The marker reads:
This monument at the headspring of the Potomac River marks one of the historic spots of America. It's name is derived from Thomas Lord Fairfax who owned all the land between the Potomac and Rappahannock Rivers. The first Fairfax Stone marked "FX" was set in 1746 by Thomas Lewis, a surveyor employed by Lord Fairfax. This is the base point for the western dividing line between Maryland and West Virginia.
Below is the stream flowing out of the spring that eventually ends up as the Potomac River. I actually find that fact rather awesome and love to straddle the river here with one foot on each "shore". Of course there are a lot of other headwaters that go to make up the Potomac and they are equally important. Many of our headwater streams are being endangered with chemical pollutants from farms and mining and need protection. This little spot is protected but much of the waters journey is not.
I write a lot about natural history and often forget the role of people in the development of our land but every now and then when I scratch the surface I find the origins of these little monuments. We have a tremendous influence on the land we live on and it is not something to be ignored. Thomas is almost a ghost town now and this little marker is all just a tiny spot on the map, it makes me realize how fragile our efforts are and yet how destructive they can be.
Check out other watery scenes at Watery Wednesday.