Its one of those questions everybody comes up with once. Its also one of those questions people think are inane, trivial, and irrelevant.
Why is Arkansas pronounced “Arkansaw?” And why isn’t Kansas pronounced “Kansaw?” According to Mark Stein’s book, “How the States Got Their Shapes,” The Native Americans living in the area were called Kansa. The s was added to make the word plural and thus the state name Kansas was created. Similarly, Arkansas was named after the Arkansa people as well as the Arkansa River. They made the word plural, but the damned French kept their pronunciation; ending up with the silent s.
If you enjoy reading about little facts that no one gives a shit about (albeit interesting ones), I recommend Stein’s book. I know I will be annoying and alienating lots more friends in the coming years thanks to him.
For those who are confused about “Arkansas” and “Kansas”
“The word “Arkansas” itself is a French pronunciation (“Arcansas”) of a Quapaw (a related “Kaw” tribe) word, akakaze, meaning “land of downriver people” or the Sioux word akakaze meaning “people of the south wind”.” Ar-kan-saw can be blamed on the french.
“Kansas is named for the Kansas River, which is named for the Kansa tribe. It’s the English spelling though, so naturally, we pronounce the final “s.”
“ And Kan-sas can be blamed on the english.
No kidding. This is a real park, and a real trip to take soon. Visitors flock to Crater of Diamonds State Park where more than 100,000 diamonds have been discovered.
The only public diamond mine in the world is in Murfreesboro, Arkansas. CNNMoney’s Vanessa Yurkevich went digging for one.
Source: Pay $8 to mine your own diamonds – Video – Luxury