End of ADS-L Digest - 29 Apr 1998 to 30 Apr 1998
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ADS-L Digest - 28 Apr 1998 to 29 Apr 1998 98-04-30 00:00:28
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There are 10 messages totalling 678 lines in this issue.
Topics of the day:
1. St Louis Blues
2. Hello (1848!?) (2)
5. More thole
6. Reply-to issue, tech notes
7. arizona english only struck down (again?)
8. excerpts from az court decision
Date: Wed, 29 Apr 1998 01:28:06 -0500
From: "Donald M. Lance"
Subject: Re: St Louis Blues
>Thinking of Walt Wolfram giving the Tamony lecture in Columbia, Missouri,
>today; and feeling sorry that I couldn't make it to that annual celebration of
>American English, got me thinking about Missouri and its language.
>St Louis has the peculiarity of being a Northern speech island in a sea of
>Midland. But has this always been so? Was it the case when Lewis and Clark set
>off on their expedition? Has anybody studied St Louis speech of the 19th
>Don Lance, do you know?
>- Allan Metcalf
I didn't respond to AAllan's query immediately because I wanted to do a
little research. Upon consulting a history of Missouri, I find these facts
In 1800, St. Louis was "still a French village of about 1000 inhabitants
and 180 houses."
In 1799 there were only 300 residents in the St. Charles district
surrounding St. Louis.
In 1795, the officials in St. Louis suddenly changed earlier policy and
began permitting Americans to settle west of the Mississippi. The
Louisiana Territory [Upper and Lower] belonged to Spain from 1862 until
1800, and Spain began to worry about the British encroaching on Upper
Some American had come into the Territory between 1862 and 1895 but had to
be Catholic to do so.
Where would these settlers have come from? By the year 1795 "at least
50,000 pioneers had crossed the mountains to claim land in Ohio, Kentucky,
and Tennessee along the Ohio River and its tributaries."
In 1802, "approximately 550 river craft carried goods from the American
West down to New Orleans," where it could be sent on cargo ships to
Atlantic seaports. In 1795, Spain had to lift its embargo against American
navigation on the Mississippi.
Estimates of population in the Missouri Territory:
1804 10,000 (equally divided between French and Americans)
The early settlers were mostly farmers and other pioneer sorts who had
migrated southwestward from Pennsylvania into Virginia and North Carolina
and then westward into Tennessee, Kentucky, and the Ohio Valley. So, the
answer to Allan's first question is that St Louis would have been a
proto-South-Midland speech island at the time of the Lewis & Clark
As soon as St. Louis had developed enough shipping business to make it
worthwhile, industrialists from the East (Chicago was still developing) set
up operations there, and after railroads were build factories became viable
business opportunities for those who had the capital to start them.
I don't know whether anyone has studied 19th-century St. Louis speech, but
the most most complete study of Missouri as a whole is the article by Lance
& Faries in the LAVIS II volume.