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. . . Stood at the Center of Power

Sunday, October 10, 2004; Page C02

. . . stood at the center of power. Okay, so we'll let you policy wonks argue among yourselves as to which branch the founders envisioned as the most powerful, and technically it isn't the center of the District of Columbia. But the Zero Milestone on the north side of the Ellipse is the spot from which all highway distances are measured to the nation's capital. Today, this oft-overlooked hip-high monument more often than not serves as a place to prop camera bags as tourists take pictures of the White House's South Lawn.

The Zero Milestone, built in the 1920s, is on the north side of the Ellipse. (Matt Sheehan -- The Washington Post)

_____Previous Articles_____
You Haven't Lived Here if You Haven't . . . (The Washington Post, Feb 6, 2005)
. . . Explored the History of the Man for Whom our Town is Named (The Washington Post, Jan 30, 2005)
. . . Uttered the Phrase, "Let's Meet at Kramerbooks" (The Washington Post, Jan 23, 2005)
The Entire Series

The Zero Milestone was conceived and constructed in the 1920s to commemorate the Army's first attempt to send a convoy of military vehicles cross-country. The idea for the pillar was modeled after the golden milestone at the nexus of the highways constructed by the Roman Empire.

Know of a uniquely Washington area experience or a place you always take out-of-towners? Send a note to haventlived@washpost.com. For previous features, go to www.washingtonpost.com/haventlived.

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