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Choosing ‘pleasing names’ for CoCo County streets in 1890

By queen
Wednesday, March 4th, 2009 at 12:49 pm in Misc. Transportation.

“In Contra Costa there is quite a foreign population, and foreign names are used in some cases,” the San Francisco Pacific Rural Press informed its readers in 1890¬†as it reported on “the more progressive citizens of Contra Costa County” and their work selecting “pleasing names” for the county’s country roads. The article kindly explains that “Rio Vista” means “river view,” for the road along the bluff over the river west of Martinez.

Well, okay, it was 1890 and the writers, all of whom were probably much more recently arrived than the Spanish explorers whose names often comprised the “foreign” road appellations, lived in a different world. So let’s not be too hard on them for their somewhat xenophobic remarks. Regardless, the story is amusing, and if you’d like to get an insight on how many local roads got their names, check it out here.

(Photo: Brenden Ashton on flickr. No, it’s not CoCo County.)

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2 Responses to “Choosing ‘pleasing names’ for CoCo County streets in 1890”

  1. david vartanoff Says:

    nice plan, too bad we ended up with Bayo Vista interesecting Bay View and other such silliness

  2. Queen Says:

    Haha, so true! Actually, I find a certain endearing goofiness in this.

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