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Skelp, Scalp, or Scalp Level?

History buffs from the Sinking Valley region of Tyrone Township, Blair County, have long debated the origins of the name of the tiny village the sits about fifteen miles north of Altoona. On modern maps, the name of the village appears as Skelp, and sits at the foot of Skelp Mountain. However, older maps and newspapers variously refer to the village as Scalp, while others have referred to the village by another name, Scalp Level.

I've pondered this mystery for quite some time, and concluded that the name was changed from Scalp to Skelp because, well, who wants to live in a place called Scalp? Another possibility is that the word "scalp" brings to mind bands of blood-thirsty Indians roving about the valley with tomahawks in their hands, intent on slaughtering innocent, God-fearing white settlers, and so the name was changed out of political correctness.

I finally put some effort into solving this mystery, but came up empty-handed. There really is no definite reason why thi…
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