January 17, 2010

Heart-Singing Stuff

Which would you prefer to cross: Patton Island Bridge or Singing River Bridge?

I guessed as much.

One of the results of having Google alert me to mentions of our company Islandbridge is that I get to untangle news about those other 'island bridges' around the world that get caught up in the net. Over the past year, I've had news from such exotic locations as Paradise Island Bridge, Kettle Island Bridge and the wonderfully-tagged Wallops Island Bridge.

This morning brought the timely news that the bridge to Patton Island in Alabama (which had been named by default Patton Island Bridge) is to be formally called Singing River Bridge, both after the Native American name for the Tennessee River which it crosses and in recognition of the local singing tradition.

Why timely?

These past couple of weeks, I've been asked a number of times for advice on naming a company, and I had suggested my own preference for place names in general and for earthy, descriptive ones in particular.

Apparently, Churchill thought this way too, saying something along the lines that 'short words are better, and the old words are the best of all'.

I think he meant Anglo-Saxon in his case but the old languages across the world throw up some great hefty words, even in translation. There's something very immediate and appealing about the Singing River Bridge and, as a fellow 'bridge-dweller, I heartily applaud the good sense of the people of the Singing River valley.

And recommend their approach to you too!

Over To You: What are your favourite place or business names?

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