COBWEB CORNERS: Spanish names not easy for some
By Mel McFarland
If you are new to the area you might wonder about how we pronounce some of the names in the area. The Spanish language has been abused to an amazing extent here in Colo-rado. I have heard this tale many times over the years, but when I ran across this version I had to chuckle a bit.
This story came from an 1873 Colorado Springs newspaper. "If you wish to know where Peabeilow, or Peablow, or Publow, or Peblow, or Pebbe, or Puebbe is, it is about 45 miles south of Colorado Springs. At any rate, there is a place down there to which our postmaster sends all the letters which come through with these various addresses. The people want to know whether there is such a place as Pueblo. All we can say in reply is that if they wish to spell the name in that way, perhaps the others just spell it the way people pronounce it." If you listen, I am sure you still hear all these versions and a lot more. There are others too!
Canon City, Buena Vista, Alamosa, Antonito, Costilla and many of our street names are often pronounced in some strange ways. Tourists are often confounded by such names as Uintah, Saguache, Cuchara, Fruita and La Junta. These are: You-in-ta, Saawatch, Coo-char-a, Fruit-a and La Hunta. One of my favorites is Uintah. I have heard all sorts of variations, from people who are new to the area, like unit-tah and ooo-nat-ah.
My grandfather grew up in the area in the 1890's and had his own story. "I only know how to pronounce two streets in town, Tea-john and Cass-ka-dee; other than that I don't know."
I hope you figure out those two.