by Jody Stewart
Charlotte Blasingame received Resolution No. 2019-11-18-02 on November 18th that would correct and unify the spelling of the name of the city of LaFayette.
Blasingame said it has been bothering her since she moved to LaFayette several years ago that there was no unified spelling of the town’s name. “I noticed that on I-85 exit 77 it was spelled Lafayette, but then some signs in town spelled it LaFayette. Still others spelled it La Fayette.” Blasingame said, “It is no wonder no one can decide how to pronounce our name. There are at least three differnet spellings on state signs and maps out there.” Earlier in the year an SEC sports anchor said Boobie Whitlow was from the town of “LaFeet.”
Our town was first called “Chambersville”, but by the time of incorporation on January 7, 1835, the town name had been changed to “Lafayette”, named after the Marquis de Lafayette. It was January 16, 1844 the Senate and House of Representatives of the State of Alabama enacted Act No. 189 incorporating the Town of La Fayette. Its spelling was changed to “LaFayette” due to the influence of newspaper editor Johnson J. Hooper, who created a fictional character called Captain Simon Suggs, a backwoods southerner who pronounced the town’s name as “La Fait”.
Blasingame said once she became a City Councilwoman she thought it was time to do something about the issue with the unity of the spelling of the town’s name. She reached out to Bob Fincher our State Representative who directed her to John Trimble with the Department of Transportation. Hopefully all DOT and State Documents will be corrected within the near future.
The Resolution in part reads:
WHEREAS, on January 16, 1844 the Senate and House of Representatives of the State of
Alabama enacted Act No. 189 incorporating the Town of La Fayette; and,
WHEREAS, said Town of La Fayette has been for many years commonly spelled its
name as the Town of LaFayette; and,
WHEREAS, many of the records of the Department of Transportation and other State of
Alabama agencies have the name of the Town of LaFayette listed as the Town of Lafayette;
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED by the City Council of LaFayette, Alabama, as
1) That the correct spelling of the Town of La Fayette is either La Fayette or
LaFayette and it is incorrect to spell the name as the Town of Lafayette.
2) That the mayor and/or the city clerk are hereby authorized on the behalf of the
Town of LaFayette to request that any subdivision, department or agency of the
State of Alabama correct the spelling of the name of the Town of LaFayette on
any and all documentation of said subdivision, department or agency and that any
publication of said name, including informational or directional signs displayed in
the roadways and highways of the State of Alabama, from this date forward
reflect “LaFayette” as the proper name for the Town of La Fayette.