The Great Lakes are peppered with small and large islands alike, but a question has occurred to me about island names.

Their are some very well known islands in the Great Lakes, like Mackinac Island,  Beaver Island, Drummond Island and even Punk Island, which is in the Grand River.

Have you noticed anything? Why Do We Say “Island?”

They are all given names that indicate they are an island. In other words, the name of the island, followed by the word "island" as if we wouldn't know what an island was, which most of us do.

Which is fine, but my question is this: why do some islands have 'island' in their name, while others don't?

For instance, that State of Hawaii can be referred to as 'The Hawaiian Islands', but they would look at you cockeyed if you called their islands 'islands' like 'Oahu Island' or 'Maui Island', those are known as just Oahu and Maui.

The country of Guam is an island, but it's not called Guam Island. The same with French Polynesia, which is the official name for a country which consists of many islands, none of which is tagged with 'Island'.

To make matters worse, Coney Island in New York City isn't an island at all. Neither is Coronado Island in San Diego. They are both bodies of land connected to the main land by thin strips of land, which would make them more of a peninsula.

And don't even get me started on islands on islands, like the largest lake island within a lake island: Treasure Island, in Lake Mindemoya on Manitoulin Island, in Lake Huron.

And what about tiny little islands in a stream? Do they have names?

Tom Maxwell, who is in the “Long Island Do You Remember?” Facebook group, asks:

Is it really necessary to say Island after Long Island?

Why isn’t Long Island just called “Long?”

Same with Staten Island. Why not just “Staten.”

Many Islands have names without having the word Island after the first name.

How about a change here?

We don’t say “Michigan State” why do we always call islands . . . Islands?

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