The Myth about Nappanee

My hometown is named "Nappanee". In Nappanee it is well-known that it is the only city in the US with each letter in the name repeated twice. Except, it isn't true. This myth is often repeated in and around the city and perennially makes its way onto Wikipedia with some garbage citation to a less-than-credible page like this one. This is despite me giving proof of its falsehood directly in the article by stating that Hannah, ND also has this property.

Also, in that fix to the page I noted that Nappanee in the longest city name with this property in the US, though I didn't give evidence.

I had long expected the myth to be false and thus I gathered the US census data and analyzed it with a simple Python script. Since the Wikipedia entry seems doomed to repeat the myth unless some web page is cited I have created this page and have posted along with it (in addition to the above counterexample) the script and the data needed to prove this for yourself.

I fully expect someone will change the Wikipedia entry back, ignoring its obvious falsity. Oh, well. I wonder if the people of Hannah have this myth as well.

Download Source Code and Data

City Names in the US with Each Letter Repeated Twice

Notice, however, that Nappanee is the longest city name in the US with each letter repeated twice (assuming the correctness of my code and that the census data is complete).

Additionally, as far as I could find in the data there is no city name with each letter being repeated more than twice.


Ryan Stutsman - Wed Jun 16 22:54:34 PDT 2010