Welcome to Revel-Stoc

Many Revelstokians may not know the history of their city's name.

 

>>By Rory Luxmoore

Winter 2014, Issue #39


 

What is in a name? Well, a lot, actually.

Take ‘Revetstoke’ for examiple. Few towns can boast having such a dynamic and interesting name. It’s difficult to go through your day without hearing some reference whether intentional or not to our name. (“I’m ‘stoked’ to see the snow.” “I’m revved up about the upcoming weekend.”) Local businesses and organizations are also making good use of the name.

Yet, who would think our cool name’s history started as far back as 1066?

The Battle of Hastings pitted the Norman-French army of William II against the English army of Harold II.


Richard Revel was given a parcel of land, called a ‘stoke’, in the county of Devon in southwestern England.


The Normans earned a victory and along with their spoils went land for some of their senior soldiers. One of the recipients was Richard Revel. He was given a parcel of land, called a ‘stoke’ in the county of Devon in southwestern England. Many centuries later in 1885, Edward Charles Baring was raised in peerage and was entitled to become a Baron and with, would inherit a new name. He had obtained a house and parcel of land that was named Revelstoke—the land of Revel. Baring chose the name Revelstoke in recognition of his new home.

BestfOfReved—LordRevelstokeBaron Revelstoke was head of the family firm of Barings Bank based in London. England. When the Canadian Pacific Railway (CPR) was nearing completion, it faced financial difficulty.

Who would think our cool name’s

history started as far back as 1066?


Baron Revelstoke was head of the family firm of Barings Bank based in London. England. When the Canadian Pacific Railway (CPR) was nearing completion, it faced financial difficulty.

Barings Bank raised over 10 million pounds to ensure the railway would be completed. In recognition, then-CPR president George Stephen, named the beautiful settlement along the shores of the Columbia River after its senior partner.

Many Revelstokians may not know the history of their city’s name, however, they are most likely aware of all the fun that can be had with it. Local businesses and organizations have cashed in on the ‘Revelstoke’ name. Here are but a few examples of local Revelnames:

And the ‘stokeisms’ abound. The highway is closed again. Looks like we’re ‘Revelstuck.’ Nothing to do but ‘revel’ in all the snow.” In winter our town transforms into ‘Revelsnow’ and many get ‘stoked’ about shredding some gnar. In the summer we get ‘revved’ exploring ‘Revelbush.

Other towns only wish they could enjoy such a cool name. Well, perhaps they can. You could be ‘Golden’ on your skis in Golden or ‘Armstronged’ out of a deal in Armstrong. You could ‘field’ a job in Field or ‘cache’ your money in Cache Creek. You might find yourself ‘looped’ in Kamloops, ‘canned’ in Duncan and finally ‘burned out’ in Bumaby. Yet you may find some hope in…well you know where.

What makes our town’s name so cool? Perhaps it’s because the compound word contains two positive, dynamic verbs. Merriam-Webster dictionary defines ‘revel’ as taking intense pleasure or satisfaction in. It defines revved in a few ways: as becoming more excited especially in anticipation; to make more active or effective; or to stir up. Lastly, stoked is defined as being very excited.

These are fitting words for our active, nature lovin’ town. Heather Lea, founder of Reved Quarterly, reflects on the naming of her magazine. “I came up with ‘Reved’ as a play on the word ‘Revelstoke,’ having only one ‘v,’ and also the verb ‘revved,’ which seemed to me a positive and invigorating word to use for a magazine.”

We are not the only ones who think the name ‘Revelstoke’ is cool. In the September 2013 issue of Trail magazine, it boldly states, “We hereby nominate this wee, Canadian Rockies town for the coolest trail-town name, ever.”

Despite the geographic blunder, (Revelstoke is actually situated between the Monashee and Selkirk mountains) we are still proud of our name.

Interestingly, the word ‘stoke’ is originally from the Old English word ‘stoc,’ meaning ‘place.’

This makes sense. Perhaps Revelstoke is indeed the place to revel in; to be revved and stoked about; to play, to create, to live. Regardless, we are blessed with being given a name that closely matches the nature of our town and allows us to have some fun in the process.

Thank you, Richard Revel…

 


 

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