15 October 2014

Named for a Place in Sweden But Spelled the German Way

Names get spelled incorrectly for a variety of reasons. Sometimes the reasons are known and sometimes they are not. And sometimes reasons are merely speculation. 

Such is the case with Gothenburg, Nebraska.

I'm not certain how accurate the story in this newspaper clipping is in describing the history of the naming of Gothenburg, Nebraska. Any newspaper reference in 1954 to an event in 1882 is decidedly second hand and it's reliability could easily be less than 100%.
Digital image from  Genealogybank
The town was named for a place in Sweden: Goteburg. But a German spelled the word and so it ended up being spelled as "Gothenburg." I'm certain there is a genealogical lesson in that spelling origin.

The only reason I located this entry on Genealogybank was because I was searching for William Ehmen. He was a Lutheran minister and a first cousin of my great-great-grandfather Focke Goldenstein who also settled in Gothenburg.