Florida Guide > Miscellaneous
The State Nicknames – Part 9
Next time you are in Orlando take a look at the number plates on the cars as you drive by. They include the state’s nickname, and each one is different.
Named after the Minnesota River, Minnesota is nicknamed the North Star State, and this has its origins in the state motto, ‘L’Etoile du Nord’ or ‘Star of the North.
Water plays a large part in the state of Minnesota, as there are said to be 11. 824 lakes that are 10 acres or more. Thus, the nickname ‘Land of 10, 000 Lakes’ is very pertinent. The mighty Mississippi River, as well as the St Lawrence and the Red River of the North all begin their journeys in Minnesota.
An interesting nickname, ' The Bread and Butter State, ' reflects the superior quality of the wheat, flour and dairy products produced by Minnesota. The name, ' The Wheat State’ of course pays homage to its wheat crops.
An argument about the next name, ' The Gopher State, ' developed in the middle of the 19th century, when opponents of the name said the gopher was a useless creature with a destructive nature. The name ' The Beaver State' was criticised as it was argues that the beaver was not plentiful enough to represent the whole state, thus these two names fell into disuse.
Named after the Mississippi River, this state has a rather beautiful nickname, ‘Magnolia State, ’which evokes scenes of stately white mansions, warm breezes and the scent of magnolia blossom in the air. The magnolia is the official state tree, and the blossom is the official state flower. The word ‘Mississippi’ means large river and is a Chippewa Indian word.
Cotton plantations thrived here and cotton was once its main crop, until the arrival of the devastating boll weevil in 1907. Although cotton remains an important part of the agriculture of Mississippi, it now produces more diverse crops such as soya bean. However, manufacturing has replaced agriculture, making Mississippi the leading producer of upholstered furniture.
Mississippi is also sometimes referred to as the ‘Bayou State, ’ named after the many slow moving streams that wind their way through the lowlands along the Mississippi River. It is also known sometimes as the ' Eagle State, ' after the Bald Eagle which appears on its Coat of Arms. '
However, a more amusing nickname is ‘The Mud-cat State, ’ and this refers to the large cat fish which live in the swamps and rivers of Mississippi. Catfish production is now the leading aquaculture industry and much of it comes from Mississippi, and it started in the 1960’s when cotton, soyabeans and rice were becoming less profitable to grow. The Mississippi Delta, with its abundant supply of fresh water was the perfect place for this industry to grow.
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