Garand Name Pronunciation: Who’s Right?

by
posted on March 5, 2012
keefe2015_fs.jpg

Q. I watch “American Rifleman Television” and hear Mark Keefe and Michael Parker pronounce the name “Garand” like “Ger-und” and in the same show someone else will pronounce it like I do, which is “Guh-rand.” What’s the deal? Are those two misspeaking every week?

A. Major General Julian S. Hatcher, U.S. Army, (later the technical editor of American Rifleman) while an Army officer at the U.S. Springfield Armory in Springfield, Mass., worked with, shot with and was close personal friends with John Cantius Garand in the 1920s. As a matter of fact, in my personal collection, I have a Christmas card from Maj. And Mrs. Julian S. Hatcher to Mr. and Mrs. John C. Garand from 1927. In Gen. Hatcher’s "The Book of the Garand," printed in 1948, there is a footnote regarding the pronunciation on page one that reads: “Pronounced with G as in go, and the stress on the first syllable, to rhyme with parent (except the final sound is d instead of t).”

That is how a man who knew and was friends with the inventor—a French-Canadian born on Jan. 1, 1888, in St. Remy, Quebec, Canada—pronounced the last name of the man who designed the “U.S. Rifle, Caliber .30, M1.” Personally, I am willing to take Gen. Hatcher’s word for it, as I would on almost anything.

I suspect that as the inventor’s name supplanted “M1” as the common designation for the rifle, the pronunciation moved to “Guh-rand.” It was the millions of American servicemen and shooters who used the rifle paying homage to the inventor that led to the more commonly heard pronunciation. And I am not going to tell anyone, especially those that used the rifle in combat, that they were wrong. Call it what you like, and thank you for your service.

This topic came up at the American Rifleman Special Session we did on the Garand at the Annual Meetings. We know how John C. pronounced his last name from Gen. Hatcher, but NRA Second Vice President Allan Cors relayed that John’s son answers the phone “Garand residence.” [Guh-rand.]

I find myself slipping up at times, but try to use the Hatcher specified pronunciation when referring to the inventor. Garand had a distinctive accent his entire life, and he appeared in the U.S. Army Signal Corps “The Big Picture Commence Firing.” In the video the inventor talks about infantry rifles. Here, you can watch and listen to the man who designed the rifle that defended freedom around the globe.

Latest

Real Avid Bore Max
Real Avid Bore Max

Preview: Real Avid Bore-Max Speed Clean System

Real Avid introduces a new set of bore brushes, jags and jag patches, aimed at simplifying the process of cleaning out barrels with fewer passes needed.

American Arms of the Battle of the Bulge

American G.I.s thwarted Hitler’s last-ditch offensive, even though Hitler threw the best men and weapons that he had available against America's troops in the Ardennes. Here the author looks at the small arms used by our troops to stop the Nazi war machine dead in its tracks.

Heckler & Koch P7: H&K's 'Squeeze-Cocking' Pistol

First designed in 1976, Heckler & Koch's P7 gas-delayed blowback pistol stand out from most all other handguns with its unique squeeze-cocking mechanism.

M1903A4 Development: The U.S. Army’s Search for a Sniper Rifle

Despite the lessons learned during World War I, the U.S. Army lacked a purpose-built sniper rifle throughout the interwar period, even after efforts were made to develop one. The need became more apparent as World War II loomed, leading to the adoption of the M1903A4, with its developmental history explored here.

The Rock Island Arsenal Model of 1903

Although the names “Springfield” and “’03” are virtually synonymous, that gives short shrift to the other
government facility that made the venerable “U.S. Rifle, Caliber .30, Model of 1903”—The Rock Island Arsenal.

NRA Gun of the Week: Hi-Point Firearms C9

On this week’s “Gun of the Week” video preview, American Rifleman staff examines a budget-friendly semi-automatic pistol from Hi-Point Firearms.

Interests



Get the best of American Rifleman delivered to your inbox.