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Santa Claus, Idiotville and Hot Coffee, strangest place names ever on World Cities Day

On World Cities Day, here are a list of strange places which are you probably haven’t heard of before.

travel Updated: Oct 31, 2018 09:00 IST
Kabir Bhandari
Kabir Bhandari
Hindustan Times, Delhi
World Cities Day,Strange names,Weird names
October 31 is celebrated as World Cities Day every year and its objective is to promote cooperation among countries in meeting opportunities and addressing the various challenges of urbanisation.(Unsplash.com)

A concrete jungle, a human zoo, a state of mind, a surrealistic place, a home, many have understood the idea of a city in so many ways. The definition varies from person to person but the heart of it always lies in the association we have with familiar surroundings, like a large close-knit family.

October 31 is celebrated as World Cities Day every year and its objective is to promote cooperation among countries in meeting opportunities and addressing the various challenges of urbanisation.

On this day , celebrating the spirit of gorgeous cities, we talk about the weirdest names after which some of the cities were named around the world. One of the most frequently asked questions we all have encountered is “Where are you from?” It mostly acts as an ice breaker and the perfect conversation starter. However, what if you stay at a place whose name would best be described as bizarre? Here are a list of places which are you probably haven’t heard of before.

1. Santa Claus, Indiana

In 1854, some people settled in a small town in southwest Indiana called Santa Fe. However, two years later when they applied to get a post office their request was rejected, since there was already Santa Fe, Indiana, which had a post office. And hence, they would need a new name.

According to one version, several meetings were held by the townspeople to decide on a name, but they could not reach a conclusion. Their last meeting of the year was to be held on Christmas Eve, during which several children started cheering for Santa Claus and taking his name. Someone thought this would be the ideal name for their town and the rest is history.

2. Intercourse, Pennsylvania

In 1814, the town of Cross Keys, in Pennsylvania’s Amish country, changed its name to Intercourse. According to one story, there was a racetrack near Cross Keys whose entrance had a sign saying ‘Entercourse.’ Locals eventually began referring to the town as Entercourse, which eventually evolved into ‘Intercourse.’

3. Idiotville, Oregon

Idiotville is a former logging community nestled northwest of Portland. The logging camp associated with it was called Ryan’s Camp. Because the camp was remotely located, locals would say that only an idiot would work there. The surrounding area started being referred to as Idiotville, a name which eventually took its position on the maps too.

4. Hot Coffee, Mississippi

In the early 1800s, those traveling in the area would often stop at an inn in southern Mississippi, where the owner Levi Davis would greet them with cookies and hot coffee. The inn adopted the name of its favourite beverage, and eventually the surrounding area also came to be known by the same name.

5. Eighty Four, Pennsylvania

Eighty Four is a tiny community nestled southwest of Pittsburgh. Originally it was called Smithville, however, Pennsylvania already had a Smithville so a different postal name was needed for the place. Since the town was located along the 84th mile of the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad line, legend suggests that is the reason why the place was renamed.

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First Published: Oct 31, 2018 08:59 IST