« Create a PDF of a Website | Main | What Can Happen When You Don't Wipe PDF Metadata »

Strange Origins of Wisconsin Place Names

From Odd Wisconsin, one of my favorite blogs, comes Weird Wisconsin Names. According to the Wisconsin Historical Society, one of the most popular features of it's new online Dictionary of Wisconsin History is the origin of place names, complete with maps and aerial photos.

Cuba City, for example, was originally named Yuba -- from "You b'damned" -- after a dispute between two early settlers who platted it out differently. This was later changed to Cuba for the sake of politeness, which evolved into Cuba City.

Unfortunately, I did not find the origins of Wisconsin village named for one of my own ancestors. Legend has it that there was a dispute raging in the small village. Johann Marx, my great-great-grandfather, supposedly eased tensions by setting up a keg of beer in the center of town. The village, thereafter, became known as Marxville. Only in Wisconsin.