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Unusual Nomenclature in Four US Regions

The English language is known for some interesting twists and turns, a tradition that continues with the naming of US towns. The reasoning behind some of the more unusual names is often as obscure as English word origins, but it does make travel through the US interesting.

1. If you're traveling below the Mason Dixon line, take note of town names like Jot 'Em Down or Climax, Georgia. There's no affiliation between Climax and Intercourse in Sumter County, a historic area producing wheat, peanuts, and cotton. It sports a decent population of around thirty thousand, in direct contrast with...

2. Nothing, Arizona. The American West is known for its big, empty spaces, but it's the little things that count - or don't, depending on how you reason. Nothing, Arizona is a literal wide spot in the road twenty miles south of the "Rattlesnake Capital of Arizona." It's been abandoned because its tiny industries have come to, you guessed it, nothing. No surprise there. However, Surprise, Arizona sports a population of over 100,000 and is in close proximity to Luke Air Force Base. Clearly, there's nothing small or inconspicuous about Surprise, yet travelers find its name a little - surprising.

3. If you're traveling in the Midwest, check out Devil's Elbow, Missouri, named after a tricky bend in the Big Piney River. It rests on historic Route 66, but visitors may be disappointed if they're interested in visiting the site of the not-so-famous Devil's Elbow Cafe. The area is currently being rebuilt after flooding in 2017.

4. New England is a beautiful locale that is clearly hiding some real gems, like Satan's Kingdom, an unincorporated area in Northfield, Massachusetts. How the area came to be called Satan's Kingdom isn't clear, but at least one YouTuber believes the name developed out of nicknaming to warn people of poisonous snakes and other dangers in the wooded area. Got it - be wary of Satan's Kingdom.

Road tripping around the US offers valuable experiences. Don't forget opportunities for selfies with some odd and entertaining road signs!