Big Apple info from B. Popik

Gerald Cohen gcohen at UMR.EDU
Thu Aug 31 02:55:47 UTC 2000

    In an Aug. 30 message Barry Popik wrote:

 >     Gerald Cohen surely doesn't want all this.
>     From the MAIL AND EXPRESS (NY), 26 September 1885, pg. 5, col. 4:
        [There then follows various information pertaining to the
non-existence of "The Big Apple" as an early nickname of NYC.]

----Actually I am interested in all of Barry's new information about "The
Big Apple."  I believe that my monograph _Origin of New York City's
Nickname "The Big Apple"_ (Frankfurt a. M.: Peter Lang, 1991) already
presents the evidence that prior to 1927 "The Big Apple" was not used as a
nickname for NYC. (The 1909 attestation, as already mentioned, is
completely isolated and almost certainly means "overweaning big shot.")

     But additional negative evidence cannot hurt.  The search for "The Big
Apple" as a nickname for NYC around, say, 1910, is a search for the will o'
the wisp, and Barry's additional negative evidence reinforces this

     I will write a check of $100 to the first person who can provide me an
attestation of "The Big Apple" as a nickname for NYC prior to 1920
(excluding Edward Martin's controversial 1909 quote).  This is a serious
offer, but I see my money as safe as if it were in the bank.

----Gerald Cohen

gcohen at

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