It doesn't matter if you've lived in Illinois all your life or just moved here, we're willing to bet you've butchered these town names a time or two (or one hundred).

Mispronouncing Illinois Towns

I've lived in Pecatonica, Illinois for almost 2 years now, but just the other day I learned some people have no clue how to properly pronounce the village's name.

5 Things You Didn't Know About: Pecatonica, Illinois
Ben Jacobson

If you pronounce Pecatonica PEK-uh-TAHN-ih-kuh, you are doing it correctly by today's standards, but I just learned that might not be the way it was originally pronounced.

Just follow me for a minute while I attempt to make a long story short...

Last week my parents (who live in Rockford) met a man in Wisconsin that told them he would be visiting Illinois, specifically PEEK-uh-TIN-eek-AH, in a couple of weeks. The man had a thick Polish accent, so it took my folks a while to figure out where he was referring to, but then they did, and we all got a good chuckle out of it.

When I told my born-and-raised-in-Pecatonica mother-in-law the funny mispronunciation story, she informed me that PEEK-uh-TIN-eek-AH might actually be the correct pronunciation in regards to the land originally settled by the Pecatonica Indians.

After getting my mind blown by that fact I got to thinking; what other towns and cities in Illinois are often mispronounced?

5 Illinois Towns That Are Often Mispronounced

I searched for, and read through, several different articles about the most mispronounced towns and city names in Illinois, (check out this article that contains a BUNCH of great ones), but here are 5 that ranked near the top of every list I found.

1. Loogootee- (LOH-guh-TEE)

2. Ipava- (eye-PAY-vuh)

3. Cairo (KAIR-oh)

4. Shabbona- (SHAB-buh-nuh)

5. Vergennes- (ver-JENZ)

Is there another Illinois town that you find yourself, or other people, constantly mispronouncing? See us a message on the app and let us know what it is!

Rockford's New Country Q98.5  logo
Get our free mobile app

How Many of These Undesirable Nicknames for Illinois Towns Have You Heard?

It seems every town or city in Illinois has a different name. It's the derogatory name that locals use and noobs will soon understand. Some are pretty dirty.

The 25 Smallest Towns in Illinois

These towns are so small, if you blink, you'll miss them.

More From Rockford's New Country Q98.5