Borah Peak Name Contreversy

Borah Peak Name Contreversy

Dan R.
Dan R.

January 6th, 2003, 3:16 am #1

First off, I maintain a web site on hiking and peakbagging in Idaho. Lately, I have received a lot of feedback through that site reasoning that Borah Peak should actually be called Beauty Peak.

The reasons:
[*]The person that first ascended the peak (T.M. Bannon) named the peak Beauty.

[*]The benchmark atop the peak is named Beauty.

[*]USGS topos refer to the highpoint as Beauty (and Borah Peak). Check here.

[*]Arguably, Beauty is a better name for the peak.

[*]It was named after William E. Borah while he was still alive, which is against USGS naming policy.

I find these arguments interesting and they actually seem prudent. Not a lot different between this and a few arguments in other states... except it wasn't named after a politician from outside the state (though some in rural Idaho would argue that Boise is its' own state).

Any thoughts?
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Dan R.
Dan R.

January 6th, 2003, 3:18 am #2

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Jeffrey Cook
Jeffrey Cook

January 6th, 2003, 1:17 pm #3

First off, I maintain a web site on hiking and peakbagging in Idaho. Lately, I have received a lot of feedback through that site reasoning that Borah Peak should actually be called Beauty Peak.

The reasons:
[*]The person that first ascended the peak (T.M. Bannon) named the peak Beauty.

[*]The benchmark atop the peak is named Beauty.

[*]USGS topos refer to the highpoint as Beauty (and Borah Peak). Check here.

[*]Arguably, Beauty is a better name for the peak.

[*]It was named after William E. Borah while he was still alive, which is against USGS naming policy.

I find these arguments interesting and they actually seem prudent. Not a lot different between this and a few arguments in other states... except it wasn't named after a politician from outside the state (though some in rural Idaho would argue that Boise is its' own state).

Any thoughts?
I'm an outsider Idaho-wise, but to me it hardly seems worth all the trouble it would cause to rename a major peak unless there were some compelling reason to do so. As far as I have heard, there is no real controversy surrounding the current name, and no strong argument why Beauty Peak would be more appropriate. Mr. Borah is long since dead, after all, and everyone and every published reference knows the peak as Borah.

Incidently, there's a similar argument for reverting Mt. Whitney back to Fishermen's Peak. Josiah Whitney was still alive when the Brewer expedition named it after their boss.
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John M
John M

January 6th, 2003, 5:44 pm #4

First off, I maintain a web site on hiking and peakbagging in Idaho. Lately, I have received a lot of feedback through that site reasoning that Borah Peak should actually be called Beauty Peak.

The reasons:
[*]The person that first ascended the peak (T.M. Bannon) named the peak Beauty.

[*]The benchmark atop the peak is named Beauty.

[*]USGS topos refer to the highpoint as Beauty (and Borah Peak). Check here.

[*]Arguably, Beauty is a better name for the peak.

[*]It was named after William E. Borah while he was still alive, which is against USGS naming policy.

I find these arguments interesting and they actually seem prudent. Not a lot different between this and a few arguments in other states... except it wasn't named after a politician from outside the state (though some in rural Idaho would argue that Boise is its' own state).

Any thoughts?
I dislike naming peaks after people.

People should be commemorated by manmade things (eg, buildings).

Natural features should carry names that reflect and describe their generic environment.

This goes for Whitney and McKinley as well.

- John M.
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Scott Surgent
Scott Surgent

January 6th, 2003, 7:22 pm #5

In Arizona, Humphreys Peak simply refers to the highpoint along the west ridge/crater. The name of the whole mountain mass is more properly referred to as the San Francisco Peaks. From Flagstaff, Humphreys isn't even visible: the big foreground peak is Mt. Agassiz. But by convention the whole mountain is often referred to as Humphreys Peak, without loss of confusion.

Most peaks' names were given by the early explorers or surveyors and stuck because either the peak didn't have a name originally, or had some unpronouncable local name (e.g. The Navajo name for the San Francisco Peaks is something quite bizarre. I don't have it handy now but can look it up at the ASU map library, where I'm headed to soon anyway). So most peak names simply stuck by default.

California: Mt. Whitney isn't obvious from below. Inyo Peak looks bigger from below. Did the early native peoples have a name for the bump that is now Mt. Whitney?

Nevada: Boundary is pretty bland, but I guess it's appropriate. Maybe we can propogate the story of the famous 1850s surveyor Ebenezer Boundary. who made the crucial discovery of straight lines on the ground that delineate and separate various political divisions, thus making the peak's name very appropriate.
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Jeffrey Cook
Jeffrey Cook

January 7th, 2003, 2:30 am #6

I dislike naming peaks after people.

People should be commemorated by manmade things (eg, buildings).

Natural features should carry names that reflect and describe their generic environment.

This goes for Whitney and McKinley as well.

- John M.
I really don't care what name is given to a peak, as long as all the maps and books use the same name. The idea of using descriptive names is interesting, though--do you have any suggestions for some well-known HP's? How about "Sofriggincoldifrozemyjohnsonoff Peak" for McKinley?

I'd think you'd still run out of names relatively soon, or more likely have certain names repeated on multiple peaks (e.g. Baldy Peak)!
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Surgent
Surgent

January 7th, 2003, 4:32 pm #7

In Arizona, Humphreys Peak simply refers to the highpoint along the west ridge/crater. The name of the whole mountain mass is more properly referred to as the San Francisco Peaks. From Flagstaff, Humphreys isn't even visible: the big foreground peak is Mt. Agassiz. But by convention the whole mountain is often referred to as Humphreys Peak, without loss of confusion.

Most peaks' names were given by the early explorers or surveyors and stuck because either the peak didn't have a name originally, or had some unpronouncable local name (e.g. The Navajo name for the San Francisco Peaks is something quite bizarre. I don't have it handy now but can look it up at the ASU map library, where I'm headed to soon anyway). So most peak names simply stuck by default.

California: Mt. Whitney isn't obvious from below. Inyo Peak looks bigger from below. Did the early native peoples have a name for the bump that is now Mt. Whitney?

Nevada: Boundary is pretty bland, but I guess it's appropriate. Maybe we can propogate the story of the famous 1850s surveyor Ebenezer Boundary. who made the crucial discovery of straight lines on the ground that delineate and separate various political divisions, thus making the peak's name very appropriate.
Here goes:

Dook'o'oostiid. Again, this neame refers to the San Francisco Peak massif, which is the traditional western boundary of the Navajo Nation and one of the four sacred summits in their culture.

From "The Navajo Atlas", by James Goodman, University of Oklahoma Press, Norman, 1982.
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Canyon Dweller
Canyon Dweller

January 10th, 2003, 6:48 pm #8

Sure hope they dont change the San Francisco peaks name to that. Dook'o'oostiid is nearly impossible to pronounce unless your a Navajo.
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Gerard Kelly
Gerard Kelly

January 10th, 2003, 9:18 pm #9

First off, I maintain a web site on hiking and peakbagging in Idaho. Lately, I have received a lot of feedback through that site reasoning that Borah Peak should actually be called Beauty Peak.

The reasons:
[*]The person that first ascended the peak (T.M. Bannon) named the peak Beauty.

[*]The benchmark atop the peak is named Beauty.

[*]USGS topos refer to the highpoint as Beauty (and Borah Peak). Check here.

[*]Arguably, Beauty is a better name for the peak.

[*]It was named after William E. Borah while he was still alive, which is against USGS naming policy.

I find these arguments interesting and they actually seem prudent. Not a lot different between this and a few arguments in other states... except it wasn't named after a politician from outside the state (though some in rural Idaho would argue that Boise is its' own state).

Any thoughts?
I live about 60 miles from the peak. Borah is a major landmark. William Borah was known as "the Lion of Idaho" and the peak can be seen to resemble a sitting lion, facing north. Hence for me the name is reasonably descriptive. If originality is desirable, then the Shoshoni name should be used, if that is still available. Beauty Peak-Borah Peak are after all both very recent designations.
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patrick
patrick

January 10th, 2003, 10:24 pm #10

Here goes:

Dook'o'oostiid. Again, this neame refers to the San Francisco Peak massif, which is the traditional western boundary of the Navajo Nation and one of the four sacred summits in their culture.

From "The Navajo Atlas", by James Goodman, University of Oklahoma Press, Norman, 1982.
name th other 3 sacred peaks of the Navajos.
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