn't have the same rights as a state in Congress, it does have the same rights in the Electoral College. But again, that's my point: being state-like from the perspective of being a segment of the U.S. population is quite different from being state-like in representation. In looking at the Australian case, the ACT is like DC in that its laws can be overruled, but its population is ranked among Australian states. I understand DC is a unique place that's hard to categorize cleanly. In governmental matters, sometimes the District is lumped in with the territories, and sometimes it's treated like a state. (A case might be made for saying the District is 51st in population, after 49 states and Puerto Rico, though that would really cause further confusion.)
I realize that "50th" is a bit vague, and I think "50th among states, 24th among cities" would make it clear. It's obviously a gloss—the District is neither a state nor an incorporated city—but the average person treats it as both in most ways, and from the perspective of a quick summary in an infobox, some readers will be thinking in the context of state-like entities, and others will be thinking in the context of cities. –Blahblah29 (talk) 17:44, 2 August 2011 (UTC)
For what it's worth, the District is absolutely an incorporated city (see: District of Columbia Organic Act of 1871). The situation is very nuanced and cannot be accurately explained in an infobox. I believe it's more confusing to a casual reader to explain that the District is not a U.S. state but then go on and rank it among the 50 states. In any event, I think they statistics are rather pointless (as are most rankings of this type) and if anything should just all be removed. Best, epicAdam(talk) 18:02, 2 August 2011 (UTC)
The distinction from Mexico City is that, in the Mexican federal system, Mexico City appears to function for all intents and purposes as a state, despite its unique designation. So calling it a "state" is just a matter of nomenclature. Washington DC is not a state either nominally or functionally - it has Electoral College representation but nothing of actual substance in the House or Senate. In short DC is not a state and it isn't *like* a state, so there's no sense in calling it a state. Particularly in assigning it an actual numerical ranking among "state populations" when the sources themselves appear not to do it. The most that can be said is, "If DC were compared to states then it would be 50th out of 51" but that's a mouthful, not suitable for an infobox, and contra-factual to boot! JohnInDC (talk) 18:27, 2 August 2011 (UTC)
And - if as Adam points out - DC is in fact incorporated then DC *is* a city and is *not* a state, and the infobox is not simply wrestling with ambiguity but is flat-out wrong. JohnInDC (talk) 18:32, 2 August 2011 (UTC)
I see you switched it over, JohnInDC, and since you feel so strongly about it, that's fine. I still think that the District's being treated like a state in many ways (despite not being so in many others)—combined in this specific instance with its population being in the ballpark of state populations—make the ranking among states a useful and interesting thing to put in a quick population summary in the infobox, but ultimately, it's just four characters and nothing worth a protracted debate. Putting it in the main text allows for more context. – Blahblah29 (talk) 22:41, 3 August 2011 (UTC)
Well, I thought that this otherwise stray fact had no place in an infobox, which after all just summarizes basic facts and is not a good place for introducing nuanced or non-obvious concepts. It is better in the body of the article, though even in prose it remains a non sequitur. DC's "stateishness" is, I think, anything but obvious to most who would read the article. And so comparing DC to states - when it is not a state but instead only like a state (and then only in some, but not other, respects) - comes out of nowhere without some sort of predicate about why the comparison may be apt. You might almost as well compare DC's population to Luxembourg or Andorra (both of which it exceeds). Probably the fact is better included not in a raw discussion of demographics but instead wherever the statehood movement is discussed and the underlying assumptions elucidated a bit more. I may see if I can find a better place for it but in the meantime its presence in the text doesn't bug me nearly as much as in the infobox. JohnInDC (talk) 01:56, 4 August 2011 (UTC)
I have moved the info to the demographics section with a proper source to the Census Bureau. While comparing the city's population to to each state may be important to some, it hardly belongs in the lead. Placing such comparisons in the demographics section complements comparisons made in the economy section, etc. -epicAdam(talk) 06:14, 4 August 2011 (UTC)
Oh, I'm embarrassed; I had just looked at the diff and didn't notice the placement in the lead. I agree. JohnInDC (talk) 10:50, 4 August 2011 (UTC)

Edit request from, 4 August 2011

{{edit semi-protected}} In the "Sports" section, please change the statement "and the Washington Wizards has won a single championship" to "and in 1978, the Washington Bullets (former name of the Washington Wizards) won the city's only NBA championship" because the team was not called the Wizards at the time of the championship win. Sources of this information include "33 years ago: Washington Bullets' Big Three, Hayes, Unseld, Dandridge, won NBA title" Washington Examiner. June 7, 2011. Retrieved August 8, 2011. "Bullets Capture NBA Crown" Washington Post. June 8, 1978. Retrieved August 8, 2011. (talk) 17:45, 4 August 2011 (UTC)

yellow tickY Partly done GFOLEY FOUR!— 19:36, 4 August 2011 (UTC)

File:Duke Ellington Mural.jpg Nominated for Deletion

Image-x-generic.svg An image used in this article, File:Duke Ellington Mural.jpg, has been nominated for deletion at Wikimedia Commons in the following category: Deletion requests August 2011
What should I do?

Don't panic; a discussion will now take place over on Commons about whether to remove the file. This gives you an opportunity to contest the deletion, although please review Commons guidelines before doing so.

  • If the image is non-free then you may need to upload it to Wikipedia (Commons does not allow fair use)
  • If the image isn't freely licensed and there is no fair use rationale then it cannot be uploaded or used.

This notification is provided by a Bot --CommonsNotificationBot (talk) 19:16, 18 August 2011 (UTC)

Both images of the Duke Ellington mural have been tagged for deletion and are likely to be removed for copyright violation. I have instead included Duke Ellington's image on the D.C. quarter. Let me know what you think. Best, epicAdam(talk) 20:21, 18 August 2011 (UTC)

Dang, didn't think about that. I'm really not sure you should be able to copyright a street corner, but common sense has never been a defining feature of Wikimedia's copyright policy. I'll see if there's an alternative. Is File:True reformer building.jpg also going to be problematic?-- Patrick, oѺ 04:34, 19 August 2011 (UTC)
That's probably less problematic, but it still may be an issue, depending on what the copyright nazisexperts over at Commons say. If it works, then I'd be apt to just go ahead and retake this photo since this one is so old... there's now a restaurant in the boarded-up building! Best, epicAdam(talk) 04:55, 19 August 2011 (UTC)
I just realized something... the original night image of the True Reformer building hasn't been marked as problematic. Might as well just revert to that image. Best, epicAdam(talk)
Good then, that looks fine.-- Patrick, oѺ 17:02, 22 August 2011 (UTC)

Average federal land ownership

Hello, small thing -- in the geography section, a sentence reads: "The United States government owns about 23% of the land in the District. On average, the federal government owns about 29% of the land in each state.[43]."

But looking at the source document, I believe that wording is misleading to the point of almost being wrong. The source document indicates that the federal government owns 29 percent of all land in the US, but NOT "29 percent of the land in each state." The percentage is skewed by a handful of western states; 35 states have less than 10 percent federally owned.

Maybe it's not exactly factually inaccurate, but it misleads readers into thinking DC doesn't have an unusually high amount of federal land, when it's got substantially more than 37 states. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 04:36, 23 August 2011 (UTC)

I can see how that can be confusing. I switched it to say "a lower percentage than 12 other states" as opposed to comparing to the average. Good catch. Best, epicAdam(talk) 15:17, 23 August 2011 (UTC)


DC is not administered by the "federal govt", but by Congress per the Constitution. It is in effect a territory. Also, what specifically are included in "other outlying areas within the district"? If they are within the district, how can they be "outlying"?

Norm — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 04:20, 19 September 2011 (UTC)

Congress is part of the federal government. It's clarified further in the lead. If you clicked the link, you would find out what the other outlying areas are. :-) Best, epicAdam(talk) 16:47, 20 September 2011 (UTC)

Capitol vs. Capital

Is there a reason DC is being called the "capital" in the first paragraph as opposed to the "capitol"? Thanks James — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 17:02, 5 October 2011 (UTC)

Hi James. The word "capital" refers to a place that serves as the seat of government (see capital city). "Capitol" (with an "o") refers to a the building in which a legislature meets, such as the United States Capitol. So since this article is about the city, it is the U.S. capital (with an "a"). Best, epicAdam(talk) 17:11, 5 October 2011 (UTC)

District of Columbia elevations

Please see the official National Geodetic Survey and United States Geological Survey references for the District of Columbia at the List of U.S. states by elevation. Yours aye,  Buaidh  14:00, 23 October 2011 (UTC)

I see that list but the sources are conflicting. The USGS source clearly marks the height at around the 409-foot mark [2] and so do nearly all other sources. I can even go to Fort Reno this afternoon and take a picture of the USGS medallion which says the same. The only thing I found that says any different is this datasheet from the National Geodetic Survey cited on the U.S. states by elevation article, which says that the "NAVD 88" has a "VERTCON" of 490 feet but then underneath says that the "VERTCON" had been adjusted/derived from several other different survey factors. Further, the datasheet seems to be the location and height of a particular marker described as sitting on top of a built structure. It's therefore unclear if this is the highest natural elevation of the land or if it's describing the height of this particular station marker (more likely). Either way, I think this article should go with the clearly defined and widely published sources from the USGS instead of trying to decipher a NGS datasheet. Best, epicAdam(talk) 16:16, 23 October 2011 (UTC)

The city structure

did the city is built on the Latitude and the Longitude of the Geographical map of the earth ? ... is see the National Mall is sitting on Geographic lines. פארוק (talk) 00:24, 9 December 2011 (UTC)

I'm not exactly sure what you're asking. Washington is a planned city, so the land was surveyed in reference to lines of latitude and longitude. I don't think anybody can really say if there was a reason for the city to be laid out at these specific coordinates. The lines themselves are all arbitrary and there were even a few plans to create a Washington meridian as an alternative to the prime meridian set in England, but none of them ever stuck. Best, epicAdam(talk) 02:51, 9 December 2011 (UTC)
i see that the National Mall is Exactly the longitude from west to east on the world map and you can see it on Google Earth. also, for a planned city - after Pierre Charles L'Enfant was fired from work the city shape became ugly and lost the shape of the original design. פארוק (talk) 12:31, 9 December 2011 (UTC)

Edit request on 13 December 2011.

Will someone please correct this common error: the seat of a government is spelled "capitol" in English,; the word "capital" is a financial term, as in "capitalist." The entire article needs this correction. Reference: any English dictionary. (talk) 02:44, 13 December 2011 (UTC)Beagle (talk) 02:44, 13 December 2011 (UTC)

No, "capital" is correct. See, as just one example, . "Capitol" refers to the building in which the government is housed. See above. JohnInDC (talk) 02:57, 13 December 2011 (UTC)
X mark.svg Not done, Capital vs capitol--Jac16888 Talk 02:59, 13 December 2011 (UTC)
I would also like to add that this article is written in American English. This person is likely British, where "capitol" is used to refer to a nation's governmental seat. Here in the United States, the word "capital" is also used to refer to the same thing. I hope that has cleared up the confusion. Cadiomals (talk) 02:20, 15 January 2012 (UTC)

National Gallery of Art video

I would like to get the opinion of other editors as the video of the interior of the National Gallery of Art. I find the video to be of low quality and not representative of the city. It may be appropriate for the article on the gallery itself, but I fail to see how the video's inclusion better illustrates Washington, D.C., to the reader. -epicAdam(talk) 04:43, 17 February 2012 (UTC)

I agree. It is amateurish in execution and editing. It's slow to load, its subject matter (the National Gallery) is but a tiny subset of this article, and the clip, consisting as it does largely of moving pictures of static objects, adds little or nothing over simple photographs of the same scenes. At nearly four minutes, it is also quite long - it seems extremely unlikely that any reader would actually sit through the entire thing. More suitable to this (or any) article would be a short video snippet, 15-30 seconds, illustrating something that is difficult to convey fully in words or pictures. Lastly I would also note that the editor who created it has added it to a variety of other articles, across many of the Wikipedias, and as such it is also a bit spammy. JohnInDC (talk) 11:51, 17 February 2012 (UTC)

Washington D.C. a city or a territory?

Hi, could anyone tell me if Washington D.C. is a territory and the city is within that terrotory? In the basque wikipedia the article about D.C. says "Washinton Hiria" which means city, and I'm not quite sure if that's right. Drpolilla (talk) 19:52, 19 February 2012 (UTC)

It's a federal district. The article explains its status. If there's something in particular that doesn't make sense, let us know here. --AW (talk) 20:14, 19 February 2012 (UTC)
And in territorial terms, I believe it's equivalent to an incorporated, organized territory of the U.S., with the special proviso that it has electoral votes. "Washington city" is a not uncommon term, used by some people just for fun and also perhaps to differentiate from Washington state. But I think it could be improper to name the article that, but that's something for the Basque to discuss. But, politically, there is no difference between the district and the city - they are one and the same, just as there's no difference between Singapore the city and Singapore the nation, or between San Francisco County and the city thereof. "Washington DC" = "The District" in all ways. --Golbez (talk) 23:16, 19 February 2012 (UTC)

diversified economy

I know "diversified economy" is a lovely buzzword, but in essence DC is a company town. When you add up government employees and contractors you'll see that they represent such a large part of the economic input that it is very hard to argue DC's economy is truly diversified. We should probably change this. (talk) 16:43, 18 April 2012 (UTC)

I disagree. For one, the statement is cited to a reliable source. Second, I don't think your assertion is necessarily correct. Using the latest data (just updated the ref in the article), we find that total government (federal, local, and quasi-government agencies like Metro) account for 1/3 of the total employment (29% federal, 4% local). Though it's difficult to tell which particular private sector jobs are directly related to government, anything that could possibly be included as lobbying/legal services/government support make up as much as 21% of the total employment in the city. All the other areas such as retail trade, IT, finance, education, healthcare, hospitality, etc. combine for the remaining 46% of jobs in the District. I don't know about you, but that seems to be a rather good balance for what is supposed to be a company town, or is at least enough to call employment "diversified". Even though people try to make the argument that it's a company town because if the federal government wasn't here then nothing else would be, but I think that's stretching things just a bit too far. Nearly every city was founded with a primary industry that gets the ball rolling for everything else... that's nothing new. Best, epicAdam(talk) 12:30, 19 April 2012 (UTC)

LEAD paragraph

I was reading through this article, and noticed something worth discussion. Per WP:LEAD, the lead should be no more than four paragraphs, so why is it that this article has five lead paragraphs? Being that this is a FA, that is a bit strange. That being said, I wanted to bring it up here first, because I wasn't sure if this was an ignore all rules case, agreed upon by consensus. Even if it is, there is no point, as paragraphs 2 and 3 can be merged. I'll merge them myself, as long as no one objects, or signals that this was a consensus choice. Looking forward to hearing everyone's opinions! TRLIJC19 (talk) 04:17, 17 June 2012 (UTC)

Hi TRLIJC19. Five paragraphs are used here primarily to promote readability. The overall length of the introduction, which is what the guideline at WP:LEAD is trying to promote, is rather average for featured articles on major U.S. cities. I did a quick check and this article's lead is 378 words, compared to Detroit (418), San Francisco (406), Houston (316), Seattle (396). As such, simply merging two paragraphs for the sake of merging them is a definitely a case where WP:IAR should be applied. Best, epicAdam(talk) 12:41, 17 June 2012 (UTC)
Okay, thanks for the fast explanation! TRLIJC19 (talk) 14:03, 17 June 2012 (UTC)

Hi All. Somewhat in relation to this post, I revised the lead to hopefully clarify it a little better for the average reader. Take a look at the changes and let me know what you think! Thanks, epicAdam(talk) 14:08, 18 June 2012 (UTC)

It appears to flow much better, and serve as a clearer summary. Good job, TRLIJC19 (talk) 14:35, 18 June 2012 (UTC)


I don't know if there's a good way for this to fit into the article, but I wish to state, for the record, that a nickname for Washington is "Hollywood for Ugly People." ("Who says Washington is "Hollywood for ugly people"?: We trace a cliche back to its origins". The Washington Post. 6 December 2010. Retrieved 16 August 2012. ) --BDD (talk) 22:26, 16 August 2012 (UTC)

I would suggest adding this to the Nicknames of Washington, D.C. page with the source. I added the wikilink to the article from the infobox. Best, epicAdam(talk) 02:01, 17 August 2012 (UTC)

Edit request on 23 August 2012

It would be nice to add another external link (to the external links section) for a points of interest application for Washington, D.C. For example, the moderator can add:

  • MSOR Solutions, Washington, D.C. interactive map of gas stations, hotels, landmark buildings and structures, metro station entrances, shopping centers, sidewalk cafés, and trails

ObservableDeveloper (talk) 16:04, 23 August 2012 (UTC)

Sigh, this is bordering on spamming. See Talk:Toronto. You need to get consensus before asking to put the link there. A boat that can float! (watch me float!) 16:25, 23 August 2012 (UTC)


Is DC "unique" in that among cities with large black populations, African Americans have been there since the city's creation? Atlanta and New Orleans come to mind. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 15:17, 27 August 2012 (UTC)

I'm not sure that Atlanta and New Orleans had urban black populations nearly as large as Washington, but you're right that "unique" is probably not the best word. I rephrased the sentence. Best, epicAdam(talk) 16:28, 27 August 2012 (UTC)

It says "Formally known and District (of?) Columbia", might this not have really meant to be "formerly known as"?

It doesn't. It says "Washington, D.C., formally the District of Columbia". It's not former at all, it's still that. --Golbez (talk) 22:13, 3 October 2012 (UTC)

Human Rights Campaign in the lead

There are probably hundreds of lobbying organizations headquartered in Washington, DC, many of them larger than HRC (e.g. AARP, National Asssociation of Realtors) and many older (NAACP, AMA). I don't see any particular reason that HRC should enjoy singular mention - particularly in the fourth paragraph of the article - and that is why I've removed it. If I'm missing something, let's discuss it here. Thanks. JohnInDC (talk) 22:09, 1 November 2012 (UTC)

JohnInDC is correct that HRC should not be included in the lead. Since this is a main article, we strive to not mention any such organizations or businesses by name to avoid the article from becoming a list and to avoid any perception of bias by including one organization by name and not another. Best, epicAdam(talk) 00:08, 2 November 2012 (UTC)

Why "Columbia"

What is the relevance of "Columbia" here? — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 22:21, 6 November 2012 (UTC)

Article says: "The federal district was named Columbia, which was a poetic name for the United States commonly in use at that time." --Golbez (talk) 22:26, 6 November 2012 (UTC)

The C&O Canal and Retrocession

In my past reading on the history of Northern Virginia, I read somewhere that a primary reason for the request by Alexandrians to retrocede to Virginia concerned the investment made by the (Federal? DC?) decision makers in building the C&O canal for the economic betterment of Georgetown but an unwillingness to consider building a similar canal on the Virginia side of the Potomac. As I recall, the Alexandrians subsequently appealed to the State government in Richmond and were told that nothing could be done as long as Alexandria was part of the District of Columbia. Unfortunately I have no reference for this, but if there is someone familiar with this issue who can verify it, I would think it bears a mention in the section or retrocession. (talk) 19:02, 5 December 2012 (UTC)SMcK

Interesting! It seems to be pretty well covered in District of Columbia retrocession, though, and I'm not sure it would easily condense down to the sentence or phrase that it would warrant here. JohnInDC (talk) 20:36, 5 December 2012 (UTC)
It is indeed interesting history. However, I wouldn't be so quick to include a specific mention of the Alexandria Canal in this article. First, while Congress didn't provide funding for the Alexandria Canal, it did issue the canal company a charter in 1830 and the main portion of the canal was built over the next decade with private funds. Ships were already using the canal to carry goods by the time the retrocession occurred. More problematic was the prohibition on federal buildings and similar projects, which were all being built across the Potomac in Washington. Therefore the article uses the more general terminology to describe the overall "neglect" of Alexandria by Congress. Second, most of the historical narratives point directly at slavery and the slave trade as the main catalyst for the retrocession. It's probably best to leave the full (and very detailed) explanation to the article on retrocession. Best, epicAdam(talk) 06:05, 6 December 2012 (UTC)

Edit request on 8 February 2013 Formally known as the District of Columbia?

It should read: Washington, D.C., the District of Columbia and commonly referred to a.....

The District of Columbia is still a valid name. When was this changed? It wasn't. DC is the District of Columbia. (talk) 01:11, 8 February 2013 (UTC)


why Washington, D.C. with comma, seems like Washington is in other territory for example: ny, music as far as I know complete name is Washington D.C. ,did you notice ,not comma--EEIM (talk) 02:30, 9 February 2013 (UTC)

"Washington, D.C." describes the city and the political subdivision in which it is located (though in this case, they're identical) - it's no different than New York, New York; San Francisco, California, or Paris, France. JohnInDC (talk) 02:57, 9 February 2013 (UTC)

Washington D.C.

In the 'Crime' section the words 'but the level of violence then began to decline drastically' are used. Why is it 'drastic' that crime levels began to drop ? Surely the word 'drastic' should be replaced by the word 'significantly' or something similar ? — Preceding unsigned comment added by MacBeth1050 (talkcontribs) 12:43, 22 April 2013 (UTC)

Hi MacBeth1050. I made a change. Thanks! -epicAdam(talk) 23:46, 22 April 2013 (UTC)


My edit to put commas after the names of states was reverted. They should always be there for the sentence to be grammatically correct. For example, "The District is bordered by Montgomery County, Maryland, to the northwest." Please see WP:COPYEDIT. Inglok (talk) 15:07, 3 June 2013 (UTC)

This has been reverted now. Thank you. Inglok (talk) 00:10, 4 June 2013 (UTC)

Sept. 11 and home rule?

What (if anything) does the September 11, 2001 attack have to do with "Civil rights and home rule"? Why is the mention under that heading? — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 17:03, 12 June 2013 (UTC)

Those are just headings dividing up the history section. That period in Washington's history involved much in civil rights, and was when it gained home rule. What would you prefer it be changed to? "Home rule and modern history"? --Golbez (talk) 17:10, 12 June 2013 (UTC)
Hm. Fair point - none of the paragraphs that are in there (other than the one on the home rule declaration itself) feels like it matches to me. I think "Modern history" would be a fair heading, because dividing each of the paragraphs up into its own section seems like overkill. (talk) 19:01, 12 June 2013 (UTC)
It's rather common in D.C. to use "Home Rule" era/period to describe the city's history after 1973. "Modern history" is inherently problematic because it's entirely relative. If we were to change it, I'd prefer a more specific term. Best, epicAdam(talk) 22:42, 12 June 2013 (UTC)

Sept. 11 and home rule?

What (if anything) does the September 11, 2001 attack have to do with "Civil rights and home rule"? Why is the mention under that heading? — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 17:03, 12 June 2013 (UTC)

Those are just headings dividing up the history section. That period in Washington's history involved much in civil rights, and was when it gained home rule. What would you prefer it be changed to? "Home rule and modern history"? --Golbez (talk) 17:10, 12 June 2013 (UTC)
Hm. Fair point - none of the paragraphs that are in there (other than the one on the home rule declaration itself) feels like it matches to me. I think "Modern history" would be a fair heading, because dividing each of the paragraphs up into its own section seems like overkill. (talk) 19:01, 12 June 2013 (UTC)
It's rather common in D.C. to use "Home Rule" era/period to describe the city's history after 1973. "Modern history" is inherently problematic because it's entirely relative. If we were to change it, I'd prefer a more specific term. Best, epicAdam(talk) 22:42, 12 June 2013 (UTC)


This should be mandatory information.

The place/surname is named after the English town. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:01, 21 June 2013 (UTC)

Well, the place is named after the surname. Information on the surname's etymology belongs, IMO, with the article on the surname. --Golbez (talk) 16:05, 21 June 2013 (UTC)
Agree with Golbez. -epicAdam(talk) 13:46, 22 June 2013 (UTC)

Use of the name Washington

I always thought of Washington as the name for this municipality when it is functioning as a city. (E.g., "He is the mayor of the City of Washington.") I always thought of the District of Columbia as the name for this municipality when it is functioning as a federated district. (E.g., "She is the representative from the District of Columbia.") However, after some research, it appears that the only official name for this municipality is, in fact, the District of Columbia, which in turn means that Washington is not in any way an official name.

Does this mean that Washington is simply a poetic, historical name for this municipality, as it used to be called the City of Washington when DC had more than one city inside it? If someone could help me understand, that would be great. —Wikipedian77 (talk) 21:50, 6 July 2013 (UTC)

The Talk page archives contain lots of discussion on this issue generally. I'm not sure if this entry answers your question but it's a start! JohnInDC (talk) 01:01, 7 July 2013 (UTC)
The "District of Columbia" is the formal name for the District, but the "City of Washington" still exists; it just doesn't have a government. It's for this reason that we avoid using the word "official" for either name. The current wording is accurate. -epicAdam(talk) 02:05, 7 July 2013 (UTC)

Edit Request

We should all get with the times and realize that lots of young people call DC "DCizzle" (pronounced DSizzle). We should make this change in the list of commonly referred to names.[1] — Preceding unsigned comment added by DCizz (talkcontribs) 00:11, 5 March 2013 (UTC)

Why does it say Washington DC is home of Congress, The Supreme Court, and President. Can we at least make it "the President" or maybe change them to "DC is the home of the Judicial, Executive and Legislative Branch" something like that. Thanks -DJ Don — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 03:29, 26 May 2013 (UTC)

Why is the Washington Senators 1924 World Series Championship removed from the sports section? (talk) 14:02, 11 July 2013 (UTC) Larry

I don't think it was removed, as such - the sports section only lists championships by present-day teams. The article, Sports_in_Washington,_D.C., does note the 1924 championship. JohnInDC (talk) 15:12, 11 July 2013 (UTC)