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Thurman captures international attention — over an apostrophe

The official naming of Jimmy’s Peak, as shown in a vintage postcard, has not only sparked a mini-controversy in Thurman, but it has garnered the rural town some international exposure — over a deleted apostrophe.

The official naming of Jimmy’s Peak, as shown in a vintage postcard, has not only sparked a mini-controversy in Thurman, but it has garnered the rural town some international exposure — over a deleted apostrophe.

— Newman apparently discovered that Thurman was host to a source of literacy — the Adirondack Mountain Writers’ Retreat founded by local resident Perky Granger, and he quoted her defense of the apostrophe in his article, too.

The article also quotes Susan Jennings, a descendant of Thurman settler James Cameron — for whom “Jimmy’s Peak” has been named locally. More than two years ago, she lobbied to have the name officially established by the U.S. government.

Keep in mind, this naming issue surfaced in Thurman — where who’s heading up a town youth committee, or what hours the food pantry operates, can spark angry public debates laced with insults and accusations.

Jennings’ action, however benign it might appear, prompted Lillie Cameron, 82, to make a formal protest to the Domestic Names Committee of the U.S. Board on Geographic Names. Cameron contended that the wrong peak of the trio of hills referred to locally as “The Three Sisters” was being named Jimmys Peak, Newman reported.

The federal Committee on Names responded by voting to delete the name from its latest digital maps, Newman stated. The Committee is now considering Willard Mountain for the peak’s official name, he said.

Jennings said Sunday she wasn’t going to make a fight of it — she was merely seeking to have a local unnamed peak bear the locally-used name.

“I’m through with all this,” she said, noting she was frustrated at seeing her mountain naming effort thwarted, but she did have fun giving Newman a tour of Thurman while he was in town.

Newman said this week in a phone interview that he chose Thurman as the focus of his article because the Board on Geographic Names had cast an unusual split opinion, and it piqued his curiosity.

Sunday, Wood wasn’t focusing on the controversy — instead, she was pleased for the international exposure for her rural town, she said.

“The Journal article was light-hearted, and it introduced a lot of people to our town — people who otherwise might never hear of Thurman. “It was really cool.”

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