That was some line Mason and Dixon handed Maryland more than 200 years ago.
In fact, after Maryland, Delaware and the federal government spent several years and nearly $200,000 to recheck and restore perhaps the most famous boundary in history, they found the original Mason-Dixon line was right on the mark.
Yesterday, on the line's 214th birthday, they celebrated the resurvy and restoration in a formal ceremony smack on what they are now sure is the Maryland-Delaware border.
Although the Mason-Dixon is often thought of as the dividing line between the North and the South, it actually divides Maryland from Pennsylvania, and then runs for 82 miles along the eastern boundary of Maryland, dividing it from the western edge of Delaware.
It was the Maryland-Delaware section that was laid out first, with the initial stone marker laid on June 27, 1764, by English surveyors Charles Mason and Jeremiah Dixon.
They'd been called in to draw a line to separate the Penns and Calverts, who had been feuding since the 1600s over claims to the peninsula that juts out between the Delaware River and Chesapeake Bay.
There are even those who still say the Calverts (Lord Baltimore) got a raw deal when the line was drawn down the middle of the peninsula. It gave the Penns the area that later became the state of Delaware.
"The more I read, the more I think the Baltimores got cheated." Delaware columnist and historian Bill Frank said at yesterday's ceremony. "It was a case of who knew whom back in the court (of England). And William Penn was a real smart real estate operator."
Despite these lingering suspicions, officials of both states and the Federal National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration got together to resurvey the line and restore the original markers to their proper locations. THe latter task sometimes turned Surveyors into detectives, searching for 700-pound limestone markers that had been butted into swamps by bulls, buried under concrete highways and dragged off by ambitious thieves.
When chief surveyor Ralph Poust and his crews began their work in 1975, sixteen of the markers were missing. When they finished, all but five had been restored to their proper locations. Poust says he believes he knows where these five are but cannot get to them.
Poust and other at the ceremony held at Rte. 404 and the Maryland-Delaware line about 10 miles from Denton, marveled at the accuracy of Mason and Dixon's survey done through astronomical observations with instruments that would be considered crude today.
Before their work was verified by the resurvey, disputes sometimes arose, for instance over police jurisdiction in auto accidents that occurred on the border.
All the arguing is now over, according to Delaware Secretary of State Glenn Kenton, who said, "I think the 200-year-old disputes ended with yesterday's ceremony."