When Washington was first inaugurated in lower Manhattan on April 30, 1789, the US Capital was located in New York. In 1790 the US Government moved to Philadelphia. Southern Politicians didn't want the new capital that far north. When they were looking for a new, more permanent capital, they turned to Washington. Since Washington grew up around the general area where the new capital was to go, and because he had worked there as a surveyor, he was to make the decision of where the exact location was to be. Once the capital was established, it came to bear Washington's name.