Monday, April 1, 2019

An Important Update from the DC Statehood Movement.

Photo by Djembayz (Wikimedia/Creative Commons)
A Note from the CP Listserv Editors: 
We have been asked to post this important update on behalf of the DC Statehood movement:

DC is making real progress on the road to statehood – as reported by CBS last month:

Having won the support of a Democratic majority in the House of Representatives, plans are moving apace to make the District into “Douglass Commonwealth.” (The previously designated state name, “New Columbia” was abandoned in 2016 due to an obvious conflict over the two-letter postal code, with NC already in use for North Carolina, and a strong preference on the part of postal patrons here to retain the initials“DC” for that purpose.)

Having solved the postal code conflict, statehood advocates have taken up the challenge of giving the district many other needed appellations of statehood. First, and most important, a state is made up of cities and towns. That is accomplished simply by taking the names of established neighborhoods and upgrading them so that they will be recognized as the various cities of DC, the state. Here are some prominent examples from across the proposed state, shown as they would be written on postal mail and on shipping labels for online orders:

Adams Morgan, DC 20009
Anacostia, DC 20002
Brookland, DC 20017
Chevy Chase, DC 20015
Cleveland Park, DC 20008 or 20016
Georgetown, DC 20007
Dupont, DC 20016
Mount Pleasant, DC 20010
Petworth, DC 20011
Shaw, DC 20001
Takoma, DC 20012

Citizens of each of the cities and towns of the state will eventually be able to elect its own mayor and town council. To facilitate this process from the start, statehood advocates are calling for current ANC commissioners to be recognized as the first town council members, and the current ANC chairperson will become the Mayor of each. All these new positions will be salaried. Negotiations are already underway to set salary levels. They will be announced once they are final and unchangeable.

The next major task in turning the District into a true State is for each of the eight wards to become the eight counties of Douglass Commonwealth. The following are the proposed county names:

Ward 1 will become Gentry County. (It contains the most gentrified neighborhoods in US - see

Ward 2 will become Cenbid County, derived from Central Business Improvement District. (An earlier proposal to call it Chambcom, from the DC Chamber of Commerce, was rejected by the Council as just a little too blatant.)

Ward 3 will become Montgomery County - because every state  in the union has to have a Montgomery County.  And under that name, parents of school age children in the city are thought to be more likely to stay put, once they can tell friends and relations that their children are in the Montgomery County School system.

Ward 4 will become Diamondtip County. Just look at it on the map: 

Ward 5 will become Duke Georges County. It’s adjacent to Prince Georges County, but being the younger of the two, is given the rank of Duke, not Prince.

Ward 6 will be named Hill County. Because The Hill.

Ward 7 will be named Kingman County. Developers’ plans to build up Kingman Island may not be going anywhere, but giving the island’s name to the entire area could be a way to increase its real estate appeal – the same way parts of Rockville have been rebranded “North Bethesda.”

Ward 8 will be named Barry County. Because the late Mayor-for-Life should definitely get a county. And the alternative was to name the whole state “Barry Commonwealth.”

As wards become counties, and neighborhoods become cities, so the Mayor will becomes the Governor, the city council will be the state legislature, and all the other elements of a city will take on the trappings of a state. Now all that’s left is to name a capital city of the 51st state. In keeping with the tradition that says it’s wise to keep the seat of state politics away from the center of commerce and wealth – as New York state has its capital up the Hudson in Albany, Texas has its capital off in Austin, away from Dallas and Houston, Illinois has its capital in Springfield out in the plains, and California has its capital Sacramento in the Central Valley - so Douglass Commonwealth will follow suit. Instead of choosing Capitol Hill, Foggy Bottom, Georgetown, Noma, or any other highly urbanized area in the thick of things downtown, the new seat of our state government will be located a little distance "upstate" in a pleasant, leafy, cooler clime - a place once touted as being well suited for the summer homes of the rich and powerful.

Yes, that means that the capital of Douglass Commonwealth will be our own beloved Cleveland Park!

One of the larger and most historic homes on Highland Place will be acquired by eminent domain to become the new Governor’s Mansion. Highland Place will be renamed Governor’s Way.

The state legislature will be relocated from its present home in the District Building to the former Fannie Mae Building at 3900 Wisconsin Avenue NW - view its emblematically stately appearance here: The construction, currently underway, which was to transform the old Fannie Mae building into a mixed-used complex anchored by a Wegman’s, will be halted, and that new development will be moved to a suitable site in the new Duke Georges County, where it is most needed and welcomed.

However, for these changes to become reality, we need an immediate show of support by the people of Cleveland Park! Please sign the online petition below urging the Council to adopt the plans as outlined above to turn DC into Douglass Commonwealth, with Cleveland Park as its capital. The online petition is here:

Please add your name today!



  1. Fooled me. At least temporarily! Very good.

  2. You’ve done it again! Brava!!!

  3. Happy April Fool's Day!Very clever.

  4. Dear Peggy,

    At last, I can share this with everyone I know — as the Loofa Lirpa one has met its match!
    Happy AFD,

  5. Thank you for this nice April fools joke.

  6. All in favor of Peggy Robin, founder of the CP listserv to serve as first mayor of CP, vote “Aye!”
    With a big grin of appreciation,

  7. Very creative!
    Happy AFD!

  8. I made it halfway through the message before I remembered what day it was, and it was so clever, that I, actually, thought these folks are truly onto something (and with a good sense of humor, yet). Although, I really like Ward 1 being known as Gentry county. Sounds like something from a bodice ripper novella. Sadly, I'm not sure Congress will ever get its act together enough to give us our franchise.
    Thanks for the all the laughs.
    Best regards,

  9. Embarrassed that I also fell for it. I even seriously wondered how Newark St. would react to having the Governor's Mansion. Shows you how wishful thinking can trump reason. Kudos to the creative writers!
    Still red-faced

  10. Thanks for this wonderful piece of [science?] fiction!