Interesting how names of towns change. We live in Lacey a suburb of Olympia Washington, the states capital. It was originally called Woodland after settlers Isaac and Catherine Wood. It was consolidated with Chambers Creek in the 1950’s and renamed Lacey for attorney and developer O.C. Lacey.
A sister city, Tumwater was originally New Market.
I recently read a book set in WWII and the author inserted a bit of history of London’s name. She said the Celtic name for London was Londinion and the Roman name was Londinium. This was all it took to get my interest and I went online to research it.
According to Wikipedia, there is no consensus on what the name Londinium means. Romans commonly adopted native names for new settlements and a common theory is that the name derives from a hypothetical Celtic placename, Londinion. Lond in Celtic means ‘wild’.
Putting different theory’s into play Londinium would mean “the settlement on the wide river”. And from what I’ve read the river was pretty wild.
As near as I could find the name London sort of evolved from the longer version of the name.
It makes me wonder how many of our towns and cities have retained their original names. I can see how they might change if they were taken over by another culture like in war but in our case Lacey and Tumwater have never experienced anything like that so why? Maybe in Lacey’s case, Chambers Creek joining them might have played a part, but that still leaves why New Market was changed to Tumwater.
London seems to have only shortened their name, which I can understand. But I’m still not sure I would have supported Lacey and Tumwater. Maybe it’s a good thing I wasn’t around or in Lacey’s case to young to know or care.