Could you help me create place names for my fictional county in Ohio? I need to invent names for tiny, rural villages and a river. I have two names for towns already. The county seat is Wellesville and a village is Barton. I’m finding the river to be the tricky one.
Rivers in Ohio have Native American names or anglicized versions of words from Native American languages, Ohio being a prime example. Other rivers in the state are Muskingum, Sandusky, Scioto, and Olentangy. I want a name that fits in with the real rivers.
I’d love to hear your ideas!
Welaka, Fruitland, San Mateo, Satsuma, Georgetown
Welaka sounds like what I’m looking for. Thanks for the idea!
For villages…Settler’s Gap, or Oaktown, or Hidden Spring, or Hazelton, or Witches’ End. For your river, Washeekin, or Seneca River, or the Hasanowe River.
All those sound great! There’s a Senecaville Lake, so a Seneca River would not be out of place.
I don’t know much about natives in the US – I don’t live there, but here’s a trick: pick a characteristic or adjective of the town and search that word or two in that tribe’s tongue. For example, if there are many oak trees and a small river, check what oak trees were called, and what small rivers were called. You can combine both and make one word, or you can keep it as two. And then you also have the river’s name from that. Or, what’s something about the river you can use? is it muddy? deep? wide, calm, fast, plentiful?
That’s a wonderful idea! Thank you!
Would Wapasha or Minnehaha work?
Wapasha could work. It sounds like Wapakoneta, the town Neil Armstrong was born in. Thanks!
The kids and I JUST read Neil Armstrong’s biography! It’s interesting to see how you tweak it to resemble a real place but be its own too.