NC Gazetteer, 2nd Edition: A Dictionary of Tar Heel Places and Their History
The North Carolina Gazetteer first appeared to wide acclaim in 1968 and has remained an essential reference for anyone with a serious interest in the Tar Heel State, from historians to journalists, from creative writers to urban planners, from backpackers to armchair travelers.
This revised and expanded edition adds approximately 1,200 new entries, bringing to nearly 21,000 the number of North Carolina cities, towns, crossroads, waterways, mountains, and other places identified here. The stories attached to place names are at the core of the book and the reason why it has stood the test of time. Some recall faraway places: Bombay, Shanghai, Moscow, Berlin. Others paint the locality as a little piece of heaven on earth: Bliss, Splendor, Sweet Home. In many cases the name derivations are unusual, sometimes wildly so: Cat Square, Huggins Hell, Tater Hill, Whynot.
Telling us much about our own history in these snapshot histories of particular locales, The North Carolina Gazetteer provides an engaging, authoritative, and fully updated reference to place names from all corners of the Tar Heel State.
William S. Powell is professor of history emeritus at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Michael Hill is research supervisor at the North Carolina Office of Archives and History.