In January 1788, James Madison argued that a national capital would need to be distinct from any given state in order to provide adequate maintenance, safety and perspective on the condition of our union. This led to the creation of Washington, D.C.
This fall, American Field is making a similar proclamation—in Washington, D.C., of all places. We have a responsibility as consumers. A responsibility to pursue adequate perspective on the impact of our purchases. That’s why we’re on a mission to connect local business owners with discerning customers. So they can meet in a space distinct from established commerce, and get to know the stories behind each product.
But before we reenergize American-made commerce in Washington, D.C., we should learn a bit more about the city itself.
Shortly after selection, President Washington began to refer to the town as “the Federal City.” The name stuck for a year, until 1791, when the commissioners agreed that the “Federal City” would be known as the "Washington"—chosen to honor the President.
Over the years, the city has seen plenty of action. During the War of 1812, British forces nearly incinerated the town. April, 1865, brought the assassination of President Lincoln. And crime in the late 1900s earned D.C. the moniker “Murder Capital of the United States.”
But powerful change has also been created in D.C. Over the years, the city has served as a canvas for some of the most powerful marches and protests in history—efforts that have allowed our country to modernize, grow stronger, and make good on our promises of freedom.
To wrap up, Washington,D.C., was never meant to support American-manufacturing. But the decisions made within its borders have manufactured a better nation.
So when you visit American Field D.C. on October 17-18 to relish in the great products America made—give some gratitude to the city that made America.