The Organization of American States (OAS) is currently hosting an exhibit of the International Boundary and Water Commission (IBWC), "Maps, Minutes and Monuments: History of the Boundary Line, 1848-2011," at its headquarters in Washington, DC. The exhibit includes technical drawings, maps and other documents drawn from the history of the body, which is responsible for applying the boundary and water treaties between the United States and Mexico and settling differences that may arise out of these agreements.
First created as a temporary agency known as the International Boundary Commission by the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo in 1848, the organization became a permanent agency in 1889, and in 1944 became the IBWC. The body is made up of a United States Section and a Mexican Section, each headed by an Engineer-Commissioner appointed by his respective president. The IBWC is widely recognized as a model of effective international cooperation which has set a standard for the world.
The exhibit currently on display at the OAS headquarters illustrates some of the IBWC's activities over its substantial history: maps and technical drawings created by cartographers and engineers, treaties and "minutes" crafted by diplomats and administrators, and the boundary monuments, dams, and levees built and maintained by the body.
For more information, please visit the OAS Website at www.oas.org.