In a companion paper (Ju and Swanson; J. Comp. Neurol. 280:587–602, '89) we described a parcellation scheme for the bed nuclei of the stria terminalis (BST) that was based on cytoarchitectonic criteria. In the work reported here, antisera to the neuropeptides corticotropin-releasing hormone, neurotensin, galanin, substance P, and cholecystokinin were used to determine the extent to which immunostained neuronal cell bodies and presumed terminal fields are correlated with this cytoarchitectonic scheme in the adult male rat. The results confirm the validity of the cytoarchitectonic parcellation and provide additional chemoarchitectonic criteria for determining the (as yet still somewhat arbitrarily defined) border between the BST and the ventrally adjacent preoptic region, for distinguishing between the anterior and posterior divisions of the BST, and for identifying and distinguishing between the particular cell groups or nuclei within each division. The projections of each neuropeptide-containing cell group in various parts of the BST remain to be determined, as do the precise origins of the localized immunoreactive terminal fields identified here.