1500 California Place Names

 1500 California Place Names

Their Origin and Meaning, A Revised version of 1000 California

Place Names by Erwin G. Gudde, Third editionWilliam Bright

This is the new “pocket” version of the classic California Place Names, first published by

California in 1949. Erwin G. Gudde’s monumental work, which went through several

editions during its author’s lifetime, has now been released in an expanded and updated

edition by William Bright. The abridged version, originally called 1000 California Place

Names, has grown to a dynamic 1500 California Place Names in Bright’s hands. Those who

have used and enjoyed 1000 California Place Names through the decades will be glad to

know that 1500 California Place Names is not only bigger but better. This handbook

focuses on two sorts of names: those that are well-known as destinations or geographical

features of the state, such as La Jolla, Tahoe, and Alcatraz, and those that demand

attention because of their problematic origins, whether Spanish like Bodega and Chamisal

or Native American like Aguanga and Siskiyou.

Names of the major Indian tribes of California are included, since some of them have been

directly adapted as place names and others have been the source of a variety of names.

Bright incorporates his own recent research and that of other linguists and local historians,

giving us a much deeper appreciation of the tangled ancestry many California names

embody. Featuring phonetic pronunciations for all the Golden State’s tongue-twisting

names, this is in effect a brand new book, indispensable to California residents and visitors


Field Guide – the California Naturalist’s Handbook

The California Naturalist Handbook provides a fun, science-based introduction to California’s natural history with an emphasis on observation, discovery, communication, stewardship and conservation. It is a hands-on guide to learning about the natural environment of California. Subjects covered include California natural history and geology, native plants and animals, California’s freshwater resources and ecosystems, forest and rangeland resources, conservation biology, and the effects of global warming on California’s natural communities. The Handbook also discusses how to create and use a field notebook, natural resource interpretation, citizen science, and collaborative conservation and serves as the primary text for the California Naturalist Program.