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Subject: Re: Origin and meaning of word "Allegheny"
From: John Haddad <[log in to unmask]>
Reply-To:Geography <[log in to unmask]>
Date:Tue, 28 Jan 1997 18:41:13 GMT

text/plain (50 lines)

Alan A. Lew <[log in to unmask]> wrote in article <[log in to unmask]>...
> After not being able to find anything in any of my standard references,
> I too am now curious about this.  Can anyone help?  -- ALAN
> Douglas Drake wrote:
> >
> > Dr. Lew, could you tell me, or point me in the direction of information
> > pertaining to, the origin and meaning of the word "Allegheny"?
> >
> > Please e-mail your response to [log in to unmask]
> >
> > Thanks!
> --
> <><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><>
> Alan A. Lew, Ph.D., AICP; Associate Professor
> Dept. of Geography & Public Planning, Northern Arizona Univ. Box 15016
> Flagstaff, Arizona, USA 86011; tel: 520-523-6567; fax: 520-523-1080
> E-mail:  [log in to unmask]    URL:
> <><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><><>


After seeing your post, I remembered that I had an old out-of-print atlas
called "Pennsylvania County Maps" by C.J. Puetz.  Here's the info on
Allegheny County:

        [begin quote] Allegheny County was probably named for the Allegheny River.
 The original meaning of Allegheny is not known with certainty.  The name
has been a battleground for the Indian etymologists; no less than sex
different explanations are current.  Two of these are embodied in the
following quotation from Isaac Taylor:  "The old etymology explains the
word as 'the endless or boundless mountains,' but probably both the
Allegheny hills and the Alleghewi tribe derive their name from the river,
the word oolik-hanne meaning 'the best river' in the dialect of the
Delawares."  If a choice had to be made between these two etymologies, one
might be disposed to favor the older etymology, which derives the name from
the Delaware Eleuwi-guneu, meaning "endless," because it seems applicable
to the mountains as well as to the river.
        Another explanation has been given by some Canadian Delawares:  "The
Allegheny mountains were called by us Al-lick-e-wa-ny 'he is leaving us and
may never return.'  Reference is made, I suppose to departing hunters or
warriors, who were about to enter the passes of those rugged mountains."
[end quote]

I hope this will lead to some more clues and leads.

John Haddad
[log in to unmask]

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