So, one of the favorite things I like to do is research, look things up, find the meaning behind names, words...etc. Researching has also been a big part of my job (maybe that is why I do what I do). And I love a good challenge. There is nothing that I can not find, if it takes me hours, days, weeks...I will do my best to find it.
Yesterday was a fun example. We were having a debate in our newsroom on why Lakeland, Florida was called Lakeland. I threw out that I believed that it was named Lakeland because it has a TON of lakes, someone here disagreed with me - too easy.
So, I took the challenge. I had to find out why Lakeland is called Lakeland. A quick search on the Internet turned up a few history facts. Did you know that they were thinking about naming Lakeland - Munnville (after the man that founded the town), Red Bug (I want to know where that name came from!), or Rome City. But I could not find why they ended up choosing Lakeland. I found the number to the Lakeland Public Library and called the reference desk. I asked my question. Vic, the great guy at the desk told me to hold on, he was going to ask the library historian. After, less than a minute, Vic came back and said that the founder of the town, Abraham Munn, did not want the town named after him and they finally came to agreement to call the town Lakeland, due to ALL THE LAKES!
Lakeland - Lots of Lakes!
I have been to Polk County maybe twice since I have lived in the Tampa Bay area, but loved just reading the history on how towns formed along the railroad tracks.
I found a great site on Polk County History, if you have a few minutes take a look. http://www.polkcountyhistory.org/
Today - I wonder what I will find!