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BGN Geekery: Trivia roundup
Monday, April 21, 2008   10:56 PM

According to the U.S. Board on Geographic Names FAQ, at last count Fairview was the most common community name in the U.S., with 288 occurrences. Midway, formerly the frontrunner, came in at 256.

Contrary to popular belief, only 34 states have a community named Springfield; however, Riverside appears in 46 different states, with "only Alaska, Hawaii, Louisiana, and Oklahoma not having a community so named."

The 3,141 counties and county equivalents in the 50 States (and D.C.) are categorized as follows:

3,007 entities named "County"
16 Boroughs in Alaska
11 Census Areas in Alaska (for areas not organized into Boroughs by the State)
64 Parishes in Louisiana
42 Independent Cities (1 in Maryland, 1 in Missouri, 1 in Nevada, and the remainder in Virginia)
1 District - the Federal District or District of Columbia.

("What are the only two U.S. states without counties?" would be a good trivia question. Likewise, "What are the four states officially known as commonwealths?")

If you count hyphens, then Winchester-on-the-Severn, in Maryland, has the longest official community name in the U.S. Another Maryland community takes second place: Linstead-on-the-Severn, with 22 characters.

For communities without hyphens, it's a tie between the 17-letter Mooselookmeguntic, in Maine, and Kleinfeltersville, in Pennsylvania. Elsewhere in the U.S., Chickasawhatchee, Chancellorsville, and Eichelbergertown are all one letter short of the record.

The longest name, period, in their database is University of Rhode Island Coastal Institute on Narragansett Bay Conference and Visitor Center, at 94 characters. But they count spaces.

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