The monument also marks the boundary between two semi-autonomous American Indian governments, the Navajo Nation, who maintains the monument as a tourist attraction, and the Ute Mountain Utes, whose reservation is located in Southwestern Colorado, south of the town of Cortez.
The origins of the monument as state boundaries began during the Civil War, when the U.S. Congress acted to form governments in the area to combat Confederate ambitions for the region. In 2009, a controversy erupted with a series of newspaper articles claiming that the monument was misplaced in the initial surveys. The accuracy of the initial surveys has been defended by the U.S. National Geodetic Survey and the monument has been legally established as the corner of the four states.
The Monument is a blending point of the four states and two tribes that make up the Trail of the Ancients National Scenic Byway.