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Author Topic: Counties referred to like cities  (Read 1957 times)

snowc

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Re: Counties referred to like cities
« Reply #50 on: April 05, 2021, 02:31:03 PM »

What's interesting about Rockland is that the five towns that comprise the county really don't mean much, and are barely used when referring to locations within the county. I suspect Westchester might be similar. For example, if you asked me to name five locations in Rockland County, none of them would be the actual town names. I'd probably pick five of the "hamlet and census-designated place(s)" (as Google calls them). I had never even heard of the town of Ramapo until a few years ago, and was stunned to learn that it's one of the most populous towns in the state. Similar situation with Clarkstown.

Yes, the reason is very much the same for both. And it's very much a Downstate thing—you'll find it as well, and perhaps even more so, in Nassau and Suffolk. Heck, the town of Hempstead is the second-largest municipality in all of New York, but the towns and even many of the villages are almost unknown in these counties. Of course, in this case you don't need to say "Nassau, NY" or "Suffolk, NY" because you can just say "Long Island, NY" (and people definitely do say that, very often).

The difference, I think, between Rockland and Westchester is that the cities and villages of Westchester are more distinct and better-known locally. It's only on a national scale where the name "Westchester" carries more recognition that White Plains or Mount Kisco or even Yonkers. Whereas in Rockland, even the county name isn't quite universally known, so it can't stand on its own the way Westchester can.

Quote
Your last point about this being more common in the Mid-Atlantic is an interesting one. It does seem be a phenomenon that mostly occurs in the suburbs. As such, the best Upstate candidates would probably be Saratoga and Niagara - I have actually heard the latter in everyday conversation, as in "We're going to Niagara today" - perhaps the prominence of Niagara Falls makes "Niagara" understandable for use in reference to the Falls and/or the area as a whole.

Those are good examples, the only difficulty being that it's hard to tell if "Saratoga" and "Niagara" are being used as the actual county names, or merely as abbreviations for Saratoga Springs and Niagara Falls. I think the former is more likely in Saratoga County, since it has considerable suburban area that is part of the Capital District and yet distinct from Saratoga Springs. Still, the test would be whether you could tell an Ohioan or Texan that you're from "Saratoga, NY" and have them understand that you mean Clifton Park and not Saratoga Springs. (For Niagara, I am sure that you would always evoke the city on the falls, not North Tonawanda or Lockport, in that scenario.)

Conversely, my experience in MD is that people generally do a good job of differentiating between Baltimore County & Baltimore City.  (It helps that the various suburbs in the county are usually the main reference points, as opposed to the county as a whole.)

I have no doubt that Baltimore County would be a very likely candidate, if only it had a name different from the city. (On the other hand, Montgomery and Prince George's counties don't seem to qualify, so maybe not.)

It's not necessarily always clear which one is being referred to, which is where it gets a little tricky. If someone from Bel Air says they're going to Baltimore, but their destination is actually in the county, not the city, does that mean it counts as an example, or is it just dismissed as a technicality? Kind of depends on the starting point, too. I'd certainly lean towards calling it a technicality for any starting point beyond Baltimore's own exurbs (and apply the same logic to St. Louis).

If I heard that, I'd be positive that they were referring to a location in the greater city of Baltimore, irrespective of any political boundary. Imagine introducing yourself at an out-of-town social function. "I'm from Baltimore, Maryland." Would you ever say that expecting the other person to understand that you're not from Baltimore itself, but from some separate and distinct place?

What about Inland Empire? It borrows from multiple counties but doesn’t really have a set city center (Riverside?!)

It's not a county, so it would be a different phenomenon (you'd never say "Inland Empire County" in the first place, so the absence of "county" has no significance). But there are certainly regional names that can be used in the City, State format—see also "Long Island, NY" above. In that respect it might indeed be similar.
Almost all the cities in NYS are named after major cities and people. Homer -> Homer (famous greek mythologist). Syracuse NY -> Syracuse IT
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snowc

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Re: Counties referred to like cities
« Reply #51 on: April 05, 2021, 02:32:00 PM »

So on the news this evening, the anchor handed off to a reporter on the scene in "Westchester, New York"—that is, somewhere in Westchester County. It occurred to me that it's not uncommon for Westchester to be referred to this way, as if it's the name of a city or town. But when I tried to think of another county where this is the case, I couldn't.

Are there other counties that are commonly referred to by only their "first" name in a City, State format, without appending "county" (or "parish" or whatever)? I thought of Miami-Dade as one potential answer, but I'm not sure how prevalent that usage is.

(We would, of course, exclude cases where a city or town has the same name as its county, like Los Angeles or the Bronx.)

Miami-Dade.

** Did not read the OP **
how did you do that?  :wow: :confused:
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webny99

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Re: Counties referred to like cities
« Reply #52 on: April 05, 2021, 02:45:09 PM »

... Are there other counties that are commonly referred to by only their "first" name in a City, State format, without appending "county" (or "parish" or whatever)? I thought of Miami-Dade as one potential answer, but I'm not sure how prevalent that usage is. ...

Miami-Dade.

** Did not read the OP **
how did you do that?  :wow: :confused:

If you're referring to the moving text, the code is visible in the quote. It's this:

Code: [Select]
[move]moving text[/move]
« Last Edit: April 05, 2021, 02:47:59 PM by webny99 »
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snowc

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Re: Counties referred to like cities
« Reply #53 on: April 05, 2021, 02:46:04 PM »

... Are there other counties that are commonly referred to by only their "first" name in a City, State format, without appending "county" (or "parish" or whatever)? I thought of Miami-Dade as one potential answer, but I'm not sure how prevalent that usage is. ...

Miami-Dade.

** Did not read the OP **
how did you do that?  :wow: :confused:

If you're referring to the moving text, the code is visible in the text box you see when quoting.

Code: [Select]
[move]moving text[/move]
Now it works. Thanks!
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Evan_Th

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Re: Counties referred to like cities
« Reply #54 on: April 05, 2021, 04:14:10 PM »

Durham County -> Durham NC
That doesn't count.  The city of Durham in that county covers more than half the county.
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empirestate

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Re: Counties referred to like cities
« Reply #55 on: April 06, 2021, 05:43:19 PM »

It seems that my message was unclear. My thinking was that this type of thing would be rare or ambiguous for most counties in California (including Napa, Sonoma, Marin, and Orange and others) because of the eponymous names (both inside and outside the county). Everyone whom I have ever met from Barstow, says that they are from Barstow, rather than "San Bernardino" (with or without "County"), at least if it seems that you have anything remotely like a California accent. Everyone whom I know from Orange County says that they are from Orange County or "Oci" (often without naming their "Naninani Beach" or "Indicame Bay" city), even to those who don't have a California accent.

People from San Francisco County are allowed unambiguously not to say "county" because the city and county are coextensive. People who live in Los Angeles County often just say "Elei" even if they don't exactly live inside the city unless they specifically want to identify as being from the San Fernando Valley or Pasadena. People who live in Sacramento and Fresno counties but not actually in the cities often do the same sort of cheat. If you seem to have a California accent, they may tell you "Clovis" or "Elk Grove" in order to be more specific.

Well, unclear or not, the good news is your message was just what I thought it was. :-)

Yes, people from Barstow don't say they're from San Bernardino, CA. But if they did, it would be an example of what I'm describing. Likewise, if people from Napa County or Sonoma County—but well outside of the cities of Napa or Sonoma—would say that they're from Napa, CA or Sonoma, CA, as Chris seems to suggest they would, it might also be an example.

In other words, the presence of a city inside an eponymous county isn't, by itself, a disqualification. It's when you really can't distinguish which one they're referring to, because it's the same piece of territory.

What's interesting about Rockland is that the five towns that comprise the county really don't mean much, and are barely used when referring to locations within the county. I suspect Westchester might be similar. For example, if you asked me to name five locations in Rockland County, none of them would be the actual town names. I'd probably pick five of the "hamlet and census-designated place(s)" (as Google calls them). I had never even heard of the town of Ramapo until a few years ago, and was stunned to learn that it's one of the most populous towns in the state. Similar situation with Clarkstown.

Yes, the reason is very much the same for both. And it's very much a Downstate thing—you'll find it as well, and perhaps even more so, in Nassau and Suffolk. Heck, the town of Hempstead is the second-largest municipality in all of New York, but the towns and even many of the villages are almost unknown in these counties. Of course, in this case you don't need to say "Nassau, NY" or "Suffolk, NY" because you can just say "Long Island, NY" (and people definitely do say that, very often).

The difference, I think, between Rockland and Westchester is that the cities and villages of Westchester are more distinct and better-known locally. It's only on a national scale where the name "Westchester" carries more recognition that White Plains or Mount Kisco or even Yonkers. Whereas in Rockland, even the county name isn't quite universally known, so it can't stand on its own the way Westchester can.

Quote
Your last point about this being more common in the Mid-Atlantic is an interesting one. It does seem be a phenomenon that mostly occurs in the suburbs. As such, the best Upstate candidates would probably be Saratoga and Niagara - I have actually heard the latter in everyday conversation, as in "We're going to Niagara today" - perhaps the prominence of Niagara Falls makes "Niagara" understandable for use in reference to the Falls and/or the area as a whole.

Those are good examples, the only difficulty being that it's hard to tell if "Saratoga" and "Niagara" are being used as the actual county names, or merely as abbreviations for Saratoga Springs and Niagara Falls. I think the former is more likely in Saratoga County, since it has considerable suburban area that is part of the Capital District and yet distinct from Saratoga Springs. Still, the test would be whether you could tell an Ohioan or Texan that you're from "Saratoga, NY" and have them understand that you mean Clifton Park and not Saratoga Springs. (For Niagara, I am sure that you would always evoke the city on the falls, not North Tonawanda or Lockport, in that scenario.)

Conversely, my experience in MD is that people generally do a good job of differentiating between Baltimore County & Baltimore City.  (It helps that the various suburbs in the county are usually the main reference points, as opposed to the county as a whole.)

I have no doubt that Baltimore County would be a very likely candidate, if only it had a name different from the city. (On the other hand, Montgomery and Prince George's counties don't seem to qualify, so maybe not.)

It's not necessarily always clear which one is being referred to, which is where it gets a little tricky. If someone from Bel Air says they're going to Baltimore, but their destination is actually in the county, not the city, does that mean it counts as an example, or is it just dismissed as a technicality? Kind of depends on the starting point, too. I'd certainly lean towards calling it a technicality for any starting point beyond Baltimore's own exurbs (and apply the same logic to St. Louis).

If I heard that, I'd be positive that they were referring to a location in the greater city of Baltimore, irrespective of any political boundary. Imagine introducing yourself at an out-of-town social function. "I'm from Baltimore, Maryland." Would you ever say that expecting the other person to understand that you're not from Baltimore itself, but from some separate and distinct place?

What about Inland Empire? It borrows from multiple counties but doesn’t really have a set city center (Riverside?!)

It's not a county, so it would be a different phenomenon (you'd never say "Inland Empire County" in the first place, so the absence of "county" has no significance). But there are certainly regional names that can be used in the City, State format—see also "Long Island, NY" above. In that respect it might indeed be similar.
Almost all the cities in NYS are named after major cities and people. Homer -> Homer (famous greek mythologist). Syracuse NY -> Syracuse IT

Now this message, I'm afraid, is unclear, as I'm not seeing how this follows from the quoted material! :-o :D
« Last Edit: April 06, 2021, 05:45:41 PM by empirestate »
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zachary_amaryllis

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Re: Counties referred to like cities
« Reply #56 on: April 06, 2021, 06:32:32 PM »

Gloucester County in Hampton Roads is generally referred to as just Gloucester, as if it were a contiguous city (with the Gloucester Point or Gloucester Courthouse areas requiring specific usage).

York County is always referred to as a county, but its small size and lack of distinct identifiable communities save for Yorktown make it feel like a single city. (Everything south of the Naval Weapons Station uses a Yorktown mailing address IIRC)

isle of wight is like that... lived there for... a minute. most people equate isle of wight with smithfield (apparently pronounced 'smiffuld')
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roadman65

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Re: Counties referred to like cities
« Reply #57 on: April 07, 2021, 12:32:57 PM »

Doesn’t every large city refer to its surrounding counties as name only?

Orlando, Florida you hear Orange, Osceola, and Seminole.
Tampa, Florida you hear Pinnelas, Pasco, and Hillsborough.
Miami you hear Miami-Dade and Broward.

NYC you hear Westchester, Rockland, Nassau, and Suffolk.  Then of course NJ itself is treated by New York as a city rather than its counties in the Metro.
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Re: Counties referred to like cities
« Reply #58 on: April 07, 2021, 12:40:50 PM »

Doesn’t every large city refer to its surrounding counties as name only?

I haven't heard this in Chicago, except possibly with DuPage County.  I've never heard anyone refer to just Will, Kane, or Lake.
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empirestate

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Re: Counties referred to like cities
« Reply #59 on: April 08, 2021, 12:11:47 AM »

Doesn’t every large city refer to its surrounding counties as name only?

Many certainly do, for brevity's sake. But we're not looking for that, we're looking for "Name, State" (so "Pinellas, Florida" or "Nassau, New York"). The "state" component can be implied, but it would still be a case where that's a logical construction.

So if we take the original example, it's something like "We take you now to our reporter on the scene in Westchester, New York." Another version of that could be, "Did you grow up in New York City?" "No, I grew up in Westchester." This would be understandable even to an out-of-state listener; so, there's an assumption that this is something more than just local shorthand.
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jayhawkco

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Re: Counties referred to like cities
« Reply #60 on: April 08, 2021, 12:34:42 AM »

Doesn’t every large city refer to its surrounding counties as name only?

No.  Hence the thread.  No one in Denver says Arapahoe, Douglas, Jefferson, Adams, etc.

JeffCo is the only one that even has a shorthand.

Chris

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Re: Counties referred to like cities
« Reply #61 on: April 08, 2021, 01:00:14 AM »

"Salt Lake" is probably the closest you'll get to something like this in Utah, but I feel like that's more a reference to the urban valley than the county itself. What it is not is a reference to the city proper - that is, if I live up in Park City or something and I tell someone I'm driving down to Salt Lake tomorrow, that basically means anywhere below 5000 ft. elevation in Salt Lake County.

Now that I think about it some more, I wonder if Cache qualifies. I want to say I've heard some people refer to the areas around Logan as simply "Cache", and you'd certainly be understood if you did that... but just "Cache County" or more likely "the Cache Valley" would be what you'd hear in casual conversation.

jayhawkco

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Re: Counties referred to like cities
« Reply #62 on: April 08, 2021, 01:11:03 AM »

"Salt Lake" is probably the closest you'll get to something like this in Utah, but I feel like that's more a reference to the urban valley than the county itself. What it is not is a reference to the city proper - that is, if I live up in Park City or something and I tell someone I'm driving down to Salt Lake tomorrow, that basically means anywhere below 5000 ft. elevation in Salt Lake County.

Now that I think about it some more, I wonder if Cache qualifies. I want to say I've heard some people refer to the areas around Logan as simply "Cache", and you'd certainly be understood if you did that... but just "Cache County" or more likely "the Cache Valley" would be what you'd hear in casual conversation.

But it is a reference to the metro.  I don't live in Denver, but I live in Denver.  Same story. 

Chris

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Re: Counties referred to like cities
« Reply #63 on: April 08, 2021, 07:41:15 AM »

"Salt Lake" is probably the closest you'll get to something like this in Utah, but I feel like that's more a reference to the urban valley than the county itself. What it is not is a reference to the city proper - that is, if I live up in Park City or something and I tell someone I'm driving down to Salt Lake tomorrow, that basically means anywhere below 5000 ft. elevation in Salt Lake County.

Now that I think about it some more, I wonder if Cache qualifies. I want to say I've heard some people refer to the areas around Logan as simply "Cache", and you'd certainly be understood if you did that... but just "Cache County" or more likely "the Cache Valley" would be what you'd hear in casual conversation.
Hm.  Not sure how common it is to refer to Logan as Cache.  My father spent a year at Utah State and my brother got married there.  I think I've heard more people just refer to the area as "Logan."

That said, years ago, I biked a metric (100 km) in the area and it was called the Cache Valley something or other.  Also, places like Smithfield are growing to the point where they are developing their own distinct identities.  Smithfield's getting their own Mormon temple now...
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zachary_amaryllis

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Re: Counties referred to like cities
« Reply #64 on: April 08, 2021, 07:43:40 AM »

Doesn’t every large city refer to its surrounding counties as name only?

No.  Hence the thread.  No one in Denver says Arapahoe, Douglas, Jefferson, Adams, etc.

JeffCo is the only one that even has a shorthand.

Chris

what about broomfield? the actual 'city' of broomfield i don't think is that big... but the 'county' i think is often referred to like a city... or did they make it a city/county? i just remember it was sorta cobbled together from chunks of 4 different counties, because some people were having to to to greeley to register their cars before.

denver's weird.
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jayhawkco

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Re: Counties referred to like cities
« Reply #65 on: April 08, 2021, 08:49:15 AM »

Doesn’t every large city refer to its surrounding counties as name only?

No.  Hence the thread.  No one in Denver says Arapahoe, Douglas, Jefferson, Adams, etc.

JeffCo is the only one that even has a shorthand.

Chris

what about broomfield? the actual 'city' of broomfield i don't think is that big... but the 'county' i think is often referred to like a city... or did they make it a city/county? i just remember it was sorta cobbled together from chunks of 4 different counties, because some people were having to to to greeley to register their cars before.

denver's weird.

If it's a combined city and county (like Broomfield, Denver, etc.) then you're always referring to the city.

Chris

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Re: Counties referred to like cities
« Reply #66 on: April 09, 2021, 12:11:11 AM »

Currituck County, NC is sometimes referred to as "Currituck", without noting a specific town located there (Moyock, Barco, etc). The same is also true of Camden, NC (both town and county).
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Re: Counties referred to like cities
« Reply #67 on: April 09, 2021, 09:01:25 PM »

Hm.  Not sure how common it is to refer to Logan as Cache.  My father spent a year at Utah State and my brother got married there.  I think I've heard more people just refer to the area as "Logan."

That said, years ago, I biked a metric (100 km) in the area and it was called the Cache Valley something or other.  Also, places like Smithfield are growing to the point where they are developing their own distinct identities.  Smithfield's getting their own Mormon temple now...


I'm not sure - I spent two glorious nights at the Logan, Utah Econo Lodge in 2009 and came in second place at the AAG Geography Bowl at Utah State in Logan, Utah and everybody there at the time called the greater area "Cache Valley"

 


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