How All 50 U.S. States Got Their Names

How Each Of The 50 US States Got Their Names

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  • I stopped at “New Mexico”, that information is wrong: the god of war in Aztec mythology is Huitzilopochtli, and ‘Meztil’ not Mextli is the goddess of the moon in the Mexica mythology.
    The patrons in Aztec mythology are Mictlantecuhtli y Quetzalcóatl, they symbolize life and death they’re a duality and need each other to give life. A balance.

    And Mexico itself is formally called like that, in addition to that it has two official names which are Mexican Republic and the United Mexican States. Mexico has three names.

  • Arkansas is wrong. The meaning is correct but the spelling is wrong. It use to be spelled Arkansaw and a newspaper reported changed it to Arkansas because he thought it looked more educated.

  • There are some discrepancy in your French.

    Oregon: It’s ‘Fleuve’ and not Flueve.
    Iowa: ‘ayuhwa’ as no meaning in French, not even in old French.

  • Utah is also wrong – it means:

    yudah “high” (in reference to living in the mountains).
    Spanish yuta, from Ute entaw or yuta (“diggers of the mountain tops”)

    It basically means “tops of the mountains”.

  • Mary Kay Tyminski

    Oops… Minnesota means “sky tinted waters”.

  • For Mississippi – the name Mississippi given to it by the Indians, was the name that was used on Robert Cavelier Sieur de La Salle’s map of the area in 1695.

    Mississippi means “large river” to the Chippewa Indians.

  • Pennsylvania was not named after William Penn. If that had been the case, the name of the state would have been Pennwilliam. Instead, it is named after William Penn’s wife, Sylvania, thus the name of the stated, Pennsylvania.

  • New Mexico is wrong.
    It’s called New MEXICO, because Coronado, a Spanish settler thought the land contained riches like Mexico.
    New Mexico was only apart of Mexico for 10 years shortly after Spain lost it and then it was shortly taken over by the USA.

    So many misconceptions about out state already and this is making it worse.
    Thanks! 🙂

  • It’s disappointing to see that you’re source at the bottom of each state leads to your own website. To be even somewhat credible an outside trustworthy source (state government websites) would help especially since quite a few of these are incorrect.

  • Of course, Washington is named after the President, and his surname was based on the town in England called Washington. However, your etymology of that is incorrect. The “-ton” of course, means “town”, and is found in any number of English place names. The “-ing-” part is also common in English place names, usually in combination with “-ton” (town) or “-ham” (home). It refers to the descendants of a particular person. Thus, in Anglo-Saxon, the Levites were called “Lewingas”. Washington itself, in Tyne and Wear, was originally “Hwaesingatun”, the first syllable being the personal name “Hwaesa”, meaning a “sheaf of wheat”, and is cognate with the Swedish royal name, Vasa.