Your Grandmother's Cherokee

Preserving the Cherokee language, one word at a time.

French Broad River and mountains near Asheville

Correct Name for Asheville--from Wiggins Black Fox, Inoli

Correct way to say Asheville, NC

For many years now I have heard the word for the Town of Asheville, NC pronounced To-gi-ya-s-di . That isn’t even a complete word for the place it is supposed to represent. The word is suppose to be U-na-l(a)-to-gi-ya-s-di, which means a place used for racing. In this scenario before there was a town of Asheville, the Cherokees used to race dugout canoes down the French Broad River somewhere near the present town. So instead of using the whole correct word U-na-l(a)-to-gi-ya-s-di , it was shortened to To-gi-ya-s-di. Its understood as Asheville, but it’s a form of and not a complete Cherokee word. I have stated before, in order for the Cherokee Language to survive the words should be said complete and not shortened.

The correct way to say Asheville,N.C. is Ko-s-du-yi ,Ga-ya-le-ni. [literally, Ashes place, Carolina.] I heard one Elder man say this word last week (5-3-2014), was surprised because no one says it. Thanks Tony B.

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