After 99 years, Smartsville gets second 's' back

Sunday, August 24, 2008

SMARTSVILLE, Calif. -- Smartsville just reclaimed something taken from it nearly a century ago: its second "s."

The unincorporated town about 60 miles north of Sacramento has been described variously as Smartville and Smartsville since the U.S. Postal Service declared the second "s" to be grammatically incorrect in 1909.

Residents of the town of 1,600 have been fighting the charge ever since. Last week, the U.S. Board on Geographic Names agreed, ruling that the community can resume using its original name.

Resident Kit Burton, who organized the effort, said the decision caps an epic struggle for Smartsville's "identity, reputation and dignity."

The town is named for James Smart, who built the town's first building in 1856.

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