Place names of St. Louis and Jefferson County
"Strangely fascinating are place-name, not only by their euphony, but by their romantic associations." So attractive is the study of place-name that it develops in the student a curiosity concerning the origin of all names. Realizing that behind every name is an interesting chapter from life, he finds himself wondering about the origin of names. He reviews the history, the geography, and the language of the region, hoping that some light may be thrown upon names by each of these fields of study. Frequently he must go further and try to understand the nature, the customs, the ideals, the religion, the amusements, and the vocations of the people in whose names he is interested. Because the research is many-sided and because every side is vital and significent, the student of place-names is amply rewarded for his labor. Taylor says that names are never mere arbitrary sounds, devoid of meaning, but that always there is some significance behind the names, however obscure it may seem. He points out that names of a region, like the flora, live on in spite of catastrophes that destroy almost every thing else. One proof of his statement is the fact that so many Indian names are extant in the United States, even though the remnants of the race are now confined to relatively small areas. It is the task of the place-name worker to find the significance, large or small, past or present, obvious or concealed, in each and every name...Pages 1-2.
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