Friday, February 15, 2013

Charleton + Charlton (for Charlton + Charleton)

I came up with today's typo the way I so often do—by making it myself. In such cases, I find that it's usually a good one, but not always one that I'm eager to illustrate. In a rather vain attempt to find something or someone to write about other than Charlton Heston, I was rather surprised to learn that there's a town in Saratoga County, not far from where I live, called Charlton. I've probably gone past it dozens of times and never really noticed the sign. But while I'm certain this Charlton is charming, there doesn't seem to be a whole lot more to say about it, other than the fact that it was founded in 1792, and named after a physician and a place in England. Therefore, I guess it's back to Moses on the Mount packing heat. Charlton Heston, who is mostly known for his impassioned support of the purported rights of gun owners, has not always been a conservative, however. He started out his career favoring Democrats for president, as well as liberal causes such as civil rights. He gradually drifted rightward, though, and famously fought with Ed Asner, both presidents of the Screen Actors Guild. By the early seventies, he had Richard Nixon's back and later Ronald Reagan's. Heston was born "John Charles Carter" in 1923 and, at least according to some sources, in a hamlet known as "No Man's Land" in the wealthy Chicago suburb of Wilmette, Illinois. Although it sounds a bit like a mix of "Charles" and "Carter," "Charlton" was actually his mother's surname; "Heston" was the surname of her second husband. So this son of a gun definitely kept it in the family, like a lot of law-abiding owners do with their own firearms. Heston died in 2008, but it doesn't look as if the Second Amendment is going away anytime soon. In the meantime, there were 29 misfires of Charleton for Charlton (and sometimes vice versa) in OhioLINK today, and 126 in WorldCat.

(Charlton Heston in the trailer for the film The Ten Commandments, 1956, from Wikimedia Commons.)

Carol Reid

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