One thing is for sure, America sure has its fair share of weird town names. From absolutely hilarious to downright mind-boggling, some of these – actually all of these- cities and villages names will make you question society or at least seriously wonder where such an idea could possibly come from. Still, considering that the United-States counted were 16,470 registered places with a population of under 10 000 people in 2015, we understand that a few of them might have had to get creative. However, most of these names are very old and have a story of their own.
Considering that Santa Claus in Indiana, Hot Coffee in Mississippi and Hazardville in Connecticut didn’t make the cut, this top 20 of the weirdest town names in all of the United States is bound to make you laugh. Discover the stories behind these impossible town names in all 50 of the states.
20. Unalaska – Alaska
Don’t be fooled: This city really is in Alaska. In fact, it is one of the largest cities in the Aleutian Islands with a little more than 4500 residents. The story behind it all? Just a situation of foreigners butchering the name of Agunalaksh into Ounalashka, which eventually became Unalaska.
19. Why – Arizona
Why, you might ask? Well, this small Arizona community is named after the Y-shaped intersection of two nearby highways and since an Arizona law requiring place names have at least three letters, the town’s name took a rather questionnable turn.
18. Rough And Ready – California
Named after a mining company, Rough and Ready, California, was the first town to claim its independence. Though the residents rejoined the United States three months later, its residents still pay homage to their ancestor’s willingness to be Rough and Ready.
17. Two Egg – Florida
Not only did Two Egg, Florida, got its name form a Great Depression egg story, but it doesn’t even respect grammar. According to local lore, two boys were running so low on money that they paid for sugar with two eggs at a local shop. These make-do business transactions occurred so regularly that patrons began referring to the establishment as a “two egg store.” Eventually, the name caught on with travelling salesmen, who spread it to other towns.
16. Climax – Georgia
Get your mind out of the gutter; this tiny Georgia town founded in the 1880s, got its name from its location. It sits at the highest point on the railroad between Savannah and the Chattahoochee River.
15. Slickpoo – Idaho
Once a bustling village Slickpoo, now barely qualifies as a town. Originally the site of a Catholic mission, it was named after landowner Josiah Slickpoo who gifted to the area to the missionaries.
14. What Cheer – Iowa
Shop owner Joseph Andrews suggested calling it this Iowa town What Cheer, possibly after an old English greeting. Britton who had first named it Petersberg protested, but apparently not energetically enough and the name stuck. Today the 600 residents town hosts a seasonal flea market and musical events at its opera house.
13. Burnt Porcupine – Maine
Located near Bar Harbor and Acadia National Park, this Maine Island has nearby sister islands with equally intriguing names: Bald Porcupine, Long Porcupine, and Sheep Porcupine. But our favourite remains Burnt Porcupine.
12. Boring – Maryland
The village of Boring could have avoided all of the jokes if they had just stuck with the town’s original name—Fairview. But there are a lot of other Fairviews in the U.S., so when a post office was established in the village in 1880, the postal service requested a rename. Residents voted to honour their first postmaster, David J. Boring—and he surely thought the recognition was anything but.
11. Belchertown – Massachusetts
This is not the most appetising city name. But the story behind it is quite flat: Belchertown was named after Jonathan Belcher, a colonial governor of Massachusetts.
10. Hell – Michigan
Yes, there is a Hell on Earth, and it’s 15 miles northwest of Ann Arbor. There are several stories floating around about how this name came to be, but the one the town itself declares official is this: In the 1830s, the town settler, George Reeves, made a deal with local farmers to trade his homemade whiskey for the grain they grew. When the farmer’s wives knew their husbands were off dealing with Reeves, they were known to remark, “He’s gone to hell again.” The name stuck.
9. Hot Coffee – Mississippi
In the late 1800s, Hot Coffee, Mississippi, sat halfway between two popular travel destinations. Recognizing a good business opportunity a man built a store and hung a coffee pot outside advertising “the best hot coffee around.” Years later, the name stuck.
8. Knockemstiff – Ohio
Most of the stories about the area’s early days have to do with bar brawls, moonshine and the likes. The most famous tale however is this one : When a woman approached a preacher asking him how to keep her cheating husband home and faithful, he simply responded “Knock ‘em stiff.”
7. Intercourse – Pennsyvania
The village of Intercourse knows what you’re thinking as their website states : “It’s okay, you can giggle! We’re happy with our name. It’s the perfect conversation starter.” How the town acquired its name in 1814 is however unclear. And although the sexual meaning of the word intercourse didn’t come into popular use until the late 18th century, it fits quite well with the neighbouring town of Blue Ball named after a 1850s inn.
6. Ketchuptown – South Carolina
This Horry County town got its name from a country store built by Herbert Small in 1927, but not because of the condiments it sold. Every week, farmers would flock to Small’s store to “catch up” on news and gossip. As a town grew up around the store, the name stuck.
5. Mud Butte – South Dakota
Mud Butte was named after a nearby barren butte which is an isolated hill with steep sides and a flat top. Nothing special here, except perhaps the fact that in 1981, archaeologists digging around in Mud Butte unearthed the sixth Tyrannosaurus rex skeleton ever discovered, after a local rancher finally got around to calling a museum about the dinosaur bones he’d seen jutting out of a cliff on his property for years.
4. Difficult – Tennessee
There are two theories about Difficult’s name. Our favorite one is that when town residents applied for a post office, the Postal Service responded with your name is difficult. Residents took the letter as an order and accepted the name Difficult.
3. Satans Kingdom – Vermont
If New England town names are any indication, Satan’s been awfully busy. The prince of darkness evidently has franchises in Massachusetts, Connecticut, and Vermont—the latter of which was purportedly named by a resentful settler who “expected fertile, rolling acres and had received rocks and hills instead.”
2. Humptulips – Washington
This tiny town is famous for being Kurt Cobain’s birthplace. Its unusual name comes from a local Native American word meaning “hard to pole.” and refers to the nearby river, which Native Americans used to canoe by propelling themselves along with poles.
1. Lick Fork – West Virginia
While the name of this unincorporated community might whet your appetite, it’s likely named for a nearby salt lick, which was probably more appealing to horses and wild animals than humans. There’s a Lick Fork creek, road, and more nearby, so there’s no shortage of photo opportunities.
Source: Mental Floss