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New England Trivia: How Did New England Get Its Name?

A Reader Asks:

HELP!!! OK, it's not as bad as all that, but I'm having difficulty finding interesting, little-known facts/trivia about your wonderful New England. Reason I'm looking is for a project I'm working on, and I know there must be some wonderful WOW tid-bits that New Englanders don't know.... Have combed thru Yankee mags, and cruised the WWW, but have only found stuff specific to cities/states in New England. How, for instance, did New England become so named, or why did those states band together? Anyway... any help/directions to help you might be able to lend me would be most appreciated.

Thank you,
- Elizabeth C.

Answer from Kim Knox Beckius,
About.com New England Travel Expert:

Hi Elizabeth!

I found the answer to your question about how New England came to be called New England in Tom Brosnahan and Kim Grant's Lonely Planet guidebook for New England. Here goes:

"The English explorer Captain John Smith, while cruising the coast of North America in 1614, christened the land New England. The name came to be used when referring to the four early British colonies here: Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut and New Hampshire. In the 1700s the states of Maine and Vermont were included. Since that time, the six states have preserved their character as a unique region."

Looking for more New England trivia? The Encyclopedia of New England is a terrific reference book that I keep here in my office.

Yankee Magazine now makes it easy to find articles about New England trivia and lore.

Use the Search box above to find many more resources on my site for interesting facts about famous New England places and events like the Salem Witch Trials and the Pilgrims' First Thanksgiving.

And... here's a really fun piece of New England trivia: How to tell a male lobster from a female lobster.

Hope this information is useful!

All best wishes as you plan your trip,
Kim Knox Beckius
About.com New England Travel Expert

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