Michigander or Michiganian? Learn what these local names are known as

Just like the old “tu’mey-tow” vs. “tu’maa-tow” debate, Michiganders, or Michiganians (depending on which side you’re on), have long found themselves in a state of disconnect. It seems that the great divide facing residents of the Great Lake State these days centers around the demonym – the name of a resident of a specific locality – that best suits the people of Michigan. Whether you proclaim yourself a Michigander or a Michiganian may say a lot about who you are and where you come from. Is one better than the other? Can the two co-exist?

The name Michigan is derived from the Chippewa Indian word “mishigama” meaning “large water” or “large lake” – hence the state’s favored nickname.

Many demonyms are derived from the inhabitants of a certain local. For instance, Germany for the Germans and France for the Franks. As in the case of the great Michigan debate, the most common technique for creating a demonym is to add a suffix to the end of the location’s name – this is called suffixation. Often modeled after Late Latin, Semitic or Germanic suffixes, these affixes can also come in irregular forms while highlighting a definitive aspect of that locale; some examples include Nutmegger for Connecticut and Bay Stater for Massachusetts.

A recent poll conducted on six-hundred Michigan residents shows that fifty-eight percent of those surveyed prefer to call themselves Michiganders while only twelve percent favor Michiganian as their choice demonym. The remaining thirty percent were fine with both, did not like either of the two, or simply did not care.

Many residents feel Michigander simply rolls off the tongue easier and that Michiganian denotes an air of pomposity unbecoming of a true Michigan dweller. We’d like to know – what’s your state’s demonym?

BWCA tower fight back in court; A cellphone tower that ATT seeks to erect near the wilderness area has raised a significant challenge to a state environmental law.(NEWS)

Star Tribune (Minneapolis, MN) April 5, 2012 Byline: JOSEPHINE MARCOTTY; STAFF WRITER For decades, a state law has granted any citizen the right to sue to protect Minnesota’s natural resources from pollution, development and even a distant visual blemish on a scenic vista.

Now, in a case with major implications for development around publicly owned natural areas, the Minnesota Court of Appeals will decide how that law applies to a cellphone tower that has been proposed on the edge of the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness (BWCA).

A three-judge panel in St. Paul heard arguments on Wednesday in a lawsuit that has touched on public-safety issues, land development, the rights of local governments and the aesthetics of a blinking red beacon on the edge of the wilderness. website att uverse coupon code

“This is a significant case,” said Sara Peterson, an attorney who practices environmental law and teaches at the University of Minnesota. “It drives to the heart of what we as Minnesotans revere in our natural resources.” The suit was filed in 2010 to challenge a proposed 450-foot cellphone tower — the height of the Foshay Tower — that ATT wanted to build east of Ely and 1 1/2 miles outside of the BWCA. The suit was brought by the Friends of the Boundary Waters Canoe Area, a nonprofit that advocates protection of the million acres of lakes and forest, the most visited federal wilderness area in the nation. It sued under the rarely used Minnesota Environmental Rights Act.

Lake County officials had approved the ATT tower because they hoped to improve cellphone service in the area and because a nearby corridor of land along Fernbrook Road is prime for development, according to court documents and testimony.

ATT argued that the tower and its blinking red light would be seen from only 1 percent of the million-acre wilderness and that it was crucial to ensure public safety and provide cellphone service.

“We feel strongly that this is a public-safety issue and that the facility the county approved is needed to best serve and protect the safety of residents and visitors,” ATT said in a statement this week. here att uverse coupon code

But from its position on a 150-foot ridge, the tower would be visible up to eight miles away during daytime and up to 10 miles away at night, according to court filings. It would be clearly seen from 10 lakes in the BWCA’s most popular area, according to attorneys for Friends of the BWCA. Moreover, they argued, ATT didn’t need such a tall tower. A 199-foot tower could not be seen inside the wilderness area and would provide service to an area only 17 percent smaller, much of it inside the BWCA, they said.

‘Aesthetic resources’ Hennepin County District Judge Philip Bush ruled last year that the tower would violate the Minnesota Environmental Rights Act, a law passed in the early 1970s to protect the state’s natural resources against pollution, impairment or destruction.

Compared to similar laws in the dozen or so other states that have them, Minnesota’s law is unusual because it also protects the “scenic and aesthetic resources” of natural resources owned by any government entity.

“The affected natural resource — broad scenic views with no visible signs of man — is not replaceable,” Bush wrote in his decision.

However, he said, ATT could build the smaller tower, which is now under construction.

ATT appealed, expanding the scope of the case to the point that it could affect development and scenic views across the state — from Voyageurs National Park to the St. Croix National Scenic Riverway to Whitewater State Park.

“If you can’t protect our most scenic resource from this, then we are headed in a bad direction,” said Kevin Reuther, an attorney for Minnesota Center for Environmental Advocacy, a nonprofit law firm that filed written arguments supporting the Friends of the BWCA.

Sharp questions The case’s tensions were clear in questions the judges posed on Wednesday.

“Banning towers anywhere within [sight] of the BWCA — is that what this is intended to do?” asked Judge Larry Stauber.

“The facts of every case will be different,” said Thomas Mahlum, the attorney for Friends of the BWCA.

Much of the discussion focused on the coverage difference between a shorter and a taller tower. Judge Michelle Larkin said a diagram showing the difference “was compelling.” Without adequate cellphone coverage, “the residents would be relegated to a second-class existence,” said ATT attorney Hans German, although he agreed under questioning that most of the residents have land lines as well.

“Lake County is very interested in this service,” he said.

The judges have 90 days to make a decision, though any ruling is likely to be appealed to the Minnesota Supreme Court.

“It is a great test of this statute,” Peterson said.

Josephine Marcotty – 612-673-7


  1. Matt -  February 15, 2014 - 12:36 am

    @the guy with the face AND @Kat.
    Good try @”the guy with the face”, but a Fail on your Michigan History. The U.P. has nothing to do with Indiana – KAT, this is the real reason…Michigan and Ohio were in dispute about a little over 450 Sq Miles of land called the “Toledo Strip”. They actually fought a “war” over the land in the early 1800′s (1835 I believe) – actually they formed militants but there is only 1 recorded shot being fired in the “war”. President Andrew Jackson and Congress stepped in and, in 1836, gave the Toledo Strip to Ohio and compensated Michigan with the land of the U.P. Wisconsin didn’t become a State until 1838 and the U.P. was already designated to Michigan so no claim could be made to it by Wisconsin.

  2. David -  February 4, 2014 - 8:57 am

    MICHIGANDER!!! What an awesome, unique, FUN name. I was born and raised a Michigander. I will always be a Michigander. I remember the 1970′s bumper sticker that proudly proclaimed, “I’m a Michigander”. Let’s make it official, and stop the pukey Michiganian nonsense. Thank you, Governor Snyder, for using the correct term!

  3. Torontomycophile -  September 17, 2013 - 4:12 pm

    This Torontonian wonders about the assurances of true inhabitants in Michigan that they’ve been “born and raised” – or “born and bred” as one or another … (demonym of your choice). Can someone explain to this ignoramus, what the difference is, or which is better?

    Now THAT is a troll …

  4. Kim -  August 19, 2013 - 10:22 pm

    Oops! Forgot to add that the UP has tried to become its own state – the state of Superior.

  5. Kim -  August 19, 2013 - 10:20 pm

    Born and raised a Yooper and a Michigander. I have heard Michiganer, but not Michiganian. And Steve, da language of Yoopers is Yooperese eh.

  6. Stephanie N -  March 13, 2013 - 5:28 pm

    I am a New Jersian not New Joisian. The second one is just the misconception that people in New Jersey talk like that because having a thick New Jersey accent I have never said Joisey.

  7. Skills Local -  January 9, 2013 - 11:02 pm

    Envy people who live in Michigan and call themselves MichiGunners! Sounds way too cool..!

  8. Kaitlyn -  November 27, 2012 - 10:55 pm

    I’ve lived in Michigan most of my life and I’ve heard Michiganian, but I for sure consider myself a Michigander. I feel like Michigander is the people and Michiganian is descriptive. So I’m a Michigander but I go on Michiganian Adventures. But I’m just saying that bc it sounds fun.

  9. Jay Idema -  September 2, 2012 - 11:03 pm

    I was born, raised, and live near Grand Rapids. My family taught me the name for us is (and I consider myself a) Michigander. But I also think Michiganian is fine too. Calling us Michiganite or Michiganese is a good way to NOT make a friend if you ask me

  10. Steve -  July 27, 2012 - 3:52 pm

    Checking Google, 1.13 million pages have the word Michigander while only 134,000 use the word Michiganian, so it’s nice to know that in this case usage wins out and Michigander is the “proper” word in this case. I won’t even bother looking for Michiganite, which sounds like some type of rock or Michiganese, which is probably the language spoken by Yoopers.

  11. peter watts -  July 15, 2012 - 2:07 am

    I’ve just come across Jabbo Smith’s ” Michigander Blues ” – didn’t know of this so had to look it up. ( Great number by the way )

    I live in Dorset, England – my village is named Chideock, so am I a Chidockander o a Chidockian ??? Think I’ll just settle back and listen to some more of Jabbo’s magic – I’ve been called many different things in my life, so another one won’t bother me a lot ! Regards Wattie

  12. Mel -  June 18, 2012 - 8:58 am

    Michigander and Michiganian are demonyms for residents of the U.S. state of Michigan. Less common alternatives include Michiganer, Michiganite, Michiganese, and Michigine. There is no “official” term. While previous governors Jennifer Granholm, John Engler, and Jim Blanchard used Michiganian, current governor Rick Snyder uses Michigander. A 2011 poll indicated 58% of Michigan residents preferred Michigander, compared to 12% for Michiganian, with similar percentages having no preference and not liking either term. Residents of the Upper Peninsula typically refer to themselves as Yoopers instead.

    Michiganian has a long history. It is the term used for the state’s citizens in The Collections of the Michigan Pioneer and Historical Society since the 1870s.

    Michigander is considered pejorative by some due to the circumstances under which the term was coined, but others perceive no such negative connotation. Michigander is attributed to Abraham Lincoln, coining it when he was a Whig representative in Congress. On July 27, 1848, Lincoln made a speech against Lewis Cass, who had been a long-time governor of the Michigan Territory. Cass was then running for president on a “popular sovereignty” platform that would have let states that were conquered in the Mexican-American War decide whether to legalize slavery. Lincoln accused the Democrats of campaigning on the former President Andrew Jackson’s coattails by exaggerating their military accomplishments.

    LINCOLN: “But in my hurry I was very near closing on the subject of military tails before I was done with it. There is one entire article of the sort I have not discussed yet; I mean the military tail you Democrats are now engaged in dovetailing onto the great Michigander.”

    Lincoln thus combined Michigan with gander to form a nickname that made Cass sound foolish like a goose.

    This is from Wikipedia.

    I’ve always called myself a Michiganian and never a Michigander. Sounds too silly to me.

  13. Sonja -  April 22, 2012 - 11:32 am

    I actually don’t understand why ‘moist’ sounds so gross. I personally think the word ‘tutelage’ sounds nasty.

  14. Simon -  February 26, 2012 - 3:29 pm

    Isabella on February 21, 2011 at 3:24 am
    You (and all Geordies) are from Newcastle-upon-Tyne/Northumbria.


  15. Christy -  February 23, 2012 - 1:19 pm

    I’m a Michiganian 60 years now. always have been, always will be.

  16. Paul -  January 19, 2012 - 12:31 pm

    Lifelong Michigan resident here. I learnt both alternatives some 50 years ago in grade school. I chose Michiganian, as “Michigander” just rung rings too hackneyed for me.

    Though, my favorite pronunciation of “Michigan” is by the late and venerable UM football announcer, Mr. Bob Ufer, who interestingly, was not a native Michiganian, but taught us all how to pronounce it: Meechigan!

    May you RIP, Mr. Ufer.

  17. the guy with the face -  January 5, 2012 - 5:08 pm

    The Upper Peninsula was originally part of Wisconsin, but was given to Michigan as compensation for losing land to Indiana and Ohio (small amounts of land, at that);
    The word Michigander does have the whole state name in it; and
    A good (and funny) demonym for Newport News would be a Newspaper.

  18. Karla Whitmore -  January 5, 2012 - 3:49 pm

    My mother has always referred to us as “Michiganders”, but I’ve never liked the term. We aren’t geese, and we most definitely aren’t all males. I live in Arizona now. When people recognize my Michigan-speak, they refer to me as a Michiganian. It makes me feel a little less silly after a string of “yups”, “nopes”, “haftas”, and “sa-ums (somethings)” :P

    Michiganian is the right word. We’re good people. :)

  19. Shoshanna Holzer -  January 2, 2012 - 5:40 am

    As I was born in Michigan, I’ve always preferred to use the yiddish word “Mish-uga-neh”, meaning ‘a little crazy’ as my birthright; or as I spell it “Michiganeh”.
    Likewise, my mother, who was born in Maine, would always call her self a ‘Maine-iac’

  20. Mort Mattson -  December 29, 2011 - 10:08 am

    It is time to put the noun “MICHIGANDER” to rest in the deepest archive in the MI Historical Museum, along with Abe,s derogatory term for Lewis Cass (Joe, 2/20/11) and what Ohio residents thought of us at the time of the “Toledo War,” (Don, 2/21) using the term as an insult. I personally am viscerally affected when I hear any radio personality using the term. It is gender-specific, jarring, and non-lyrical. Not far from the Historical Museum, is a little gem called “MICHIGANIA,” which only sells MI produced or related items…. It has been there for some time! Why not take a visit to the store, the CAPITOL and the MUSEUM? Finally, the term is not in harmony with our awesome “PURE MICHIGAN” campaign for obvious natural reasons (even though goose droppings are biogradeble).

  21. Knut deMuur -  December 28, 2011 - 10:51 pm


  22. Lynn -  December 25, 2011 - 7:46 am

    Saying, “I’m not a Michigander because I’m not a goose,” is just so silly. That’s like saying, “I’m not an American because I’m not a can.” Get real. Also, thinking Michiganian “sounds classy” is just amusing.

    Michiganian is obviously pretentious and lacks personality – Michigander is fun and unique.

    “Floridian” is beautiful and “Maine-iac” is just fantastic!

  23. Sasha -  December 25, 2011 - 7:01 am

    Michigander all the way! I remember getting into this Michigander/Michiganian debate when I was a kid (and again in college) and even back then I thought Michiganian sounded so… silly.

  24. Jake -  December 24, 2011 - 6:09 pm

    Michiganian. Michigander sounds like a bird, and in fact was first used as an insult for that very reason.

  25. Hamachisn't -  December 23, 2011 - 11:52 pm

    I know someone who says that they are Michiganas or Michiganahs (not sure of the correct spelling).

    Me? I’m a New Jerseyite (but please don’t hold that against me).

  26. Manny -  December 23, 2011 - 10:02 pm

    I had thought that I had settled this Michigander/Michiganian matter in the 12th grade. I decided I didn’t like to sound like a silly goose and Michiganian was nice and very proper. I still use it occassionally out of habit, but when Grannie Granholm declared it the “correct” name, I knew something must be wrong. I will now proudly announce and answer to Michigander! Grannie is/was neither a Michigander nor Michiganian and has no say in the matter. She split for California immediately after leaving office and I don’t think the door hit her backside leaving! Now the Californians get to put up with her. Bless her heart, she has never been back! Life is good!

    On other notes: I have never known anyone to call themselves a “Troll”
    but I am not offended by the Yoopers calling us that.

    And I am not from the UP but I do occassionally refer to those living in God’s Country as Yoopers and often do say “Say Ya to da UP, eh!”

    I have been known to answer the phone with: “Ya, Hey Nino!”

    Sandusky for the UP? Ya, we will take that trade!

    That war was a Detroit thing anyway. Many Detroit residents were murdered on the River Raison during the Pontiac wars and that land was sacred to friends and survivors (as it should have been.) They wanted it for their grief, but I think the victims are having more fun on the amusements at the park in Sandusky than they would have with a granite monument in a memorial park.

    That dust-up is long forgotten and has nothing to do with the football rivalry between Ohio and any Michigan team.

    Actually, My understanding of the Chippewa Indian word “mishigama.” It means “Monster Lake” not “big lake.” Which makes more sense if you have ever been out on the Lake in a small boat.

  27. Miles -  December 23, 2011 - 7:14 pm

    I always thought there was a formulaic way of saying these things. But I suppose it really depends on preference. Fortunately the only options for Washington are Washingtonians or Warshingtonians (surprisingly the former is not corrected by auto-correct). The latter, however, is an outdated stereotype that is slowly disappearing with family owned farms and farming communities.

  28. Mike -  December 21, 2011 - 10:06 am

    Born in lower MI and then moved to the the UP. Definitely heard the term “Yooper” used proudly. Other than “troll”, which could only have been around since the Mackinac Bridge (known locally just as “The Bridge” was built in the 50′s, the only other term I’ve heard Yoopers use would be: “downstaters” or “apple-knockers” (based on the fact that apples grown in the UP are generally smaller and tarter than the big, sweet varieties grown in the lower latitudes).

  29. Raychell -  December 19, 2011 - 9:30 am

    I was born and raised in Michigan. I heard both terms and prefer Michiganian over Michi-gander. Sorry I am not a bird! Not only that, I am from Flint and proudly call myself a Flint Stone-ian! : )

    When I’m outside the state, I bypass the name and simply say I’m a Spartan and point to my hand to show where I was born! : )

    A side note: I always thought people from Illinois were called Illini. To say Illinois-ian requires the “s” to be pronounced, which I thought was incorrect.

  30. Ellen -  December 18, 2011 - 7:31 pm


  31. Kyle N. -  December 18, 2011 - 1:14 pm

    I’m currently a Washingtonian and a Seattleite. Though I’ve also been an Ohioan, a Virginian, and an Alabamian, I’m not sure what to call myself originally since I was born in D.C. Am I a Columbian then? a Districter? a Capitolist? I don’t know.

  32. Tom -  December 17, 2011 - 2:58 pm

    Michigano? Michigani?

  33. John -  December 17, 2011 - 10:56 am

    Michigander and Michiganian both sound a tad awkward to me for everyday use. I like Yooper, and Michiganensian though the longest of all has a certain touch of class. But what is the origin of Spartans and Wolverines – both easier words to use? And why exactly is the state divided physically – tell us some more about the Ohio war please.

    Now for some UK oddities:

    Newcastle – Geordie (fans of King George, still a common forename)
    Sunderland – Mackem (they once had a manufacturing tradition)
    South Shields – SandDancer (they held beach dances in the 1910′s)
    Durham – Dunelmian
    Liverpool – Scouse (but why?)
    Manchester – Manc [-unian]
    London – Cockney
    Harrow – Harrovian
    Aberdeen – Aberdonian
    Birmingham – Brummie (not sure why; Brummagem means forged)

    Shropshire – Salopian

    Logically, someone from Bow (London) might be a Bovian, someone from Box (Wilts.) a Boxer, someone from Deal (Kent) a Dealer, someone from Inverness a Nessie and someone from Andover (Hants.) an Android. But they’re not.

    Happily I don’t live in either Ugley (Essex) or Nasty (Herts.). I have seen road signs for the Ugley Farmers’ Market and there is apparently an Ugley Women’s Institute.

  34. Vindu -  December 17, 2011 - 10:00 am

    Very good question, and don’t know how to answer as living abroad. Our state is noted worldwide, however, some of us, as well as I, prefer the local one according to demonym–Howrahian–born in Howrah….

    Thanks it’s a great article; have learned a lot.

  35. Pooky -  December 16, 2011 - 1:58 pm

    Michigander sounds so strange! I guess it might be because the town I’m from is extremely high-and-mighty feeling, but I think Michiganian sound much more eloquent.

  36. Greg -  December 7, 2011 - 11:33 am

    The term is NOT “Michigander”. It is “Michiganer”. No “d”. The state is not called Michigand. It’s Michigan.

  37. Tammi -  July 19, 2011 - 2:51 pm

    I was born and raised a Michigander! Michiganian just sounds really uptight.

  38. Maridee -  June 14, 2011 - 3:15 pm

    I prefer “Michigander.” It just sounds cooler than “Michiganian.”
    However, I do not take offense by the latter. Remember, a rose by any other name would smell as sweet. It shouldn’t be a divisive topic. Both words refer to the same people.

  39. tiptupjr94 -  May 11, 2011 - 5:14 pm

    I used to live in Michigan, and I always said Michigander. Michiganian is just too generic and uptight (even when I would read the word “Michiganian” in school, I would say Michigander.)

  40. M.P. -  April 27, 2011 - 6:54 pm

    I just went through this with a friend not too long ago….military brought my family from Michigan to New Jersey and she asked what we called ourselves. Naturally, we are MICHIGANDERS. I didn’t even know there was such a debate until she pointed out that she heard people from Michigan called themselves Michiganians….I looked at her like she was on drugs.

  41. Owen Thompson -  April 17, 2011 - 4:03 pm

    I live in Auckland, New Zealand so of course I am an Aucklander but New Zealanders are informally called Kiwis, after the native bird, not kiwifruit.

  42. Edward Herrmann -  April 7, 2011 - 1:17 pm

    Michigander naturally . What one hears as a child is imprinted. You know, like on a goose! Is the objection based on gender equity issues? Most women I know are strong enough to live with a “gander” and not an “anian” or am I going to hear from Ms Dworkin? I like “gander.” Brings to mind the outdoors and all those beautiful geese flying to and fro Canada. By the way those in the U.P. may be Yoopers, but those south of the Straits are not Trolls, but Lopers.

  43. Marissa -  March 2, 2011 - 11:49 am

    It’s really amusing actually because people from Illinois never really say “I’m an Illinoisian” or anything like that. Well, I never have heard it anyway. If you come to Illinois, you will most likely hear, “Oh, I’m a Chicagoian”

  44. Diana Barton -  February 28, 2011 - 6:28 am

    I’m originally a Normalite. Yes, folks, we Illinoisans (that’s Ill-in-oy-ans, the first “s” is silent) really DO have a Normal.
    I’ve lived in several states since then, before returning to Illinois. My least favorite appellation was “d— Yankee” defined as a northerner who moves into the south to stay.

  45. Melody -  February 24, 2011 - 2:11 am

    Most of the people in Michigan obviously prefer Michiganders. (Except they’re not geese.) I heard this old joke that went, “What do you call geese found in Michigan? Michiganders.” Oh well…no teasing intended!

    I live in Sydney, where we’re not known as Sydneyers, or Sydneyians, or anything like that. Just simply Sydneysiders. Sounds nice to me, and different. The Melbourne ones are known as Melbourners or Melburnians — Ali Lemer, you are correct. And occasionally, the Queensland ones are called Bananabenders! (That’s pure Aussie slang.) They’re normally known as Brisbaners if in Brisbane, and Queenslanders anywhere else. Then the South Australians — Perthpeople for the Perth dwellers, and anywhere else, just simply South Australians. Then the Aussie slang is Croweater.


  46. wordjunkie -  February 23, 2011 - 4:34 pm

    I have been a Missourian all my life. More specifically, a St. Louisan.

  47. James -  February 23, 2011 - 12:14 pm

    Someone explain how the upper penisula is part of Michigan and not Wisconsin or Canada or its own state, when there is no land connection between the U.P and L.P?

  48. Maya -  February 22, 2011 - 9:09 pm

    Definitely a Californian
    But ‘earthling’ or ‘child of the world’ works fine too

  49. prin09 -  February 22, 2011 - 8:03 pm

    Californian! (and Lebanese, if ur original blood country counts)

  50. Elizabeth -  February 22, 2011 - 6:50 pm

    RoXasK0R&/-\: I want my cookie. Long live Izzard!

    My father was from the Netherlands, which can also be referred to as Holland, yet the people are Dutch, but the Gemans speak Deutch and call their country Deutchland! Maybe we should just give up on the whole idea and go with what one poster said and just use “earthling,” although I prefer Terran.

    If anyone is curious, I’ve been told that the term Holland for the Netherlands was because Holland was it’s biggest region, sort of like thinking of all Americans as New Yorkers or Texans, after a large famous city or one of the largest states. I could be completely wrong though.

  51. Michela -  February 22, 2011 - 5:54 pm

    I was born Torontonian (CA) and then I was Arkansan, and now I’m Ohioan

  52. Affe -  February 22, 2011 - 2:22 pm

    Utahn all the way!
    I would like a clarification. Why does England have so many names? Obviously England is from Angle-Land, but why add Britain, Great Britain, and the like?

  53. louis paiz -  February 22, 2011 - 10:59 am

    thanks for clariffing how to call my self when people ask me. i thought that when saying the patrionimic of an individual that was enough in my case i am an american from coneccticut now i know that i am not a conecctican but a nutmegger. thanks again.

  54. TB -  February 22, 2011 - 10:27 am

    From Michigan and never heard “Michiganian” until now. Ridiculous concept for an article.

    Also, I sidestep the whole issue because I’m from the Upper Peninsula, the U.P. Hence, I’m a Yooper. Not a Michigander or a Troll or (God forbid) a Michiganian. A Yooper. Someone who really understood the area would have written a better article focusing on Yoopers & Trolls.

  55. Michelle -  February 22, 2011 - 7:35 am

    Da Yoopers are Michiganians, and those of us blessed enough to be Trolls . . . are Michiganders.

  56. bjvl -  February 22, 2011 - 7:13 am


    It’s called “Rusty Chevrolet” (to the tune of Jingle Bells), and it’s by a group called Da Yoopers.

    Da Yoopers are also famous for “The Second Week of Deer Camp” and “Da Couch Dat Burps.”

  57. Tony -  February 22, 2011 - 6:59 am

    I was born a Michigander in the Henry Ford Hospital (named after that old Nazi); now I am a Canadian.I never heard anyone say “Michiganian.”

  58. Lj -  February 22, 2011 - 6:47 am

    I prefer Earthling

  59. Ali -  February 22, 2011 - 12:08 am

    I was born a Buckeye (Ohio) and raised a Hoosier (Indiana). I’ve never heard anyone say Ohioan or Indiana- anything, in reference to people from either state. At least Buckeye has a distinct referential meaning, though. No one can really agree what a “Hoosier” is, except that it’s what anyone from Indiana is.

  60. Kitty -  February 21, 2011 - 11:45 pm

    Karen, that’s an intriguing way of looking at it. Nonetheless, I do prefer Minnesotan from a personal standpoint. Heh.

  61. Stephen -  February 21, 2011 - 11:27 pm

    As someone who has lived my whole life in mid Michigan, I am comfortable making the following well thought out and factually sound statement:

    Michiganian > Michigander

    I am not a goose.

  62. Shivani -  February 21, 2011 - 10:40 pm

    Texan ftw! :D

  63. Chinchu J -  February 21, 2011 - 9:12 pm

    I’m from a state in the country India (Indians), called Kerala and we call ourselves “Keralites”.. But I was raised in Dubai. So Im a “Dubai-ite” :)
    Some call themselves “dubai-ans”.. It doesnt go down so well with me.. Seems silly.. Den I moved to Bangalore.. So became a “Bangalorean” & now in Manipal.. So currently I’m a “Manipalite” :)
    My friends are from various places.. Bengali’s, Chennaiites, Hyderabadi’s…

  64. Freemom -  February 21, 2011 - 9:07 pm

    Whether you are a Yooper, a Michiganian or a Michigandander…we are all MICHIGANIACS. I am with Ted Nugent and like Michiganiac the best.

  65. Daniel -  February 21, 2011 - 8:56 pm

    Michigander definitely reminds me of a goose. Born and raised in Florida, I’ve always heard Floridian for the people, but we call our aquifer the Floridan (without the extra ‘i’) Aquifer. Not sure where the mix-up happened, but there’s a fun fact for ya.

  66. Jordan Dustin -  February 21, 2011 - 8:27 pm

    Born and raised in Ohio for the first 11 years, specifically Cincinnati- we either called ourselves Buckeyes, or Cincinnatians. Then I moved to Alaska, where they either go by the specific Native Alaskan clan, or we just call ourselves Alaskans.

  67. Dani Laro -  February 21, 2011 - 8:15 pm

    I live in Ontario… I’m pretty sure every province but Newfoundland goes by ‘Canadians’ we like it simple like that :p I don’t think we have any demonyms but I’ll go google it to make sure.

  68. Palmer -  February 21, 2011 - 8:07 pm

    I’m a Tar Heel – not a fan of UNC, but a North Carolinian. I’ve been a Durhamite, a Detroiter, an Angeleno, and a Floridian.. My grandmother (1896-2001) proudly referred to herself as a Cracker, from central Georgia.

    We see many flatlanders, such as Michiganders, who have retired to Florida but spend their summers in the cool western NC mountains. Because of their poor curvy-road driving skills, they’re known locally as Floridiots.

  69. Samantha -  February 21, 2011 - 7:48 pm

    I’m from Illinois and I am an Illini.

  70. Charles McKinney -  February 21, 2011 - 7:31 pm

    I was borned and raised as a Pennsylvanian and spent half my life as a Delawarean. Currently, I live in Andong, South Korea so would I be called an Andongnian?

  71. sydneysider -  February 21, 2011 - 7:14 pm

    Sydneysider from Sydney, Australia here.

  72. Darin Youngs -  February 21, 2011 - 6:49 pm

    How abotu Michiganista?

  73. Ruby -  February 21, 2011 - 6:27 pm

    MICHIGANIAN all the way!

    I’ve never heard of michigander until I read this article…

  74. Annie -  February 21, 2011 - 5:49 pm

    im from Washington DC and i have always herd Washantonian or Washingtonian

  75. North Carolinian -  February 21, 2011 - 5:35 pm

    I am from north carolina, as you may have noticed. My brother goes to michigan state for collage. I guess you could call him a

    North Caramichiganer

  76. Blueberry -  February 21, 2011 - 5:33 pm

    ???????What’s the official demonym?? or is it a question of choice??

  77. Amanda -  February 21, 2011 - 5:06 pm

    If you live in Michigan, you are a Michigander. Is it a little silly? Yes, but that is just the way it is. I remember when Former Governor Graholm was elected and called the people here “Michiganians” in one of her first speeches. Everyone laughed. They said that she didn’t know better because she wasn’t a Michigan native. There were even silly news stories and polls about what a “Michiganian” was. If it were common, that would not have been the response on the news.

  78. Anonymous -  February 21, 2011 - 4:13 pm

    I have never used a state denonym in a serious context. I left my birth state (New Jersey) at age 7, left the state I grew up in (Florida) at age 24, and lived in Utah for 6 years.
    Now I live in Hokkaido, Japan, and of course I am American, but I don’t think anyone would consider me a true Hokkaidoan no matter how long I stay here. And when I meet other Americans, I have no inclination to say that I am New Jersian, Floridian, or Utahn. I always say something like, “I grew up in Florida.”

    What makes someone a true x-ian, and in what context do you use the term?

  79. Gramma Kim -  February 21, 2011 - 3:57 pm

    I’m a Michigander. I know the story of Senator Abe Lincoln in debate accusing “the Michigander senator” of “dovetailing” onto another senator’s bill. It was a clever play of words, and we Wolverines don’t mind the jibe. But the reason Michigander makes sense is that we have a lot of German and Dutch settlements. For instance, Holland is in Michigan; people from Holland are called Hollanders (Germanic affix), and Hollanders are Michiganders. I think the German connection just makes more sense to our ears because of towns like Holland. Now, keep in mind that the final sound of a place name determines whether the German affix will be -er, -der, or -ter. Someone from Frankenmuth is a Frankenmuther (“moother” not “mother”) because that’s all the final -th needs. Holland has the final -d and only needs an -er. A final -n, however, needs a little oompf, and so we add the -der. A final -s needs the -ter, and so a person from Paines is a Painester. It’s also what some people think I am for posting so much :P

  80. L. Craig Schoonmaker -  February 21, 2011 - 3:21 pm

    Curiously absent from the article and comments is the disgraceful use by dictionaries of “New Jerseyite”, which is absolutely WRONG. The alternate term shown SECOND at Dictionary.com, “New Jerseyan”, is the ONLY correct form. No one born and raised in New Jersey has ever used “New Jerseyite”, and most of us never even heard of it until we saw it in a dictionary. Please, Dictionary.com, REMOVE “New Jerseyite” or at least label it something like “nonstandard” or “obsolete”.

  81. ANONYMOUS -  February 21, 2011 - 2:54 pm

    “Whos ‘ere?”
    to be short, sweet and to the point

  82. David -  February 21, 2011 - 2:28 pm

    Grew up in “the Soo” (Sault Ste. Marie) where we were “Soo-ites.” I never called myself a “Yooper” until I had lived here, “down below” for years. I also never called anyone “trolls” because being BELOW the straits (before we had the bridge) is not the same as being “under” anything.

    I’ve always called myself a Michigander, without the slightest concern for “gander” as a “gender-laden” term. However, there IS a Third Way. I went to Michigan, as in University of, where the yearbook has long been called the Michiganensian, which for me “beareth the bell away.”

  83. Krista -  February 21, 2011 - 2:22 pm

    I hail from Washington State originally.

    We are called Washingtonians, but don’t get me confused with those from Washington D.C. What are they called?

  84. Clay -  February 21, 2011 - 2:08 pm

    I’m a Nevadan and a Renoite.

  85. Grenadian -  February 21, 2011 - 2:04 pm

    Grenadian born (in the Caribbean – from Grenada) Now plain and simple – can somebody say “Texan”?

  86. Eliza -  February 21, 2011 - 1:40 pm

    I’m a Californian

  87. KrisM -  February 21, 2011 - 1:00 pm

    Yeay, Kath! I’m a Toledoan (Ohioan) also from the “North Coast” (Lake Erie shoreline). And we didn’t vote for Kasich either! Toledoans are disgusted and seriously want a recall!
    Also have only heard the term Michiganders. And love the UP and yoopers – there’s a darling song about yoopers driving in the wintertime. Must find it on youtube! :-)

  88. Deets -  February 21, 2011 - 12:55 pm


  89. Alan Zukof -  February 21, 2011 - 12:50 pm

    Proud Kentuckian and Louisvillian here….

  90. Bob Fox -  February 21, 2011 - 12:04 pm

    I’m a Spartan MICHIGANDER from Grand Rapids and in my life never heard “Michiganian” used ever. Continuing the “Michigoose” discussion – are the children Michigoslings?

  91. Bob -  February 21, 2011 - 12:00 pm

    Here’s the deal (Born and raised in MI, lived here 6 decades now.) We’ve always, so far as I’ve known, referred to ourselves as Michiganders. Then someone (probably not a native) thought it seemed a bit embarrassing to be referred to as a name that reminded them of a male goose and started a movement to change it to Michiganian. No one is buying it.. We’re surrounded and isolated by the Great Lakes and thus don’t get the “pass-thru” traffic of other states. We like it that way. Please come visit, we’re very friendly, but don’t call us Michiganians.

  92. Blah -  February 21, 2011 - 11:57 am

    I’m a floridian and proud of it!!!! :P

  93. MF -  February 21, 2011 - 11:54 am

    I’m from Dover, New Hampshire and almost certain it’s New Hampshirite.

  94. Ooga Booga -  February 21, 2011 - 11:40 am

    Hey Nick….another Angeleno here….in Westchester…

  95. Larry Lemons -  February 21, 2011 - 11:31 am

    Hoosier born, but I was, for a time, a Troll or Michigander, and am currently a West Virginian.

  96. Rebekah A -  February 21, 2011 - 11:24 am

    I grew up on Michigan and always heard Michigander but I preferred to say “I am a Mittener” (from the great Mitten state – which also indicated that I was from the lower peninsula) or I would say I was a Wolverine : ) now live in a place that calls it’s residents Hawaiians and that is just fine with me : )

    I second a comment posted earlier. I thought we were going to learn something about the two terms and there distinction. Is there an upper/lower class, city/country, or some sort or discrimination between Michigander and Michiganian? I hope the reporters gets back to that point.

  97. Senchen -  February 21, 2011 - 11:21 am

    I am an Ohioan by birth and residence. My dad was born and raised in Saginaw though, so in my heart I am a Wolverine. GO BLUE!!!

  98. Jason -  February 21, 2011 - 11:11 am

    My colleagues in Buenos Aires call themselves porteños. I’ve never heard them called anything else, except by non-Argentinians.

  99. A. Zubère -  February 21, 2011 - 11:04 am

    Grew up in NJ and, to my knowledge, never heard anyone in Jersey refer to themselves as
    New Jersyans, Jerseyites or Jerseyans. That doesn’t mean that many people didn’t use
    any of the denoyms. Most would just say “we’re from Jersey.”

    However, now that those kids on the tv show “Jersey Shore”and “Housewives of NJ) have helped to cement the idea that people “from Jersey” are superficial, bad -tempered, materialistic ignoramuses, one has to constantly “defend” against anti-Jersey cracks. I was born and raised in Paterson, once the silk city of our country until WW2– along with being a well-known shopping destination until the building of the malls.
    We were Patersonians but seldom used it. P.S. the kids on “Jersey Shore” are from the boroughs of New York City.

  100. Michi Doan -  February 21, 2011 - 10:52 am

    Easyyyy. Californian ;]

    Michigander is a funny name …never heard of such a name. Michiganian, I can probably more understand and relate to.

  101. D Hine -  February 21, 2011 - 10:31 am

    This is interesting. I was born & raised in Upper Michigan so I am a Yooper. Never heard of trolls before……I’ve heard the expression they live “below the bridge”. Someone mentioned the U.P. should’ve been part of Wisconsin…that’s where we always used to shop for school clothes, the big city of Green Bay! Been up on Vancouver Island (B.C. Canada) for a few years but miss “home’ in the U.P. I’ve heard the term Michiganders; not familiar with Michiganians. I don’t mind “Michigander” cuz I love Canadian Geese!! Beautiful creatures. I’ve had to explain what a Yooper is a number of times up here but now and then have come across people who say You are a Yooper? when I mention I’ve originally from Upper Michigan. I was in the Chicago suburbs for awhile but don’t like traffic! I’ll always be a small town girl, even in my senior years now. I will go back “home”. My husband’s grandson’s wife is from Newfoundland out east and they are called “Newfies”, that’s cute! Very interesting comments by all. Enjoy.

  102. lance adams -  February 21, 2011 - 10:19 am

    I have always called myself a “Michigander” as I am from Lansing. People in Indiana I have always called “Buckeyes”

  103. Lauren -  February 21, 2011 - 10:15 am

    The east side of Michigan are Michiganders and the west side are Michiganians…. I am from Michigan and that has always been my experiance of how people qualify themselves

  104. Kit -  February 21, 2011 - 10:00 am

    I’ve lived in Michigan all my life and never refer to myself a Michigander. A gander is a male goose. I am neither. Its Michiganian for me, no matter what the majority or our new governor use.

  105. Anson -  February 21, 2011 - 9:45 am

    I’m a Michigander…born and raised.
    Michiganian is rarely said or heard here, but you do hear it occasionally.
    By and large, we are Michiganders

  106. LC -  February 21, 2011 - 9:34 am

    I was born & raised in Michigan and always refer to myself as a former “Michigander” or more often, a “Troll” due to my hometown being located geographically “beneath” the Mackinac Bridge. I refuse to use the term “Michiganian” and even though I am female will never use the alternate stupid term “Michigoose” either. I know reside in Minnesota so I am a “Minnesotan” but I will always carry my map of Michigan with me, and all you Michiganders know what I’m talkin’ ’bout! No other state can boast of this!

  107. James Harris -  February 21, 2011 - 9:30 am

    I’m a Hoosier from a part of northern Indiana that’s called Michiana, (but I personally think Indigan sounds better…) ..and Michigan people are AWAYS referred to as Michiganders.

  108. Cory -  February 21, 2011 - 9:00 am

    I’ve been a Missouran, a Arizonan, a Californian, a Floridiot, and a Bostonian, but first and foremost always an American.

  109. Anonymous -  February 21, 2011 - 8:40 am

    New Jersian :D (Jerseyan? Jerseyian? I really don’t know the spelling…)

  110. Kelli -  February 21, 2011 - 8:36 am

    While Ohio’s nickname is indeed the Buckeye state, in recent years that term has become exclusively associated with Ohio State University. No thanks.

    So I’m an Ohioan, a Daytonian, and a Flyer. Anything but a Buckeye.

  111. Ben Hassenger -  February 21, 2011 - 8:17 am

    I’m a “Michigander”, and I’m a “Yooper” too!

  112. Alex -  February 21, 2011 - 8:00 am

    I call myself a Yankee or I say I live in New York. (Not the city!!! >_>)

  113. Amanda Sievers -  February 21, 2011 - 7:47 am

    I’m also curious, “where you are from determines how one would address their self”. Is the West Side a Michigander and the East Side a Michiganian? And we seem to have forgotten about the Yoopers… Ya, eh?

  114. Steve -  February 21, 2011 - 7:43 am

    New Hampshire: New Hampshirites or “Granite Staters”.

    I’ve lived a good part of my life in Michigan and most of my extended family still resides there – and I never heard the term “Michiganian” until I read this article.

    Sounds like it might work for folks of Arminian heritage who reside in the Great Lake State (?).

    Or as the name of an enemy race on any of the Star Trek series …

  115. Brian Larsson -  February 21, 2011 - 7:36 am

    I hadn’t heard the term “Michiganian” until recently, when I heard Michigan’s governor use it. She was originally from Canada, so what does she know? It’s “MICHIGANDER”!

  116. Ben W. -  February 21, 2011 - 7:32 am

    Grew up in SW lower Michigan (which makes us “trolls” as we lived “under the bridge” [the Mackinac Bridge]). But always referred to myself as a Michigander.

  117. Paul -  February 21, 2011 - 7:32 am

    Nice Allan Sherman reference, @john r!

  118. Adam -  February 21, 2011 - 7:21 am

    Everyone I know from the Michigan Upper Penisula referred to themselves as U-pers and considered those other state residents located geographically below them – to be just that.

  119. Karen -  February 21, 2011 - 7:20 am

    After one winter in Minnesota, I thought that “Minnesnowtan” was more appropriate and another moniker for the state should be “Minnesnowta.”

  120. bjvl -  February 21, 2011 - 7:14 am

    This Michiganian/Michigander stuff is silly.
    Michigan folks are either Yoopers or Trolls.

    Of course, I’m an expatriate Cheesehead, so take it with a grain of salt.

  121. riley clark -  February 21, 2011 - 7:10 am

    I’m from New Hampshire and I’ve never known what our demonym is. I suppose its New Hampshirite or New Hampshiran. I’m betting it’s the former. Anyone know for certain? Perhaps it’s 603-o-an.

  122. anon -  February 21, 2011 - 7:05 am

    I live in Michigan and right now we could give a rats a$$ about what we’re called. We need jobs and our economy to get better , thats what were concerned with.

  123. Morgan -  February 21, 2011 - 7:01 am

    I’m a Baltimorian Marylander ^_^

  124. ChinaBoy -  February 21, 2011 - 6:57 am

    Born and raised in Hong Kong, I went to college in Michigan and am most used to hearing the term Michiganders.

    What about people from Hong Kong? Hongkongians and Hongkongites are the two demonyms proposed. I personally prefer Hongkongites for it sounds like sons of Hong Kong in the Cantonese dialect.

  125. Kath -  February 21, 2011 - 6:55 am

    I’m a Clevelander…wouldn’t want to associate myself with the rest of Ohio that, for some reason, elected Kasich.

  126. Karen -  February 21, 2011 - 6:46 am

    I’m currently a Hoosier, but was born and raised a Buckeye (an Ohioan).

    If I lived in Michigan, I think I would prefer to be called a Great Laker. In some cases, it’s more euphonious to base a demonym on the state nickname rather than the state name.

  127. don -  February 21, 2011 - 6:31 am

    Michigander was a term that actually came about before Abe used it in the 1840s, cuz he was upset with the Michigan stance on letting in slave states. It came about during the Michigan Ohio War. Michigan wanted their border south to Toledo. It went to Congress who sided with Ohio, gave them Toledo, and the UP to Michigan. From then, Ohioans called folks in Michigan, Michiganders, cuz we squawked like “geese.” It was an insult.

  128. Andy Andersen -  February 21, 2011 - 6:17 am

    It is believed by reliable Michigan historians that Abraham Lincoln wrote a political letter to Michigan’s Lewis Cass regarding the desire of Cass to run for the Office of President. Lincoln supported Tyler, Cass did not.

    In the letter Lincoln disparaged the military prowess of Cass in the War of 1812, and in so doing, first used the term “Michigander”.

    While any political hubris has long since resolved, the term Michigander has endured, as has historic respect for both politicians.

  129. Amanda Barrows -  February 21, 2011 - 5:45 am

    I am a New Hampshiran, I guess. :)

  130. Mary Bengtsson -  February 21, 2011 - 5:02 am

    I’m a Michigander, born and raised! I’ve never liked “Michiganian”.

  131. DJ MichaelAngelo -  February 21, 2011 - 4:53 am

    I was born & raised in Grand Rapids, Michigan – and in nearly three decades I have never once heard the term “Michiganian”. It sounds like the reporter made it up just for this story *lol* Seriously though, everyone I know, regardless of what part of the state they’re from, refers to themselves as a Michigander. The other term sounds pretentious and uppity.

  132. meleagrid -  February 21, 2011 - 4:27 am

    We’ve always called Michiganers ‘meshugganahs,’ which is pretty close to ‘meshigama’ which all goes to prove that the Chippewa are a remnant of the lost tribe of Israel. For only a crazy person would want to live in Michigan, as the Chippewa so well knew.

  133. Ann -  February 21, 2011 - 4:17 am

    I was born and raised in Michigan and have always considered it my home. We were always “Michiganders” and never heard the word “Michiganian.” Perhaps “Michiganian” is a term used for a publication somewhere in the state? Maybe U of M? But in my 23 years in Michigan, “Michigander” was the only term people used and is the word that sounds right.

  134. Emilia -  February 21, 2011 - 3:37 am

    I’m from Louisiana and of course we call ourselves Louisianians or Cajuns. :)

  135. Isabella -  February 21, 2011 - 3:24 am

    Where do you think this writer comes from? She is a Geordie.

  136. PJP -  February 21, 2011 - 2:52 am

    People from Indiana are Hoosiers. In 5th Grade Indiana History class, our textbook suggested three theories for where this demonym came from. One was that during pioneer days, if someone knocked on your door, and you answered “who’s there” with an Indiana drawl, it came out “Hoosier.” The other theory was something about a wrestling match, also during pioneer days, during which someone’s ear was ripped off and left on the ground: “whose ear?” = Hoosier.

    On another note, I recently had a dispute with someone from El Salvador about that country’s demonym. I say Salvadoran; he says Salvadorean. I claim linguistic authority as a native English speaker. He claims authority since it is his country, a spurious claim if ever there was one.

  137. Carl -  February 21, 2011 - 2:20 am

    If you’re a Michigander who supports your governor and his conquest to end the unions, you may call yourself a fascist. Go, corporation!!!

  138. Sydney -  February 21, 2011 - 12:11 am

    100% Californian — nuff said.

  139. Anne -  February 20, 2011 - 11:23 pm

    My fiance is from Indiana…descendant of many generations in Peru, Indiana. He likes to tell the story of why people from Indiana are called Hoosiers. (BTW the nickname for students at Indiana University is Hoosiers…it’s not just a basketball term, tho made famous by their many NCAA championships under Bob Knight)
    Anyway, the story/joke goes that an old farmer heard a knock at the door out in the country in the old days and he called out,”Who’s ‘ere?” Said quickly it sounds like Hoosier. Oh well, it’s cute the way he tells it. :)

  140. kadiew -  February 20, 2011 - 10:58 pm

    You’re a FIP, not a Michigander, unless you move here permanently and drive like a true Michigander.

  141. Samael -  February 20, 2011 - 10:42 pm

    I called us “ducks” once, playing off an abbreviation of ” ‘ganders.”

    No one got it. :p

  142. manners -  February 20, 2011 - 10:18 pm

    Phoenician. Paysonian. Arizonan. Deeper still, descendant of Oregon-trail-using Irish pioneers and heathen colonial Germans. Throw in some Quakers, some Kansans, Ohioans, Oklahomans, Tennesee-people, some brothel owners, preachers, farmers, musicians, and even Johnny Appleseed, and you have: a Phoenician. SO really, these names don’t always denote much cultural difference except for those Minnesoooottans. I can change my accent to match those around me, though a southern drawl comes most naturally.

  143. Wiredog -  February 20, 2011 - 10:16 pm

    I was born and raised a Kalamazooan Michigander. That means one from Kalamazoo County, Michigan (Yes, there really is a Kalamazoo!). I never heard my kin folk referred to as anything other than that or Wolverine until leaving home to serve in the military. Outsiders, primarily Buckeyes and Hoosiers misrepresented us as Michiganians. The correct demonym for a group of people should be determined internally by the group, otherwise we can all call those from the states south of the mitten, Nutheads and Hosers!

  144. christan -  February 20, 2011 - 10:08 pm

    born a Mississippian then became a Montanan, a Missoulian to be exact.

  145. 15bubbles -  February 20, 2011 - 10:06 pm

    I’d call myself a Californian. A Bay Arean? I don’t know. Anyone else from the Bay Area over here? (Mentioned in The Lost Hero! Awesome!)

  146. Natasha -  February 20, 2011 - 9:59 pm

    Adeladians from Adelaide (in South Australia).

  147. Devan -  February 20, 2011 - 9:51 pm

    I’m from Michigan, and hardly anyone says “Michiganian,” it just sounds odd.

    Yet, a lot of people refrain from using “Michigander” because it sort of sounds silly and maybe even ignorant. In the past I’ve been corrected when using this term, as people respond with “a gander is a goose!”

    So, I just say “I’m from Michigan.” And then continue to point to my hand to show where my town is located.

  148. Rebekah -  February 20, 2011 - 9:46 pm

    I’m from Ohio, and there is no debate there. We all united Ohioans. Unless your a Steelers fan, of course. ;)

  149. Wayne -  February 20, 2011 - 9:35 pm

    A resident of Michigan, I’d prefer Michiganian, a term used since the 1870s. It’s more elegant, and puts emphasis on a more pleasant sounding syllable. I think it’s the name of a campus newspaper, too.

    I’m a proud Torontonian, and therefore also an Ontarian. I know a fellow from Halifax, NS, where they’re called Haligonians. Love that one.

    How about those from Nunavut? Nunavummiut

    Happen to hail from Moose Jaw, SK? You’re a Moose Javian (and a Saskatchewanian)

    Check out more in the six Demonyms quizzes on this page:

    But to folks in the US–it sure would be nice to stop using “American” as if it excluded all others in America. Not fair. It’s a bi-continental term, and the fact we haven’t created a demonym doesn’t mean we can co-opt the word. How about United Statian?

  150. CT resident -  February 20, 2011 - 9:31 pm

    Nutmegger and Connecticutter are both used to refer to residents of CT. But Connecticutian is also used.

  151. claudiaV -  February 20, 2011 - 9:08 pm

    I lived in Michigan for forty years and there were only two names we went by: Wolverines or Spartans.

  152. Kat -  February 20, 2011 - 9:06 pm

    I was born & raised a Montanan, now I’m proudly Arizonan. My Hubby is an Illionoian. (I would have thought Illini)

    Now, what my Chi-town husband and I are curious to know is – Why are the two halves of Michigan all one state, why wasn’t the U.P. part of WI or MN? It isn’t logical, topographically speaking, so there has to be some political reason behind it.

  153. Dr. Weiner, Urologist -  February 20, 2011 - 8:50 pm

    Connecticutters => Emo from Connecticut. Hobbits => New HampSHIRE. Losers => Louisiana. Virgins and West Virgins don’t get along with Californicators. Delawerewolves, Texasses, Wisconsinners, and Wyomthings. All are unofficial and funny.

  154. Rebecca -  February 20, 2011 - 8:42 pm

    Born a “Minnesotan” but raised a “Wyomingite.” Currently a “Coloradoan.”

  155. RoXasK0R&/-\ -  February 20, 2011 - 8:38 pm

    Floridian, currently [also called a Sunny in my part of the state]. Born and raised a German (specifically Berliner, without the “ein” cause we ain’t jelly doughnuts [COOKIES TO PEOPLE WHO GOT THAT REFERENCE], though. At different points, an Illinois-ey, an Okie and a Texan Ranger; along with a New Yorker only a year ago. :)

  156. aurora -  February 20, 2011 - 8:32 pm

    Oregon – Oregonian
    Washington – Washintonian
    Alaska – Alaskan. Although a point of clarification, those of indigenous decent are Alaskan Native, not Native Alaskan which is someone who has resided in the state since birth. So technically you could be a Native Alaskan Native. Alaskans also like to refer to anywhere beyond Alaska as ‘outside’ although they aren’t snobbish enough to call newcomers Outsiders. Newcomers are called Cheechakos. One legend behind this name is that during the gold rush locals heard where many of the panners came from and mispronounced the city… of Chicago. Those in the tourist industry like to further abuse the newcomers and refer to them as Cheese Tacos. But that’s just for fun. :)

  157. ChewBobcca -  February 20, 2011 - 8:21 pm

    Why not “Michigander” for men from Michigan and “Michigeese” for the women? It would be taking a linguistic cue from our Romantic roots.

  158. Beth -  February 20, 2011 - 8:17 pm

    Michigander born and bred. I would never consider calling myself anything else.

  159. Nikki -  February 20, 2011 - 8:13 pm

    I’ve lived in Michigan for about 23 years before moving to Texas. As far as which I call myself… I think Michigander sounds a little better than Michiganian, but I normally just say I’m from Michigan. I definitely heard Michigander more than Michiganian. Both sound a little strange… Michiganian is a mouthful and Michigander reminds me too much of geese.

    I have to agree with Kody though. You have to consider which part of Michigan the person is from. Yooper is a pretty common term for people from the U.P. I’ve heard the troll thing before, but more like a joke than anything else. You don’t hear people from the lower peninsula call themselves trolls unlike people from the UP who proudly call themselves Yoopers. [At least one of my neighbors who was from the UP did...]

  160. Elizabeth -  February 20, 2011 - 7:53 pm

    Michigander sounds so much cooler than Michiganian!

  161. Hannie -  February 20, 2011 - 7:49 pm

    I am a Michigander, not a Michiganian, my spell check even goes nuts when I type Michiganian, it sounds ridiculous, I like Michigander a lot better. I agree with Emily, “Michiganian” is not fun to say, I’m a Michigander.

  162. Sam -  February 20, 2011 - 7:40 pm

    Michigander here!

  163. george -  February 20, 2011 - 7:33 pm

    I was born in Odessa, so I am an Odessite, or am I an Odessan?
    Also lived in Montreal, thus a Montreal-er or un montrealais (in French);
    Quebecker or un quebecois (French).
    The demonym must depend on the language that one is using to describe an inhabitant of a certain locale.

  164. Daniel -  February 20, 2011 - 7:31 pm

    not Maine-iacs, we’s up he-ah are of the Mainah people

  165. Cindy -  February 20, 2011 - 7:28 pm

    I’ve lived in Michigan – north of Detroit – all my life.

    I’m a Michiganian. It’s classy.

    Michigander makes me thinkg of a quacking duck. Yuck!

  166. Robin -  February 20, 2011 - 7:26 pm

    I am from St.Croix, Virgin Islands and we are called Cruzans. However, to say it, you would probably spell it like Crujhun. Like Cajun lol.

  167. David -  February 20, 2011 - 7:22 pm

    What would the demonym be for Warner Robins?
    (a city in middle Georgia)

  168. Connie Podleski -  February 20, 2011 - 7:10 pm

    I was born and raised in Michigan and while I am here at school in Kentucky I tell everyone, “I am a Michigander.” Always have been. Funny thing is someone tried to usee the term Michiganian and it is just awkward. I met another guy from Michigan here and he too claims to be a Michigander. It was great to come across this while missing home. ^-^

  169. Xizi -  February 20, 2011 - 7:09 pm

    Looks like everyone here’s below the border.
    Where are the Torontonians?!

    P.S. I LOLed at g’s comment. Yes I just used chat lingo on a website dedicated to proper grammar and spelling.

  170. Annon -  February 20, 2011 - 7:01 pm

    I’m from Michigan and most my family says Michigander, I just say Miches or he/she is a Mich. Bunch of Miches on this post I see Lamo ^_^
    We have a city here Melbourne, Fl we call them Melbums ^.^
    And for the guy that mention Indiana I vote for Indiananese hehe

  171. Sonia -  February 20, 2011 - 6:58 pm

    Funny… “demonym” is not even in Dictionary.com! But I did find it on Wikipedia… demonym, a.k.a. gentilic… Check it out for a whole list of strange ones you may know, and others you may not know:


  172. Heather -  February 20, 2011 - 6:56 pm

    I’m from Michigan and I’ve never heard anyone say Michigander or Michiganian. It’s always Yooper(U.P.) or Troll(L.P.).

  173. Queen Sardonic -  February 20, 2011 - 6:49 pm

    Born a Minnosotan, stayed a Floridian, loved being a Georgian, and reside now as a South Carolinian. WHOO!

  174. John S -  February 20, 2011 - 6:43 pm

    I was born in Michigan and have always been referred to myself and others as Michiganders. I have never heard of a Michiganian except on the national news.

  175. M.C. -  February 20, 2011 - 6:34 pm

    One important Michigan group has yet to be mentioned: the Trooper. No, I’m not making this up. Troopers are Michiganders/Michiganians who are either native Yoopers who have moved to the L.P., native Trolls who have moved to the U.P., or those who are indigenous to both peninsulas.

  176. diane -  February 20, 2011 - 6:20 pm

    I’m a lifelong Michiganian. Actually, our Governor Granholm declared “Michiganian” the correct terminology about 3 or 4 years ago. Problem is, few people seemed to have paid much attention to this declaration. It seems that so many people find that “Michigander” comes more trippingly off the tongue and prefer it as a result. I agree with others in this forum who’ve said it sounds like a goose (“gander”), so I prefer Michiganian. Besides, it incorporates the whole state name in it and adheres to the -ian suffix. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it. :-)

  177. Brad -  February 20, 2011 - 6:13 pm

    As a native of Michigan all my life, I have never heard the term Michiganian used. It is always Michigander. The article is a little misleading in the sense that I don’t think there’s actually very much real debate on the matter (only 12% of the native population prefer the term Michiganian according to this survey). And hooray for Kody for bringing up the “Yooper”/”Troll” nomenclatures, too! Quite a fun topic!

  178. Jill -  February 20, 2011 - 6:09 pm

    I’m a Marylander, and I have relatives who are Pennsylvanians, Texans, and Georgians. I have friends who are Californians, Oregonians, Floridians, and Virginians, to name a few.

  179. A -  February 20, 2011 - 5:52 pm

    We from the non-Chicago part of Illinois are Illinoisans.

  180. Big Mick -  February 20, 2011 - 5:44 pm

    I was interested in what Ali Lemer had to say about us Melburnians. I was born and bred in St. Louis (people here ALWAYS correct me and say St. Louie!). But some of the people in Oz use the old Cockney’s rhyming slang. Some guys I used to work with when I first came to Melbourne some 34 years ago called me ‘Seppie’ or ‘Septic’ as a nickname for ‘Septic Tank’, which of course is Cockney rhyming slang for ‘Yank’. I’ve been thinking about applying for dual citzenship, but people here would still never accept me as being Australian, so why bother? I’d prefer to simply be known as a child of the world.

  181. Elizabeth -  February 20, 2011 - 5:29 pm

    I’m Virginian, but I’m from Virginia Beach. We have no term I’ve ever heard of in my entire life here for a Virginia Beach resident. We also have Norfolk, Portsmouth, Suffolk, Chesapeake, Newport News, and Hampton to round out the “Seven Cities” of Hampton Roads. I can’t imagine how funny some of those would be. Norfolker?? Newport Newsian?? I guess nobody evey figured it out since we’re a big military area with very few locals (like me!) or permanent residents, except for military retirees.

  182. Alan -  February 20, 2011 - 5:25 pm

    I was born and raised in Michigan, and I like Michigander and Michigoose for male or female respectively. As for really weird demonyms, see Glasgow (Glaswegian), Manchester (Mancunian), and Halifax (Haligonian) for examples of non-intuitive choices.

  183. Kathy Benson -  February 20, 2011 - 4:30 pm

    I thought this question was settled in the 1960′s. I was born and grew up in Michigan and in the 1960′s, I heard on the radio in Detroit, that the official name of those from Michigan was finally decided to be “Michiganians” because we, the inhabitants, didn’t want to sound like ducks, birds or geese. Seriously!

    No matter what, Michigan was a great place to grow up in! Good education, great people and alot of culture, music, art and technical talent that many outside of Michigan aren’t even aware of!

    My hope is that more people move to Michigan and take advantage of its affordable housing market with its gorgeous homes, some of the best in the country, and its good work-force, diverse nationalities with the great food and music. The Ethnic Festivals were wonderful! Very enjoyable to share heritages with each other!

    We need to see ethics back in the auto-business, both with the corporations and some of its workers. If that happens, Michigan will florish again.

  184. Karen McCarthy -  February 20, 2011 - 3:57 pm

    I spent my childhood and adolescence in Connecticut and NEVER heard anyone called or referred to as a “Nutmegger.” We always called ourselves “Connecticut Yankees,” probably after the Mark Twain book.

  185. Adam -  February 20, 2011 - 3:37 pm

    Delaware – Delawarean (but pronounced Delaware-e-in). They do that with cities here, too. People from Dover are Doverians.

  186. Brittany -  February 20, 2011 - 2:58 pm

    Born and raised in Texas, and have always considered myself a Texan..Yee-Haw. I grew up specifically in Houston, so I’m also a Houstonian.

  187. Joop deBruin -  February 20, 2011 - 2:51 pm

    Absolutely, unequivocally I am a native Michigander. Anyone calling me a Michiganian will soon feel a pain from me slapping them upside of their brainian.

  188. Joe Grimm, journalism prof, MSU -  February 20, 2011 - 1:55 pm

    I have written a few books about Michigan history and can confirm that the term “Michigander” is attributed to Abraham Lincoln in 1848 as a derisive reference to Lewis Cass, territorial governor of Michigan and presidential contender. Lincoln said, “… I was very near closing on the subject of military tails before I was done with it. There is one entire article of the sort I have not discussed yet; I mean the military tail you Democrats are now engaged in dovetailing onto the great Michigander.”

    I am proud that Lincoln invented our demonym and that we turned an insult to our benefit, much as Americans did when they put the British insult “Yankee Doodle” into song.

  189. Thomas -  February 20, 2011 - 1:50 pm

    I’m from dublin in ireland,
    Most common names are either a Dub or Dubliner,
    I prefar dubliner myself.

  190. Lorelei Boice -  February 20, 2011 - 1:48 pm

    I live in Western Lower Peninsula of Michigan, and I’ve heard people call themselves “Trolls” because we live under the Mackinaw Bridge. At my house we call ourselves Michiganders! I used to live closer to the Bridge and would travel North a lot, while we were up there people could tell we weren’t “Yoopers” (U.P.ers).

  191. Nova Scotian -  February 20, 2011 - 1:46 pm

    Halifax residents = Haligonians

  192. thirtypointbuck -  February 20, 2011 - 1:41 pm

    Proud to be a Michigander.

  193. Zane -  February 20, 2011 - 1:14 pm

    I’m a Texian, and nothing else. Texan is acceptable, but since the earliest way I’ve seen it spelled it Texian, than that’s what I call myself.

  194. john rhea -  February 20, 2011 - 6:31 am

    I’m Melvin Rose of Texas and my friends all called me Tex. When I lived in ole New Mexico, they used to call me Mex. When I lived in ole Kentucky, they called me ole Kentuck. I was born in ole Shamokin which is why they call me Melvin Rose.

  195. g -  February 20, 2011 - 6:25 am

    …how ’bout them Maine-iacs?…

  196. Catherine -  February 20, 2011 - 6:21 am

    People from CT frequently call themselves ‘Nutmeggers’ after the ‘Nutmeg State’ – it got that name at a time when nutmeg was ‘cut’ with wood to deceive Connecticut housewives.

  197. Barbarian -  February 20, 2011 - 6:05 am

    My family lived in Santa Barbara, CA and my cousins in Pacific Palisades, CA. We laughingly refered to ourselves as Santa Barbarians and them as Pacific Palisadists.

  198. Marc -  February 20, 2011 - 6:03 am

    We in Florida have solved the problem by remaining Florida Crackers – ( a name interestingly enough derived from the sound of the whips used by the cowboys here in the old days.) You might not know it from our advertising, but FL is one of the biggest cattle states in the US.

  199. Emily -  February 20, 2011 - 6:03 am

    I’m from Michigan, and proud of it! Michiganian isn’t nearly as fun to say, so I”m a Michigander all the way :)

  200. Allyson -  February 20, 2011 - 5:56 am

    I am a true Michigander! Michigander fits better than Michiganian. I have lived in Michigan all my life and I have never heard anyone call themselves a Michiganian. It is always Michigander!

  201. Erin -  February 20, 2011 - 5:54 am

    Having lived on both sides of Michigan for over 50 years–on the west side for most of those years–the only name I’ve ever heard and used is “Michigander.” There’s a joke about a “Michigoose…”

  202. Katie B. -  February 20, 2011 - 5:46 am

    I’ve been a Minnesotan virtually all my life. I don’t think there’s ANYTHING other than “Minnesotan” (though I’m sure that, after our State Bird, some would call us Loons ;) )

  203. Red -  February 20, 2011 - 5:34 am

    I’m from Georgia, but I think I like “American” better. (:

  204. Merk Van -  February 20, 2011 - 5:12 am

    I was born a Michigander and am now a South Dakotan; proud to be both.

  205. trilby -  February 20, 2011 - 4:35 am

    Well, I have no personal connection to the issue but “Michiganian” sounds better, just neutral.

  206. dr -  February 20, 2011 - 4:00 am

    Liverpudlian for a resident of Liverpool, Haligonian for a resident of Halifax

  207. Samantha -  February 20, 2011 - 3:55 am

    All my life, I’ve been living in Illinois, which is would technically make me an Illinoisian, but I swear I go to Michigan so much that I would have to count myself as a Michigander.

  208. Steve Lipson -  February 20, 2011 - 3:28 am

    Years ago I heard that people from Michigan were known only as Michiganians, and that the term Michigander was coined by Abe Lincoln as a derisive term. True? Perhaps a Michiganian can shed light upon this.

    I’ve twice lived in Michigan but now live in Indiana. I recently read that Hoosiers are Kentuckians who ran out of money on their way to Michigan. We have almost as many explanations of the term Hoosier as we have people living here.

    I was born and raised in Ohio. That makes me a Buckeye forever!

  209. Jean K. -  February 20, 2011 - 3:12 am

    My husband is from Michigan, and I’ve only heard of the people there referred to as “Michiganders”. I’m from Wisconsin, and we’re known as Wisconsinites.

  210. kody -  February 20, 2011 - 2:31 am

    To further confuse the issue, the Upper Peninsula of Michigan (the U.P.) is home to a special class of…well, people from Michigan: the Yoopers! This name is derived from the abbreviation U.P. Like the San Francisco 49ers, folks from the Upper Peninsula are – U.P.ers — Yoopers. Additionally, though meaning no harm Yoopers will often call those of us who live in Michigan’s lower peninsula “trolls” because we live under or below the bridge, Michigan’s famed Mackinac bridge which connects the two peninsulas. Whether you are a Yopper Michiganian or a troll Michigander, I salute you all, Michgan folk are good salt of the earth people. I am proud to be from such a pleasant peninsula.

  211. Wilbur -  February 20, 2011 - 12:12 am

    I’m currently a Utahn, but I have been a Washingtonian, Ohioan, Idahoan, Coloradan and for a while “un Argentino Bonarense”, which is an Argentine (always preferred that to Argentinean) from Buenos Aires. While there I was interested to note that they don’t refer to us as Americans (since technically, from Alaska to Tierra del Fuego, we are all Americans). They say Estadosunidense (translates to United Stateser). That is why you will see labels marked “Made in the USA/Hecho en EE UU.” EE=Estados (plural) and UU=Unidos (also plural).

  212. Cate -  February 20, 2011 - 12:09 am

    I’m a proud Michigander, but to be more specific, I’m a Troll (ie, from the L.P.). Usually when someone says Michiganian, they get odd looks and a few concealed laughs.

  213. Kitty -  February 19, 2011 - 11:26 pm

    I’ve always considered myself Minnesotan if anything.

  214. G G -  February 19, 2011 - 11:09 pm

    Californian. Now a Georgian. Originally from a placed called Blythe. We were Blythians. Nice ring, eh? I’ve heard Hong Kong residents are called Honkies. Many of my asian friends insist the -ese suffix is derogatory. Was also a San Bernardinite, Phoenician(Arizonan not Arizonian), Kinmenese(Taiwanese not Chinese) and a Floridian for a while there.

  215. misky -  February 19, 2011 - 10:58 pm

    Blue, no true californian can ever be something else. If so, they were never californian to begin with. Its the law!

  216. Kim -  February 19, 2011 - 10:36 pm

    I’m from Massachusetts and I’ve heard people use ‘Bay Stater’, which I’m pretty sure is the official demonym, but I personally like to call myself a ‘Massachusian’ because it’s much more fun to say and Bay Stater is just stupid. I may have made that one up though and I’ve never heard anyone else say it ;)

  217. Nick -  February 19, 2011 - 10:30 pm

    Los Angeles here.

    We call ourselves Angelenos.

  218. Suzanne -  February 19, 2011 - 10:27 pm

    And Oregon-dwellers are called Oregonians.

  219. j -  February 19, 2011 - 10:15 pm

    I’m from the great state of Michigan and as a child I was taught I was a Michigander. I personally don’t care for it because it reminds me of a goose? HA! But my interst in this article was; stated that where you are from determines how one would address their self. Did I miss this or maybe the reporter may want to finish the story. Go Michigan!

  220. Rebecca -  February 19, 2011 - 10:13 pm

    Born and raised in Michigan and everyone I know uses Michiganders. In fact, I’ve never heard Michiganian! I’m definitely a Michigander. :D

  221. Blue -  February 19, 2011 - 8:56 pm

    I’ve been a Californian, Chicagoan, Vermonter and Utah’n so far in my life. But I work in Boston (Massholes is a term I’ve heard people refer to themselves as, as well as Bostonians) and New York City–so, New Yorkers. Indianan’s sometimes called themselves Hoosiers, but that seemed random for those not into bball. I’ve always wondered what the people in Connecticut would say. And New Hampshire. Most states are easy…just add an “an” or “ian”

  222. Karin -  February 19, 2011 - 8:50 pm

    I remember coming across this issue on a road trip through the state. Very interesting, to say the least.
    I would identify myself as ‘Minnesotan’, plain and simple!

  223. Howard Daniel -  February 19, 2011 - 8:40 pm

    I’ve always thought of Michigan residents as Michiganders — unless they’re of the female persuasion, in which case they’re Michigeese.

  224. Hppsi -  February 19, 2011 - 8:35 pm


  225. Jennifer -  February 19, 2011 - 8:23 pm

    People from Indiana and “Hoosiers”!

  226. Anonymous -  February 19, 2011 - 5:00 pm

    Very interesting read. I don’t really know of any demonyms in Indiana…there most likely is one, I just don’t know what it is. :o/

  227. Ali Lemer -  February 19, 2011 - 4:24 pm

    I was born and raised in NYC, so of course I’m a New Yorker. However, I currently live in Melbourne, Australia. It’s the capital of the state of Victoria, the residents of which are naturally called Victorians, but people who live in Melbourne itself are called Melburnians (minus the O).

    • Scott C. Day -  June 3, 2015 - 7:19 am

      I have always called people from Michigan, Michigians, which I like better than either option given. I will continue to use the term. By the way Michigan, you are out of timeouts.


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