On October 27, 2007 I wrote a post about how Martha’s Vineyard supposedly got her name… it was cleverly titled “Naming Martha.”
Since that post there has been a story published in the Vineyard Gazette about how Martha got its apostrophe. Not earth shattering news perhaps but still interesting due to the fact that it is protected by federal decree and that only four places in the United States have been granted a legal apostrophe.
Reached at his home this week, Arthur Railton, former editor of the Dukes County Intelligencer, mused on the use of the apostrophe and its placement in the Island name. “An apostrophe suggests ownership, and Martha never owned a vineyard of course, so I don’t know how it got there,” he said. “I’m glad it’s there,” he continued. “Without an apostrophe, it seems like a different name. With the apostrophe, it makes it sound as though it is Martha’s vineyard, but without the apostrophe, I don’t know what it would be.”
If your interest is piqued then read the entire article here.