The swampy area south of the River

How Famosa Slough got its name

Hi, Mr. Matt:

I can’t find anyone that knows the derivation of the name for the Formosa Slough in Point Loma.

— Phil Crepeau, via email

Ooh, twice wrong, Phil. First of all, you can find someone who knows the derivation of the name (me). And second of all, it’s Famosa, not Formosa. (Famosa is Spanish for “famous.” “Formosa” is the former name of the island of Taiwan, off the coast of China.) Now that we have those details straightened out, here’s your answer: Famosa Slough is a slice of wetland created when landfill cut it off from the San Diego River construction. It pretty much sat there south of the river, nameless, until someone in the city planning department decided they needed to call it something. They were tired of referring to it as that swampy area south of the river. Because Famosa Boulevard ran adjacent to it, Famosa was the name that stuck. Thanks for this info to Jim Peugh, longtime spokesman for the Friends of Famosa Slough, the intrepid caretakers of this piece of our shrinking wetlands. By the way, none of us know why the boulevard was named Famosa. Maybe one of you Alicelanders can fill us in.

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