This is not something I think a lot about.  Name origins are definitely off my radar but, recently, I became interested in my own name and it's origins.  It started with 23 And Me and evolved into a sort of ancestry thing but not Ancestry And Me.

My mom's side of the family is clear and can be traced easily.  My father's side, however, not so much.  Turns out my grandfather immigrated to America as Vernon Lindquist but changed his name to Johnson because there were too many Lindquists.  Apparently, Johnson wasn't that popular back then?

He died when my dad was 5 and my grandmother married a man named McKelly and the rest as they say is history.  That adventure got me wondering about Kalamazoo and Michigan.

I knew that Kalamazoo's name origin was originally a Native American name although its exact origin hasn't been pinpointed. Some say it means "the mirage of reflecting river," while others say it means bubbling or boiling water.

What I never knew until now is how Michigan got it's name and it too comes with 2 different interpretations.  One account maintains the Michigan name is based on a Native American Chippewa word, "meicigama," meaning "great water." Another version of the name claims the state gets its name from Lake Michigan and that Michigan is a French conversion of the Ojibwa word misshikama, which means "big lake," "large lake," or "large water."

It only stands to reason that geography and the importance of water during that time in history would have incredible significance.  And now we know.

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