Neva, not named for Nevada

American actress Neva Patterson (in 1952)
Neva Patterson

I mentioned actress Neva Patterson in yesterday’s post about Diana Lynn.

Neva was born Neva Louise Patterson in 1920, on an Iowa farm close to the town of Nevada (pronounced nev-AY-duh).

So she must have been named for her birthplace, right?


Her name isn’t a contraction of Nevada. Instead, it came from one of her mother’s friends.

According to a 2002 article in the Des Moines Register, Neva had “spent much of her life explaining that she really wasn’t named for her hometown.”

Do you like the name Neva? (How would you pronounce it?)

Source: Nelson, Valerie J. “Neva Patterson dies at 90.” Los Angeles Times 16 Dec. 2010.

Image: Screenshot of the TV series Suspense (29 Jul. 1952)

[Latest update: Apr. 2024]

One thought on “Neva, not named for Nevada

  1. I know a Neva, her name is pronounced “Nee-vuh”. As far as I know this is her whole name, but another lady in town (she is now deceased) was named Nevada, pronounced like the town in Iowa. She was called Vada, “vay-duh”.

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