Mason-Dixon Line

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Mason-Dixon Line,

boundary between Pennsylvania and Maryland (running between lat. 39°43'26.3"N and lat. 39°43'17.6"N), surveyed by the English team of Charles Mason, a mathematician and astronomer, and Jeremiah Dixon, a mathematician and land surveyor, between 1763 and 1767. The ambiguous description of the boundaries in the Maryland and Pennsylvania charters led to a protracted disagreement between the proprietors of the two colonies, the Penns of Pennsylvania and the Calverts of Maryland. The dispute was submitted to the English court of chancery in 1735. A compromise between two families in 1760 resulted in the appointment of Mason and Dixon. By 1767 the surveyors had run their line 244 mi (393 km) west from the Delaware border, every fifth milestone bearing the Penn and Calvert arms. The survey was completed to the western limit of Maryland in 1773; in 1779 the line was extended to mark the southern boundary of Pennsylvania with Virginia (present-day West Virginia). Before the Civil War the term "Mason-Dixon Line" popularly designated the boundary dividing the slave states from the free states, and it is still used to distinguish the South from the North.


See study by E. Danson (2001).

Mason-Dixon Line

boundary between Pennsylvania and Mary-land that came to divide the slave (southern) states from the free (northern) states. [Am. Hist.: NCE, 1714]
References in periodicals archive ?
While they have not of course broken or dismantled the legitimacy of the scientific discourse they rely on to form the Mason-Dixon Line, the opening of Pynchon's texts points toward a disjuncture between this discourse and a narrative discourse or knowledge.
Aspiring towards equality among human beings around the world, irrespective of their race and progressing in the long march towards universal ideals of justice and tolerance would certainly not have been possible if the Mason-Dixon Line had prevailed and slavery had not been effectively abolished.
When it comes to tracing the roots of American music, there's just no place like the South: jazz, rhythm & blues, rock & roll, gospel--most music that comes with a "made in America" stamp originated south of the Mason-Dixon line.
Practically straddling the Mason-Dixon Line, Baltimore was "not really South, not really North, kind of a limbo town" she says of its cultural ambiguity, of the poles of prejudice and possibility that defined her world.
The 17 papers begin with the Mason-Dixon Line Survey, which established the border between Maryland and Pennsylvania in the middle 18th century.
The Mason-Dixon line was not a barrier to his words, printed or spoken.
The slow erosion of GOP support in exurban neighborhoods is happening all over the country, including south of the Mason-Dixon line.
Charles Harlan's "Battle of Historical Inaccuracy," his record of a Civil War-battle reenactment near his hometown in Georgia, appears at a glance almost risibly clueless regarding Goldin's images but proves to be a quite trenchant analysis of subculture: "Goldin's friends and these Civil War reenactors, though separated by the Mason-Dixon line, and a liberal education, have more in common than either group would be willing to admit," Harlan relates.
Within Niagara Falls, Ontario, researchers found Niagara Glen, the largest urban old-growth forest north of the Mason-Dixon line.
Back in her previous existence south of the Mason-Dixon line, young Mel got into the back of good old boy Jake Perry's truck (Josh Lucas) and got herself a no-good layabout of a husband.
A leafy tangle along a stretch of the Cosumnes River, halfway between Sacramento and Stockton, has all the signs of a mangrove swamp south of the Mason-Dixon line.