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The Nomenclature Of Ann Arbor

The Nomenclature Of Ann Arbor image
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A correspondent asks the Chicago Tribune Üie cause that led to the nainlng of the University city Ann Arbor, to whirh (bat paper makcH answer as follows : In February, 182, John Allen, of Virginia, and KllKba W. Kumsey, of Oenessec county, New Vork, met by aocldent iu Cleveland, O., andlormedan acquatntance. Both were In Bearch of u new home In the foresta of Michignu. They starled for the Interior of the terrltory touether, andonarrivlugluthe vlclnlty of the present site of Aun Arbor they located on soiue government lauda embraclng a beauliful burr-oak forest, wllU the Huron rlver ou the north and east. Here they pitched a tent and built an arbor, of whion Mary Ann Kumsey booarae mistress. Thls prlmitlve home was ohrlstened "AntTi Arbor," and the name, in the 8hortr form of Ann Arbor, wrh afterward ohosen by the early settlers as a name for tuelr new and thrifty villagu. That's all very plausible, but how absurd '. The word Ann Arbor is derived froui a cross between the Pottowotaraie and Flat-head Digger Injim. The Pottowottamie word "Agh-an" ineanitig squaw or hen and the Flat-head Digger word "Haw-baw-waw" meaning home or harbor; which translated into English is hen harbor, so-called from the fact that where now stands the beautiful University city there was once the camping ground of those two great tribes of Indiani-. Many, many ïuoons before the pale face act his foot on the yirgin soil of the Huron valley, these two tribes who were fnendly, pitched their camps on this deliglitful spot. Soon afterward, the braves beearae iuvolved in a great war with the Iroquols, and were nearly all killed In a great and desperate battle, which occurred to the north, near what is now the tlirivinj;- city of Ilowell, the exact spot being the junction of the T. A. A. & N. M. and the D. L. & H. K. R's. But they fought so wcll that inany acres of earth were covured with the dead Iroquois warriors. The result of the battle lett the Fottowottatnic and Uigger squaws'.wlth tlunr pappooses to tliemselves, and here they re mained unmoltsted until the male children grew up, (and the whites caino on and purchascd with fire-water the lovely location). Thus the place became known among the aboriginese as Agh-au hawbaw-waw or hen harbor, because there were 80 few males left in the Indian villasre. Wben the Englisli settled here they adopteJ the Indiaa cognomen, but of course dropped the haitch leaving it 'en 'arbor, wliich was further pollshed by Bostoniana wlio were attracted by tho beauty of the place at an early day, and gave to the settlement the beautiful naiue of Ann Arbor, as it reniains today. Tlius tUe uameg of our great places often foreshadow their future. The red man inimed the place aright, for in tliis harbor of education the women of our land wêre first admitted to equ;il educatlonal advautages wlth the men, and they fiad it a harbor of eafety and enlightentnent. Besides this, the great Inilux of marri.igiible girls who in time become "college widows," proves again the appropriateness of the original name. The tribune should correct the false impression it has sent broadcast over the land.


Ann Arbor Courier
Old News