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'Negro Head Creek' still being used despite name change

May 6, 2013 at 4:46 PM

MONROE, N.C., May 6 (UPI) -- A woman who fought to change the name of North Carolina's Negro Head Creek in the 1980s said she was disappointed to find the old name still being used.

Bea Colson led the fight to rename the creek -- which was named in the 1700s and commonly became known in the 1900s by an even more derogatory term also starting with "n" -- to Salem Head Creek and the change was made official by Union County commissioners in 1985.

However, Colson said she was disappointed to find the old names still appear in federal, state and local documents and databases, The Charlotte (N.C.) Observer reported Monday.

"I'm disappointed no one said, 'Is this true? Am I seeing what I think I'm seeing?'" Colson said.

Tyrel Moore, a University of North Carolina-Charlotte geographer and chairman of the North Carolina Board on Geographic Names, said he is also frustrated.

"The wrong word makes a tremendous difference," he said. "Why is this so hard to fix? We know how [the system] is supposed to work, but it didn't."

Officials said a bill being circulated in the state Legislature is designed to resolve the name confusion.

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