Where Is the Mason-Dixon Line Located?


Quick Answer

The Mason-Dixon Line separates Pennsylvania from Maryland, and it runs vertically through Delaware. While the line is a real surveyed boundary, it often serves as a metaphor for the division between the North and South.

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Full Answer

The line is named after two surveyors, Charles Mason and Jeremiah Dixon. These men were employed in 1763 to draft the boundary between Pennsylvania and Maryland and to establish Philadelphia's precise location. Mason and Dixon took four years to establish the 233-mile-long line. During the Civil War, the portion of the line running between Pennsylvania and Maryland served as the dividing line between states that permitted slavery and those that outlawed it.

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