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home of the "Bell of Peace," they will bring the greetings of the West to the East, and to their sisters in those old historic lands beyond the sea. Tenderly and gratefuny, through all coming years, will they chime on in loyal remembrance of all those who have by tongue or pen, by generous gift or noble deed, helped woman on her upward way. To that noble company they summon each of us.
Let it be with willing heart and glad resolve that we listen to this message of the bells:
The Article by David E. Gordon will appear in the October Overland Monthly
PROVIDENCE CITY is a name that does not come through Spanish sources, but is the name given originally to HAYDEN HILL by the Reverend Harvey Haskins, when he found a mine there in 1870; the town being named from the hill.
SANTOS (Saints), TODOS SANTOS (All Saints) are common titles for ranches and early settlements; but many of these names have been changed by the American settlers.
Moraga first gave the name JESUS MARIA (Jesus, Mary) to the main river now called the SACRAMENTO (The Sacrament), giving that name to the branch. Later on the main river became known as the Sacramento, and the branch as Feather River. The future capital of the State was known at first simply as the EMBARCADERO, or landing place," where the miners left the boat to go to New Helvetia, as Sutter called his Fort. Both county and county seat take their name from the river. SACRAMENTO COUNTY was organized in 1850, and has an area of 1,007 square mues. The city became the capital of the State in 1854.
TRINIDAD, TRINITY. TRINIDAD the translation "TRINITY" originate from the discovery of Trinidad Bay, by Captain Bruno Heceta, on June 11, 1775, a date that happened to be "Trinity Sunday." The Spanish charts of the bay were misleading, and Major Reading and others thought that the river he named Trinity emptied into this bay. TRINITY COUNTY was named for the river. It was organized in 1859, and has an area of 3,276 square miles. The county seat is WEAVERVILLE, named for George Weaver.
LOS VERBAS (The Words), a colloquial name for the Bible, is the name of a town. LOS VIRGENES (The Virgins) is a general title for Nuns, but is borne by towns and ranchos.
THE INFLUENCE OF TOPOGRAPHY. 19. The influence of Mother Nature was felt by the common people, and as soon as they
left the Missions and began settling on the lands, they began to give natural names to their surroundings.
The most natural reason for naming a place so-and-so is to express the most striking features of the situation, to impress this upon the memory, and to convey it to other persons. The most obvious characteristics of any place, whether mountain, stream or valley, would be its size and shape -its relative situation high or low-its color, the kind of rock or soil, the climate it enjoys, the fruits and flowers, and the animals in the vicinity.
The importance of water was appreciated from the very first by the Spaniards, landing in what was then a desert, and every spring was sought out and given a name. Later on, when pueblos grew around the water supply, the place was known by the old name of the spring. In some instances the modern town is known by the translation of the old Spanish name. AGUA ALTA (high water) springs, received their name because they were high enough up in the hills to make it difficult in those days to carry water from them. In the desert land that they called TIERRA SECA, or "Dry Country," the early settlers were often thankful to find water enough for the house use; and one instance of this kind is recalled by the name of the town, now in the midst of an irrigated Eden, that bears the name of AGUA MANSA (house water.) Even a small supply was something to be thankful for, as the names LAS AGUITES (the little waters), and LAS CIENEGITAS (the little springs) testify. The earthen water jar that the Mexican women carry on their heads is called an "OJO," which means, literally, an "Eye," or in irrigation, "a stream as big as your eye." "An ojo of water' was a supply of water sufficient for the housenold demands, as carried in with the earthen jars. An old rancho, now covered by the city homes of thousands, was once known as the JO DE AGUA DE FIGUEROA (the ojo water of Figueroa.)
Another rancho in Santa Cruz County has the name MESA DE UJU DE AGUA (table land of the ojo of water); a neighboring rancho rejoices in thrice as much, and has the name of TRES OJOS DE AGUA (three ojos of water), but the owner of a rancho in a northern county was not so fortunate, his water supply being both scant and of poor quality, for he has given it the name OJO DE AGUA DE LA COCHE (ojo of water, fit for pigs), coche being Mexican colloquial for pigs.
California is famous for its WARM SPRINGS, HOT SPRINGS and GEYSERS, and the Spanish form of the names, AGUA CALIENTES, or OJO CALIENTE (hot spring) are common on springs, ranchos and towns.
Happy was the man who could find a glen where a brook made music among the ferns, or leaped from ledges into the pool below. Such a place was found on the rancho that was baptized AGUA CAYENDO, or "Falling Water."
AGUA DULCE (sweet water) has been translated into SWEETWATER, and is now the name of a town and district famous for its olive and citrus fruits.
CLEARWATER is appreciated in every clime, and nowhere more than in the town where it comes gushing forth from the numerous artesian wells that have made a garden out of the desert. The AGUA RICA Springs means the "Delicious Water" Springs, a truth confirmed by all who drink of them. In our semi-tropic land a drink of good, cold water, fresh from a spring, is something that all enjoy and talk about, and it is but natural that a town should proudly bear the title AGUI FRIA (cold water), or a rancho that of AGUAS FRIAS (cold waters); or another rancho that of AGUAJE DE CENTINELA (sentry flowing spring.) SPRING VALLEY is the name of several towns located in valleys noted for the abundance of springs. SULPHUR SPRINGS are sought for now as the nucleus around which to build a health resort and incidentally a fortune for the owner; but in the days of old, the Spaniard scorned this class of waters, and impatiently called them all AGUA HEDIONDA, or "stinking water." This name still clings to town and rancho, and certainly sounds better in the original than when translated. When Fremont was homeward bound across the Mohave desert he followed to the Nevada line a stream that was but little more than an artery of salt winding through the sands, and he called it the AMARGOSSA, or "bitter" river. This remarkable stream rises in Nevada, and comes into California with its waters saturated with borax, salt and soda, which it carries to its sink, which is known as Death Valley. BITTER and BITTERWATER are the names of towns that have strong mineral springs near them. 20. ARROYO. CREEK. The creeks seem to
have been named for some local peculiarity, or for some incident that occurred near them. The ARROYO CHICO rancho means "little creek" ranch; ARROYO DE ALAMEDA Rancho is the "Cottonwood Creek" ranch-for the trees along its banks; ARROYO DE LA LAGUNA is the "creek that flows from the lake;" ARROYO DEL RODEO is the rancho on "Round-up Creek," where the cattle were gathered for branding every year; and ARROYO GRANDE is town and ranch on the "Big Creek" that comes from the Santa Lucia mountains.
It has been said of California that "the bottoms of the rivers are on top," and that it seems strange when driving over a dry bed of sand to hear that you are driving over a river; but such is the fact, for the life-giving waters are there ready to come forth when one opens the way with well or ditch to tap the underflow. ARROYO SECO means "dry creek," as RIO SECO means "dry river," but that does not mean that the ranchos or towns that have these names are without a water suply; it simply means that wise nature has covered the precious waters with a sand cloak that protects them from being wasted by the
AZULE SPRINGS (Blue Springs) have been tinted with one of Nature's mysterious dyes until they seem to carry a bit of the skies in solution.
THE DESERT-from the Latin "desertum," meaning abandoned-have springs here and there hid in the shadow of some great rock in the weary land. Some have been dug by travelers and are known as DESERT WELLS; some have been cleaned out, and the precious water supply protected by such means as the traveler possesses, and received their names accordingly, as BARREL SPRING, or BOX SPRING, which served also to mark the locality. The BIG PALM SPRINGS where huge desert palms, or giant yuccas (cereus giganteus) grow.
BUCKHORN SPRINGS were marked for years by antlers fastened to a board, so that they could be seen for a long distance the burning sands. The EL PASC WELLS are near the summit of a pass through the foothills; INDIAN SPRINGS were a favorite resort of the aborigines hunting the chuckawalla-a huge desert lizard; and the blackened cone of an extinct VOLCANO marks the site of a spring in the desert, and gives a town a name in the mountain country.
21. LAKES. LAGUNA. The mountains of California rival Switzerland in the grandeur and beauty of her lakes; while the deserts can show a greater variety of strange and valuable lakes than any other region in the world. LAGUNA or LA LAGUNA (the lake), or LAGUNITA (little lake), are very common names for towns as well as
ranchos, and are as common as LAKE, LAGOON and LITTLE LAKE, the English equivalents. It is impossible to give a list of the lakes with English names, and it is not necessary, as most of their meanings are evident to all; but some of those with foreign names are worth translating. LAGUNA DE LOS CALABASAS (Pumpkin Lake), is the name of a rancho that may be the place where all the stories of California pumpkins had their origin. One wonders if the owner raised any that weighed less than a ton apiece; or if they grew so fast that when he planted the seeds he had to run to keep the vines from catching and smothering him. The LAGUNA DE LOS PALOS COLORADOS (the lake of the redwoods), still slumbers beneath the shade of the giants of the forest, as it did centuries ago. LAGUNA DEL REY (Lake of the King) tells a story of remembrance and loyalty to the Viceroy who opened this land to settlement. LAGUNO SECO, or LA LAGUNA SECA (the dry lake) is a name that is very common on the Mohave and Colorado deserts, and not unknown in other parts of the State. On the desert are "dry lakes" that are the pools or lowest depressions in what was once the bed of a great ocean. They have no outlet, and in them has concentrated for ages the saline minerals in the soil of the deserts. To-day they look like fields of snow in the distance, from the deposits of salt, sodas or borax that fill them; a source of wealth to the State that is just beginning to be appreciated. LAKE COUNTY, a region crowded with charming lakes was organized in 1861, and has an area of 1,332 square miles. The county seat is LAKEPORT, once known as FORBESTOWN, as it was built on the farm of Mr. Forbes. LAKE PUNTO is one of the mixed titles that are becoming only too common; why not say Lake Point, or Laguno Punto? LAKE TARTARUS is a lake of boiling mud, capable of inflicting sufferings as great as those of the mythological person whose name it bears.
LAND. (ACAMPO.) (MESA.) (LLANO.) (VALLE.)
22. Next in importance to the water supply was the question of land of good quality, and level enough to cultivate readily. As the Spaniards spread out from the pueblos they sought the valleys and plains, and these are full of homelike names such as ACAMPO (the pasture lands), or simply ALMANSA (the plain), or САМРО, EL which has the same meaning; while CANADA LORGA O' VERDE (large, or green valley), is more pretentious. EL MONTE is a favorite name, and means primarily "a mountain," but it is used almost as often in its secondary sense of "a wooded place." MESA, LA MESA, or as it has been Americanized LAMESA, means LLANO and LLANADO
a "table land;" mean the same
"a tract of level ground." LLANO DE BUENA VISTA is the "Plain with a good view;" while LLANO SECO is the "dry plain" that needs irrigating. РАМРА, meaning "plain' in the sense that we speak of "the plains of Nebraska," is not often found. VALLE (valley), VALLECITO (little valley), and VALLE VISTA (valley view), are almost as common as our own name, VALLEY. VEGA and the diminutive form VEGALA, meaning "a level tract of fruitful land," are both common.
MOUNTAINS. SIERRA. HEIGHT. 23. In a region composed almost wholly of mountain ridges, with intervening valleys and canyons of all kinds, it is but natural that there should arise a descriptive nomenclature of corresponding variety. What is more appropriate than SIERRA to mark the prominent feature of jagged ranges elevated above the normal height, and showing a sky line of ragged peaks, rough as the edges of a great saw, for "sierra" is from the Latin word meaning "saw,' and may be translated "serrated," or "sawtoothed." Add to this the fact that their towering pinnacles are covered with snow the year around, and one has the only name that could well be applied to them, and that is NEVADA, or "snowy." Topographical names are generally natural, containing a condensed description, or rude verbal picture, of the object, as SUMMIT, FERNDALE or BIG MOUNT. GLEN serves as a description of almost all varieties of narrow valley; while DALE means simply a flat stretch of land at the bottom of the hills.
ALPINE COUNTY is the appropriate name of a region that lies in the heart of the Sierra Nevada Mountains, an area of 575 square miles of scenery that is not surpassed by any that tourists rush to abroad. Markleville is the county seat of this county, which was organized in 1863. Towns in several counties have the name ALPINE, signifying their elevation or cool climate.
SUMMIT. The word SUMMIT is used alone, or in combinations like SUMMITVILLE, by over twenty towns, on account of their position, or elevation; and the word DIVIDE is used almost as frequently.
SIERRA (Latin "serra," a "saw") is a common name for rancho and town. SIERRA COUNTY was named for the SIERRA NEVADA Mountains (snowy saw toothed range), and was organized in 1854. Its area is 910 square miles, and the county seat is DOWNIEVILLE.
SIZE. BIG. LITTLE. DEEP.
24 Next in importance to height comes size, and the big things of course lead all the rest. The farmers have their BIG MEADOWS; the miners have innumerable BIG BARS, around which camps and towns have sprung up, and retained the old name; while the BIG FLATS, or wide places where the canyon walls have opened out and given a valley, are claimed by both miner and farmer.
LONG BAR is another favorite with the miner; and it was at a place bearing this name in El Dorado County that John C. Heenan lived, the one who was known later as the "Benicia Boy," and who fought Sayers in England.
The Spaniards felt the influence of their surroundings, after going beyond the immediate influence of the Missions, and have left many names indicative of this fact; such as LA HONDA (the deep); LA GRANDE (the grand); LOS HUECOS (the hollows); MESA (elevated table land); MESA GRANDE (big table land); CERRO (a hill); and CERRILLOS and CERRITOS (little hills.) CERRO GORDO is a "fat hill" or one "large around;" a name given to a mountain near Owens Lake by J. C. Fremont, on his homeward trip in 1844. CERRO DE LAS POSAS is the "hill of the seat," for one would wish to sit down and rest many times before reaching the top. CERRO ROMUALDO is a hill bearing the name of the owner of the rancho it is on. Side by side, and contrasting sharply with the great, is ever the small, and this holds true of as well as all else, for one finds the diminutives scattered everywhere. CHIQUITA is the name of town, lake and peak, and means "very small;" CRESCITO is "little summits;" LOS PENASQUITOS means "the small cliffs;" LOS VALLECITOS, "the little valleys;" and MONTECITO the little mountain."
25. Next in importance to size is that of position, or location, that has some marked peculiarity, such as LOMO, which means "a hill rising from the mist of a plain;" or LOMA ALTA, "a high hill rising from the midst of level ground. LOMA LINDA was the "boundary hill" that marked the corner of a great land grant; while LOMA
PRIETA was the "dark hill;" and LOMA VISTO the 'lookout hill," which they climbed for the view, or else to see if enemies were coming. LOMITAS means "small hills in a plain," as does LOMERIAS, but MUERTAS means "graves," the "little hills of the dead."
GLEN in the original Anglo-Saxon is a diminutive term meaning "small valley," and is used in that sense to-day. GLEN COUNTY, a district that is noted for the number and beauty of its mountain nooks, was organized in 1891, and has an area of 1,248 square miles. The county seat is named WILLOWS. The weary immigrants, with animals gaunt from the great deserts, were delighted with the mining district they found in the midst of a great grassy valley, and the name GRASS VALLEY will remain as long as the State does.
The sharp contrast between the open valleys and the narrow canyons where everything was shut in and boxed up by precipitous walls, led to the name EL CAJON (literally "the box"), a term applied in general to many mountain canyons. MEER (sea), and DELMAR (at the sea), are titles borne by places within the sound of the surf.
25. Color plays an important part in furnishing names, and the greatest favorite seems to be BLUE, for there are towns, bluffs, canyons, mines, gulches, ravines and creeks with this name. Many of them owe their name to tne blue cement gravels that filled the ancient river channels, and were SO rich in gold that the miners eagerly sought for a BLUE LEAD or BLUE CEMENT mine. GREEN BRAE is the "green glen;" LA BARRANCA COLORADO is the "red canyon," the term barranca being applied to canyons that are especially deep, or hard to get down into and out of. There is a range of mountains on the Mohave desert where the rocks are colored red, brown, black and SO green, yellow and mottled
that the miners gave it the name of the CALICO RANGE.
BLUE RIDGE and BLUE ROCK ceived their names from the blue shales in their neighborhood. NEVADA COUNTY (snowy county) takes its name from the snow-clad summits of the Sierra Nevada. It was organized in 1850, and has an area of 958 square miles. Nevada City is the county seat. The snow white foam of the waters gave the name to NEVADA FALLS.
PIEDRA (stone) and PIEDRA BLANCA (white stone), are the names of towns and ranchos; and PINTADA means the "spotted mountain."
RED. The Jura-Trias rocks that cover large areas in the State are noted for their brilliant red strata, and for the red soils