Wednesday, October 26, 2016


Every state has towns and regions with odd names. Since I live in Texas, I’m most aware of my state’s names. There are towns like Dime Box and the former Lick Skillet.

Not only was Lick Skillet a community, but there were FIVE places with that name before postal organization arrived to eliminate duplication. Supposedly, one such town received that name because if you were late to community events, all the food was gone and you would have to lick the skillet if you were hungry.  

Imagine you are a sports announcer and the game is between the Quitaque Quail and the Mesquite Skeeters. Quitaque is a tongue twister for many people. To save newcomers a problem, the town sign gives the pronunciation as Kitty-quay. By the way, the town is best known for its bison ranch.

I love the tale about the Pedernales River. Early surveyors and mapmakers spelled the name wrong by inserting the R in the wrong place. Did that change citizens’ pronunciation? Not a bit. The river is pronounced Perdinales.

The Pedernales River
In North Central Texas are the towns of Rio Vista and Nevada. Rio Vista is not pronounced ree-o as is correct for Spanish. Locals say Rye-o Vista. The state is Nevada but the Texas town is Ne-vay-da. We Texans just do our own thing.

What are some odd town names in your state? 

Caroline Clemmons is an award winning and Amazon bestselling author whose latest release is RACHEL, Bride Brigade book 5.


  1. What a fun post! I was born and raised in Texas, so those town names are familiar to me. Now I live in Washington State where we have lots of unusual Native American names. One that I've learned to say correctly is Sequim. It's pronounced "squim" -- one syllable. Among the more interesting names are Voltage, Concrete, and Tiger (which obviously wasn't named after fauna in the northwest corner of the state!)

  2. Few places can compete with Pennsylvania for odd names. A sampling: Intercourse, Blue Ball, Bird-In-Hand, Ono, Gump, Scalp Level and Rough and Ready.

  3. Ohmagosh, this is so funny. Only in Texas! Great post, Caroline.

  4. Well, my favorite is Mexia...joke: a couple drive into the town of Mexia. She asks her husband, how do you pronounce that. He says he doesn't know. But they pull into a Dairy Queen for refreshments, and while there, the husband says, How do you pronounce the name of this place.
    She answers, "Daaa-reee Queeeen."
    Around her here we have:
    Menchaca--locally pronounced Man-shack
    There are others.
    Thanks for this fun post. Loved it.


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