A plaque remaining from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem.

Above, a 1934 plaque from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem. Discarded as trash in 2006.

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Entry from January 31, 2016
Connecticut: Nutmeg State (nickname)

Entry in progress—B.P.

Connecticut State Library
The “Nutmeg State”
According to the book State Names, Flags, Seals, Songs, Birds, Flowers, and Other Symbols by George Earlie Shankle (New York: H.W. Wilson Company, 1941):

“The sobriquet, the Nutmeg State, is applied to Connecticut because its early inhabitants had the reputation of being so ingenious and shrewd that they were able to make and sell wooden nutmegs. Sam Slick (Judge Halliburton) seems to be the originator of this story. Some claim that wooden nutmegs were actually sold, but they do not give either the time or the place.”

Yankee peddlers from Connecticut sold nutmegs, and an alternative story is that:

“Unknowing buyers may have failed to grate nutmegs, thinking they had to be cracked like a walnut. Nutmegs are wood, and bounce when struck. If southern customers did not grate them, they may very well have accused the Yankees of selling useless “wooden” nutmegs, unaware that they wear down to a pungent powder to season pies and breads.” Elizabeth Abbe, Librarian, the Connecticut Historical Society; Connecticut Magazine, April 1980.
(...)
Nicknames for Connecticut Residents
(...)
“Nutmegger” is sometimes used. It is derived from the nickname, the Nutmeg State, based on the practice of the Connecticut peddlers who traveled about selling nutmegs.

(Oxford English Dictionary)
Nutmeg State n. U.S. the State of Connecticut (to some of whose inhabitants was formerly imputed the practice of passing off nutmeg-shaped pieces of wood as the spice).
1834 N. Amer. Rev. Jan. 109 The shrewd native of the nutmeg State, who..now ploughs the broad ocean, instead of vending his clocks and clothes-pins from Dan to Beersheba on shore.
1857 Harper’s Mag. Dec. 136/2 Let us repeat a story that comes fresh from the Nutmeg State.
1948 Field & Stream June 128/2 Nutmeg State sportsmen immediately set out on an anti-pollution program that may get results.

OCLC WorldCat record
THE NEW CONNECTICUT NUTMEGS.—A good anecdote is told of
Publisher: VINCENNES, INDIANA
Edition/Format: Article Article
Publication: OLD POST UNION, (May 17, 1862)
Database: The Civil War: 1855-1869

OCLC WorldCat record
“Wooden nutmegs” at Bull Run : a humorous account of some of the exploits and experiences of the three months Connecticut brigade, and the part they bore in the national stampede
Author: Elnathan B Tyler
Publisher: Hartford : G.L. Coburn, 1872.
Edition/Format: eBook : Document : English

OCLC WorldCat reocrd
Connecticut the Nutmeg state.
Author: Chase Manhattan Bank.
Publisher: New York, N.Y., Pub. by Bank of the Manhattan Co. [©1935]
Series: The Manhattan library., v. 2-S
Edition/Format: Print book : English

OCLC WorldCat record
The Connecticut nutmegger. Volume no. 1 & 2, 1968-1969
Author: Connecticut Society of Genealogists.
Publisher: [Glastonbury, Conn.] : Connecticut Society of Genealogists, 1968-1969.
Edition/Format: Print book : English

OCLC WorldCat record
Some Connecticut nutmeggers who migrated
Author: Grace Louise Knox
Publisher: Bowie, Md. : Heritage Books, 1988.
Edition/Format: Print book : English

OCLC WorldCat record
For the Nutmeggers
Author: Judy G Russell
Edition/Format: Downloadable article Downloadable article : English
Publication: The Legal Genealogist, (2015-04-15T13:00:46.000Z)
Database: ACI Scholarly Blog Index

Posted by Barry Popik
Other ExpressionsOther States • Sunday, January 31, 2016 • Permalink