Virginia.—The oldest of the states, was so called in honor of Queen Elizabeth, the "Virgin Queen," in whose reign Sir Walter Raleigh made his first attempt to colonize that region.

Florida.—Ponce de Leon landed on the coast of Florida on Easter Sunday, and called the country in commemoraticn of the day, which was the Pasqua Florida of the Spaniards, or " Feast of Flowers."

Louisiana was called after Louis the Fourteenth, who at one time owned that section of the country.

Alabama was so named by the Indians, and signifies " Here we Rest."

Mississippi is likewise an Indian name, meaning " Long River."

Arkansas, from Kansas, the Indian word for "smoky water." Its prefix was really arc, the French word for "bow."

The Carolinas were originally one tract, and were called " Carolana," after Charles the Ninth of France.

Georgia owes its name to George the Second of England, who first established a colony there in 1732.

Tennessee is the Indian name for the " River of the Bend," i. e., the Mississippi which forms its western boundary.

Kentucky is the Indian name for "at the head of the river."

Ohio means "beautiful;" Iowa, "drowsy ones;" Minnesota, "cloudy water," and Wisconsin, " wild-rushing channel."

Illinois is derived from the Indian word Illini, men, and the French suffix ois, together signifying " tribe of men."

Michigan was called by the name giv en the lake, fish-weir, which was so styled from its fancied resemblance to a fish trap.

Missouri is from the Indian word " muddy," which more properly applies to the river that flows through it.

Oregon owes its Indian name also to its principal river.

Cortez named California.

Massachusetts is the Indian for " the country around the great hills." Connecticut, from the Indian Quon-ch-ta-Cut, signifying " Long River." Maryland, after Henrietta Maria, Queen of Charles the First, of England.

New York was named by the Duke of York.

Pennsylvania means "Penn's woods," and was so called after William Penn, its original owner. Delaware after Lord De la Ware.

New Jersey, so called in honor of Sir George Carteret, who was governor of the island of Jersey, in the British channel.

Maine was called after the province of Maine, in France, in compliment of Queen Henrietta of England, who owned that province.


Vermont, from the French words vert tnont, signifying green mountain. New Hampshire, from Hampshire county, in England. It was formerly called Laconia.

The little state of Rhode Island owes its name to the island of Rhodes, in the Mediterranean, which domain it is said to greatly resemble.

Texas is the American word for the Mexican name by which all that section of the country was called before it was ceded to the United States.


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History of Ray County, Missouri.


Boundary, Geographical Position, and Physical Features.—Ray county, Missouri, is situated in the northwestern part of the state, and is bounded as follows:

North by Caldwell county; east by Carroll county; south by the Missouri river, separating it from Lafayette and Jackson counties, and west by Clay and Clinton counties.

Richmond, the county seat of Ray county, is in longitude seventeen degrees west from Washington, ninety-four degrees west from Greenwich, and the northern part of the county is crossed by parallel thirty-nine degrees, thirty minutes of north latitude. It embraces all that portion of Missouri lying between the range line separating ranges twenty-five and twenty-six, and the range line separating ranges twenty-nine and thirty, west of the fifth principal meridian, and extending from the township line between townships fifty-four and fifty-five, north, southward to the middle of the main channel of the Missouri river.

The townships bordering on the Missouri river are numbered fifty and fifty-one, and are fractional.

The above limits, greatly less than the original, are the result of repeated formations of new counties from the territory allotted to Ray by the act establishing it as a county, and include a superficial area of 561.64 square miles, or 359,449.6 acres.

The twelve congressional townships north of the line between townships fifty-one and fifty-two are integral, and therefore, aggregate four hundred and thirty-two square miles; those south of that line extending to the Missouri river, are fractional, as above stated, and contain, in all, 129.64 square miles.

Ray county is twenty-four miles in width. The Missouri river, as it passes the southern border of the county, is quite sinuous, thereby making the distance from its northern to its southern line irregular. The greatest length of the county, north and south, is twenty-six and one-half miles from the point where the section line between sections seventeen and eighteen, township fifty, of range twenty-eight, touches the issouri river—due northward.

The longest straight line that may be drawn within the limits of Ray county, would extend from the northwest corner of section six, township fifty-four, range twenty-nine, to the southeast corner of fractional section twenty-four, township fifty-one, range twenty-six.

Ray county is most happily situated in the heart of the most beautiful and productive agricultural and mineral region of northwest Missouri. Kansas City is distant but forty-four miles from its county seat; St. Joseph sixty-seven miles, and St. Louis, the metropolis of the Mississippi valley, is only two hundred and thirty-seven miles to the southeastward.

Natural and artificial lines of transportation are ample and convenient, and the great western and southern markets are easily and cheaply accessible at all seasons of the year. The citizens of Ray have reason, therefore, to rejoice at the fortunate position of their county; and her inexhaustible natural resources, coupled with the thrift, industry and enterprise of her people, justify the hope that she will ever retain the rank she now deservedly holds, as one of the very first counties of Missouri.

The southern border of the county is laved by the waters of the great Missouri—reckoning from its source 'o the gulf, as is proper, the longest river in the world—and while one might reasonably suppose that the low lands bordering on so turbid and sluggish a stream are marshy, subject to frequent inundation, and therefore well-nigh valueless, such is—in Ray county at least—far from the case. These bottoms are highly cultivable, and the soil is deep, fertile and enduring.

Stretching across the southern past of the county—save at one or two places where bluffs intervene—at ar .average width of ahout five miles, and at from fifteen to thirty feet above the average watermark, they have good, natural drainage, and are, at almost all times, most admirably adapted to the purposes of husbandry.

These low lands Were overflowed in June, 1827; again in June, 1844, and again in April, of the present year, 1881; but they are now -May— being prepared for the ensuing crop. It will be observed that the intervals between overflows are so exceedingly long as to scarcely interfere with the cultivation of the bottoms; and their generous soil seldom fails to yield the industrious husbandman a bountiful harvest.

In the rear, and on the east and west sides of Camden, an old riparian hamlet, in sections twenty-six and twenty-seven, township fifty-one, range twenty-eight, the "bluffs" rise to a considerable hight, and present a scene picturesque and beautiful —especially in the spring-time, when the trees that crown their summits, are freighted with exuberant foliage.

The face of the county is beautifully, as well as conveniently diversified with prairie land, woodland, groves, valleys and arable hills or knolls. The last mentioned, however, in many places are covered with timber. The irregular surface configuration is an advantage to husbandry, making

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