The Official Website of the State of West Virginia

West Virginia place names you might be saying wrong


Philippi, Canaan Valley and even Appalachia might not seem that difficult to pronounce for most West Virginians, but for an outsider, these words can be very confusing.
Not pronouncing letters or even full syllables is common in West Virginia place names. In order to get the most accurate pronunciations, 12 News consulted West Virginia University guide from 1981 titled “A Guide to Pronunciation of Place Names in West Virginia” for reference.
After consulting the guide, here is a list of hard to pronounce West Virginia places that could slip up anyone not from here and even some West Virginia natives.
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