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La Floridiana by Will Moriaty
   Now in our fifth calendar year
    PCR #241  (Vol. 5, No. 45)  This edition is for the week of November 1--7, 2004.

What’s In A Name? A Look at the Origin of Names of Florida’s Towns and Counties N to P
 by Will Moriaty
"The Incredibles"
 by Mike Smith
At the Late Night Halloween Horror Picture Show 2004....The Horror Films....The Special Guests....The Filmmakers....Fans/Friends
 by Andy Lalino
Brian Wilson's SMILE, reviewed
  by Terence Nuzum
The Voting Day Victory....What's Next For Creature Feature....AOL To Cut Jobs
 by Brandon Jones
Bush - Head To The Mountains
 by Matt Drinnenberg
Election Fallout....Vinnie Come Home....Music Notes....Stamp of Approval....Scary Movie Moments....Speaking of Scary....Passing On....Meet The Beatles, Part 41
 by Mike Smith
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What’s In A Name? A Look at the Origin of Names of Florida’s Towns and Counties N to P

"La Floridiana" continues its tireless mission to provide to you, our valued reader, just what those Florida town and county names mean...

NAPLES (Town of): The county seat of Collier County, this town was named after Naples, Italy.

NARANJA (Town of): Located in Miami-Dade County, established in 1905 by M.L. Albury, the original name proposed for this town was Silver Palm. As there was already a Silver Palm nearby, the name decided upon was Naranja, which is Spanish for orange, in reference to the numerous groves located nearby.

NASSAU (County of): This is Florida's tenth county and possibly either named after the principal town in the Bahamas, as many emigrants came to this section of Florida during the British occupation, or it may have been named for the German Duchy of Nassau. The county was established December 29, 1824.

NEW PORT RICHEY (Town of): Located in Pasco County, The town was named for nearby Fort Richey, which was settled by A.M. Richey, a merchant and postmaster.

OCALA (Town of): Although the origin of this name is suspect, the region of Florida in present day Marion County that Spanish explorer Hernando de Soto presumably passed through in 1539 was the Timucuan Indian province known as Ocali. Originally the site of Fort King, the name was changed to Ocala in 1847 by someone familiar with the Indian and Spanish history of the area. Ocala is the county seat.

OKALOOSA (County of): Established on June 13, 1915, Florida's fifty-second county may have had its name derived from either the Choctaw Indian words meaning "black water", or "pleasant place."

OKEECHOBEE (Town/County of): Florida's forty-seventh county was established on May 8, 1917. The town was originally known as "Tantie", after Tantie Huckabee, a schoolteacher from one of the Carolinas. The town and the county are named after the adjacent Lake Okeechobee which is the second largest fresh water body located entirely within the United States. The word itself is derived from the Nitchiti Indian words "oki", meaning "water" and chobi" meaning "big".

OLDSMAR (Town of): Located in Pinellas County, this community was established in 1916 by the Reolds Farm Company, headed by Michigan automobile manufacturer R.E. Olds.

OPA LOCKA (Town of): Located in Miami-Dade County, this town, which was originally developed by famed aviator Glenn H. Curtiss, comes from the Seminole Indian words "opiliwa" meaning "swamp" and "lako" meaning "big",

ORLANDO (Town of): The county seat of Orange County has several possible origins to its name. Judge James Speer who settled there from South Carolina in 1854 and became a State Senator took the name from a character in a Shakespeare novel named "As You Like It". Another possibility is that a Mr. Orlando was leading an ox caravan to Tampa and passed away from colic at this location. The third and most accepted is that the city was named after Orlando Reeves who lost his life in an Indian ambush. A memorial plaque erected in his honor in 1939 by students of Cherokee Junior High School still resides at Lake Eola Park in the city's downtown.

OSCEOLA (County of): Florida's fortieth county was established on May 12, 1887 named in honor of Seminole Indian Chief Osceola.

PAHOKEE (Town of): Located in Palm Beach County, and incorporated in 1922, the name is Hitchiti Indian meaning "grass water", a reference to the nearby Everglades. On Taylor's map of 1839, the name of the Everglades was referred to as Pay-ha-o-kee.

PALATKA (Town of): The county seat of Putnam County was established as a trading post in 1821. It was previously known as Buena Vista, Gay's Place, Bush Post and Fort Shannon. Its current name is derived from the Seminole Indian word "pilotakita" meaning "ferry", "ford" or "crossing", probably due to its close proximity to the St. Johns River. Initially the town was spelled "Pilatka", but this confused postmasters due to the spelling of a town further down the river known as Picolata

PALM BEACH (Town/County of): The forty-seventh county in Florida was named after the abundant growth of palms along the area's beaches. It was established on April 30, 1909.

PALMETTO (Town of): Located in Manatee County, the town, which was established in 1885, was named after the abundant growth of the native Saw Palmetto. Palmetto (or "palmito" to be precise) in Spanish means, "little palm tree".

PASCO (County of): Florida's forty-fifth county was established on June 2, 1887 and named after Florida House of Representatives and United States Senator Samuel Pasco.

PASS-A-GRILLE BEACH (Town of): Located in Pinellas County, this coastal community located on Long Key in St. Pete Beach was incorporated in 1911, but seen on maps as early as 1841. The name is derived from the French "Passe-aux-Grilleurs", as fishermen would often stop here and cook or grill their meals.

PENNSUCO(Town of): This town was established in 1919, and named in honor of the Pennsylvania Sugar Company, which had planned to raise sugar cane in this Miami-Dade County town.

PINELLAS (County of): Florida's forty-eighth county was established on May 23, 1911. The area was known to the Spanish as the "Punta Pinal" or "Point of Pines". The present name was derived from that.

PLANT CITY (Town of): Located in Hillsborough County, the first Anglo-Saxon community at this site was established in 1846. It was originally known as Fort Fraser, and later changed to Cork by the town's Irish postmaster. In 1883 Henry Bradley Plant constructed his Sanford to Tampa railroad line known as the Atlantic Coast Line and influential resident J.T. Evers named the city in Plant's honor. The town was incorporated in 1885.

POLK (County of): The county was named after President James K. Polk, is Florida's thirty-ninth county, and was established on February 8, 1861.

PRINCETON (Town of): Located in Miami-Dade County, the town, established in 1904 by the Model Land Company, was originally known as Modello. In 1905 Gaston Drake named it for his alma mater, Princeton University.

PUNTA GORDA(Town of): Originally known as" Trabue", the name is Spanish meaning "wide point" due to the land jutting out into Charlotte Harbor at the point where the town resides.

PUTNAM (County of): Established on January 13, 1849, Florida's twenty-eighth county was named after Benjamin A. Putnam, a prominent attorney and officer in the Second Seminole War.

"La Floridiana" is ©2004 by William Moriaty.  Webpage design and all graphics herein (except where otherwise noted) are creations of Nolan B. Canova.  All contents of Nolan's Pop Culture Review are ©2004 by Nolan B. Canova.