Have you ever been to Gem of the Mountains? How about Flowery Easter? Maybe you think you’ve never heard of these places, but chances are you have. You might even live there.
Expedia Canada created this fascinating map which shows the literal state name of every state in the U.S. and some areas of Canada.
“Flowery Easter” is Florida, and “Gem of the Mountains” is Idaho. Kentucky is “The Meadow,” while Nevada apparently means “Snow Covered.” Some states are titled after famous settlers, such as Pennsylvania, named for Sir William Penn).
Others, however, are named for famous monarchs. Louisiana was named for King Louis the XIV of France, while Georgia was titled in honor of King George II. This is not the King George opposed by American revolutionaries, that was his son, George III.
Many of the state names that we find so familiar now were derived from Native American words. Alaska, for instance, comes from the Aleut language and means “That Which the Sea Breaks Against.”
Some of the names are long and poetic. Wisconsin, for one, is also known as “River Running Through a Red Place.” Kansas translates to “People of the South Wind.”
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Other state names are pretty short and self-explanatory, though. Colorado means “Sandstone Soil,” and Mississippi means “Great River.”
If you want to see the research Expedia did to determine the translations for each literal state name, you can check it out here.