Names on the Land A Historical Account of Place-Naming in the United States

ISBN-10: 1590172736

ISBN-13: 9781590172735

Edition: 2008

Authors: George R. Stewart, Matt Weiland

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This beloved classic about place-naming in the United States was written during World War II in a conscious effort to pay tribute to the heritage of the nation’s peoples. George R. Stewart’s love of the surprising story, and his focus not just on language but on how people interact with their environment, make Names on the Land a unique window into the history and sociology of America. From the first European names in what would later be the United States–Ponce de León’s flowery Florída, Cortez’s semi-mythical isle of California, and the red river Rio Colorado–to New England, New Amsterdam, and New Sweden; the French and the Russians; border ruffians and Boston Brahmins: Names on the Land is no dry dictionary but a fascinating panorama of language in action, bursting at the seams with revealing details. In lively, passionate writing, Stewart explains where Indian names were likely to be kept, and why; the fad that gave rise to dozens of Troys and to Athens, Georgia, as well as suburban Parksides, Brookmonts, and Woodcrest Manors; why “Brooklyn” is Dutch but looks English and why “Arkansas” is Arkansaw, except of course when it isn’t. His book has delighted generations of road-trippers, armchair travelers, and anyone who ever wondered how their hometown, or (more likely) the next town over, could be called that. Stewart’s answer is always a story–one of the countless stories that lie behind the rich and strange diversity of America.
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Book details

List price: $19.95
Copyright year: 2008
Publisher: New York Review of Books, Incorporated, The
Publication date: 7/1/2008
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 432
Size: 5.00" wide x 8.25" long x 1.00" tall
Weight: 1.232
Language: English

Foreword to the Revised and Enlarged Edition
Of what is attempted in this book
Of the naming that was before history
How the first Spaniards gave names
Of English, Spanish, and French in the same years
Of Charles Stuart and some others
How the Massachusetts General Court dealt with names
How the people began to give names
How names were symbols of empire
The History of New York
Of the French
How the Spaniards named another kingdom
When King Charles came to his own
How the names became more English and less English
How they took the names into the mountains
Of the years when they fought the French
Of a pause between wars
How the Leather-Jackets rode north
Of new names in the Land
America discovers Columbus
Of the last voyagers
Of ancient glory renewed
Of the new nation
Yankee flavor
How they took over the French names
Of Mr. Jefferson's western lands
Of the dry country and the farther mountains
Of a new generation
Of patterns for street-names
Flavor of the New South
Melodrama in the Forties
"Ye say they all have passed away..."
How the tradition of the States was broken
Of the cities of the Fifties
How they fought again
How Congress took over
Of the last flourishing
"Change the name of Arkansas-Never!"
Of rules and regulations
Flavor of California
Of modern methods
Cause celebre
Unfinished business
Current affairs-1944-1958
Author's Postscript
Notes and references
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