Oregonians Are Probably Wrong, It Should Be Said ‘Ore-GONE’
Millions of Oregonians have a shared pet peeve: people from outside Oregon calling it "Ore-gone" instead of "Orygun." Here are 5 reasons they're probably all wrong.
People feel so strongly about it you can even buy stickers at the University of Oregon that say, "ORYGUN" so wherever you go after graduation you can do your part to "correct" the "mispronunciation." Hmm... we'll see, read below.
No one knows the origin of the word "Oregon." Entire books have been written on the subject. But one thing is clear, people who were not in Oregon, who maybe never lived in Oregon, labeled it Oregon in reports and maps 200 years ago. And where these people were from it was pronounced "Ore-gone." One popular theory is it was bastardized Portuguese, or French, or Algonquin. In all three languages the "roots" of the word were pronounced "gone."
Are you ready to swallow the red pill? The second answer in Yahoo Answers regarding the pronunciation of Oregon is a man who remembers being taught -- in Oregon -- in school -- to say it Ore-gone.
I was especially excited when I found this because I remember reading on Wikipedia years ago that Oregon state itself encouraged people to call it "Ore-gone" and then a political shift occurred and the new leaders reversed it and have been on a warpath ever since. But this is no longer included in the "Oregon" Wikipedia article and one can never trust their own memory.
Upon, baton, pylon, etc.
I'm sure your mind dashes to the exception... the gold of the Northwest... SALMON! Unfortunately (for you) it's from the Latin Salmo and the old French word Salmun. The English changed the spelling some time back, but not the pronunciation.
There's a famous neighborhood, more like a district, in historic Dayton, Ohio, named Oregon and pronounced "Ore-gone." Ohio, that land of trappers, explorers and Indian wars steeped in U.S. legend, pronounces the district the way the name has always been pronounced (until lately).
They may APPEAR to be in unison today about the third syllable, but be aware Oregonians are a feisty bunch and they're still arguing over the second syllable: