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Old 10-07-2018, 08:46 PM
 
Location: Cumberland
5,260 posts, read 8,466,155 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nicole111 View Post
While I'm asking questions (sorry to those of you who are getting sick of me), I looked up Jefferson County on the map of WV that hangs on my wall, and it is really Far East--probably as east as you can get--and I realized that I may never get there. I know this is a strange question, but is there any way to expand as to how JC seems Mid-Atlantic, just so that I have a more accurate picture of the state? Are there fewer mountains there?Are the accents more modified? Is it very much like Maryland? Is there any way it is not like Maryland? Is there a mall there? Just curious. Thanks.
Jefferson county is an exurb of Washington D.C. It is mostly rolling valley land, only a small portion ascends the westernmost slope of the Blue Ridge. Sub-developments are everywhere, as are new build schools, shopping centers etc. Many of the residents are transplants who work closer in to metro D.C. and commute in.

The native dialect of the region would still be Southern, but with the transplants, you may or may not here it.

BTW, lots of parts of the Eastern Panhandle/Potomac Highlands of WV are like their MD neighbors. Out here in Western Maryland, we are very similar in economy/history/dialect/politics with WV counties like Mineral, Hampshire, Morgan. Berekely and Jefferson Counties are similar to Washington County, MD. The two states share a border.


Overall, my favorite quote about WV identity(which I will now butcher) is

The Northern most Southern State
The Southern most Northern State
The most Eastern of the Midwestern States
The most Midwestern of the Eastern States

To me, I just call it Appalachia.

Last edited by westsideboy; 10-07-2018 at 09:28 PM..
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Old 10-08-2018, 07:34 AM
 
Location: WV and Eastport, ME
12,269 posts, read 11,617,914 times
Reputation: 7960
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nicole111 View Post
I know this is a difficult question to pose on the Internet, but is there any way you could describe how your Charlestonian accent differs from other southern accents? I am a huge regional accent enthusiast, but I find that there is almost nothing on YouTube from which I could learn, and you don't meet many southerners where I am.

Also, do you have any info on how the southern accent varies throughout the state? Like I've posted prior, I've been about as far north as you can go and still be in WV (Chester), and all I could notice was how thick the southern accent was, especially if you compare it to the accents of other southerners, like Dallas or Norfolk, VA, where I barely notice an accent, if at all. The only time I heard someone from West Virginia speak who didn't sound totally southern was someone from TV who lived in the eastern panhandle. So any info about the differing WV accents would be helpful, because my ear is not sophisticated enough to pick up the diffence on its own, and I can't find a good map or anything.
There are many subtle differences, some so nuanced that you'd have to hear them. Last week there was a clue about Charleston on Jeopardy. Alex Trebek pronounced the name of the river so close to the way Charlestonians pronounce it that you would have thought he grew up here. There is no way to write that down. "Kanawha" comes out as almost/kinda/sorta two syllables, but those of us who have heard that word all our lives know it was sort of "slang" shorted from three.

People here generally pronounce the word "about" sounding like "out" or "outdoors." People further south pronounce it sounding like "boat." There is also a distinct difference in how the word "ice" is pronounced in WV when compared to how it is pronounced in the deep south. Down in Georgia, the "i" in "ice" sounds like "eye," but I can't think of a way to write down how it is pronounced in WV.

Most people that work in broadcasting have been taught to speak "middle American" English. When they are on the air, they basically sound like they have no accent at all (other than the way they pronounce place names). I've observed this in other places as well.
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Old 10-08-2018, 11:58 AM
 
123 posts, read 236,461 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mensaguy View Post
There are many subtle differences, some so nuanced that you'd have to hear them. Last week there was a clue about Charleston on Jeopardy. Alex Trebek pronounced the name of the river so close to the way Charlestonians pronounce it that you would have thought he grew up here. There is no way to write that down. "Kanawha" comes out as almost/kinda/sorta two syllables, but those of us who have heard that word all our lives know it was sort of "slang" shorted from three.
Thank you for taking the time to write out that explanation. I saw that Jeopardy! episode, and it is a bit frustrating that a Canadian who has probably never been to WV is naturally pronouncing words over which I stumble correctly At least I got the question right. The contestant who rang in incorrectly guessed "South Carolina," probably upon hearing the word "Charleston."

When I watched the Jeopardy! episode, of course I felt smug that I got a question right, but I started wondering about something bigger: I don't know if this is fodder for a new thread, but how much exposure do West Virginians (and out of state residents who worship WV) want for the state? As an infrequent, but intense, visitor, I have to confess that I enjoy the ignorance in very minor, petty ways. As a very general statement, I don't want Yankees flooding the place and corrupting it the way they did with Florida. But I guess I would like to pose that question to others.

It's also dumbfounding to me that people don't know about West Virginia as a state. Whenever I told my colleagues (I am a lawyer!) or even my doctor that I was going on vacation to West Virginia, they would ask such dumb questions. A lot of them invoked the beach, like Virginia Beach, and Chesapeake Bay. Finally, I just started saying we were going to Kentucky, just to shut them up about the Commonwealth of Virginia, a place which holds little or no interest to me. Then, after we got back, I just told people who asked that my husband and I went to Charleston, since that was the last place we visited. Most people are too ignorant to know where either Charleston is, so they just left me alone (thank you, Jesus!) but one person was like, "Charleston, SC? I heard it's beautiful there." And I was just like, "No, it was Charleston, WV, which is also beautiful," and she looked at me like I was nuts and moved along. Part of me gets irritated at their ignorance, and the other part is just grateful I won't run into them next time I go to WV, which will probably be for Irish Bowling.

I guess I want to know how others feel about the rampant ignorance. I say, if it ain't broke, don't fix it!
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Old 10-09-2018, 05:20 AM
 
Location: Martinsburg, West Virginia
1,171 posts, read 1,916,746 times
Reputation: 509
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nicole111 View Post
Thank you for taking the time to write out that explanation. I saw that Jeopardy! episode, and it is a bit frustrating that a Canadian who has probably never been to WV is naturally pronouncing words over which I stumble correctly At least I got the question right. The contestant who rang in incorrectly guessed "South Carolina," probably upon hearing the word "Charleston."

When I watched the Jeopardy! episode, of course I felt smug that I got a question right, but I started wondering about something bigger: I don't know if this is fodder for a new thread, but how much exposure do West Virginians (and out of state residents who worship WV) want for the state? As an infrequent, but intense, visitor, I have to confess that I enjoy the ignorance in very minor, petty ways. As a very general statement, I don't want Yankees flooding the place and corrupting it the way they did with Florida. But I guess I would like to pose that question to others.

It's also dumbfounding to me that people don't know about West Virginia as a state. Whenever I told my colleagues (I am a lawyer!) or even my doctor that I was going on vacation to West Virginia, they would ask such dumb questions. A lot of them invoked the beach, like Virginia Beach, and Chesapeake Bay. Finally, I just started saying we were going to Kentucky, just to shut them up about the Commonwealth of Virginia, a place which holds little or no interest to me. Then, after we got back, I just told people who asked that my husband and I went to Charleston, since that was the last place we visited. Most people are too ignorant to know where either Charleston is, so they just left me alone (thank you, Jesus!) but one person was like, "Charleston, SC? I heard it's beautiful there." And I was just like, "No, it was Charleston, WV, which is also beautiful," and she looked at me like I was nuts and moved along. Part of me gets irritated at their ignorance, and the other part is just grateful I won't run into them next time I go to WV, which will probably be for Irish Bowling.

I guess I want to know how others feel about the rampant ignorance. I say, if it ain't broke, don't fix it!
I attended a Pennsylvania state school a few years ago. A large percentage of my friends from the Philly area did not know West Virginia was a state. Even when I explained it some would still stare in disbelief.

One in particular still thinks I'm from Virginia despite my numerous attempts to convince him otherwise.

Another referred to WV as though it is a "territory" or "district" maybe along the lines of DC or Puerto Rico.

Sad under any circumstance....but PA borders WV!!!
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Old 10-09-2018, 07:38 AM
 
Location: Palm Springs CA
466 posts, read 490,324 times
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When I was touring that part of the country with my band we used to determine if we were in the south by whether or not the breakfast places served grits. We used to call it the "grits line" and it seemed like a pretty accurate indicator.
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Old 10-22-2018, 11:55 PM
 
271 posts, read 105,107 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by spunkydawg View Post
I dunno, I'm out in Jefferson County (furthest east), and we don't seem very southern at all. More like one of the Mid-Atlantics I guess.
Wholeheartedly agree about Jefferson/Berkeley county. It feels much more East coast than southern.
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