Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Renaming Rivers

One question that's been bugging me lately is the renaming of rivers. In the early 19th century, the Maumee River in Toledo was known as Miami of the Lakes, and the Olantangy River in Columbus was known as the Whetstone. Why were the names of these respective rivers changed, and by whom? A cursory look through Google books and wikipedia.org lead to this hint:
"In 1833, the Ohio General Assembly passed legislation intending to restore the original Native American names to some Ohio waterways, but mistakenly gave Whetstone River the name "Olentangy"—Delaware for "river of the red face paint"—which had actually belonged to what is now known as Big Darby Creek."
(from  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Olentangy_River).