JUSTIN SELLERS / THE NATCHEZ DEMOCRAT — The sign that is named after Lynda Lee Mead Shea incorrectly spells the name of the Natchez native and Miss America 1960.
JUSTIN SELLERS / THE NATCHEZ DEMOCRAT — The sign that is named after Lynda Lee Mead Shea incorrectly spells the name of the Natchez native and Miss America 1960.

MDOT discovers spelling mistakes on flyover signage

Published 12:12am Wednesday, August 28, 2013

NATCHEZ — A $20 million project doesn’t always include a spellcheck.

A miscommunication between the contractor of the recently opened flyover bridge and the Mississippi Department of Transportation resulted in misspellings of a few signs at the intersection of D’Evereux, Seargent S. Prentiss and Lynda Lee drives.

JUSTIN SELLERS | THE NATCHEZ DEMOCRAT —  Two other signs, above, spell D’Evereux Drive two different ways.
JUSTIN SELLERS | THE NATCHEZ DEMOCRAT — Two other signs, above, spell D’Evereux Drive two different ways.

MDOT resident engineer and project manager Steve Smith said MDOT employees noticed when the signs were posted that the first name of Natchez native and Miss America 1960 Lynda Lee Mead Shea was misspelled. The sign spells Lynda with a “i” in place of the “y.”

D’Evereux Drive, a commonly misspelled Natchez street name, is spelled correctly on large signs, but is spelled “Devereux” on small signs posted on traffic light poles.

Historic Natchez Foundation Executive Director Mimi Miller said the correct spelling of the name for which a few streets and properties are named is D’Evereux.

“It just happens,” Miller said of the misspelling. “At some point in the past, the spelling of the name got corrupted.”

And the City of Natchez may be to blame for a typo long ago.

“The City put street signs out, and it got misspelled ‘D’Evereaux,’” Miller said.

The name is also commonly mispronounced, Miller said. Many people pronounce the last syllable of the word to sound like the word row, Miller said. But it is actually, she said, supposed to be pronounced “roo,” as in kangaroo.

MDOT received a few calls about the misspellings and is currently in the process of getting new signs made, Smith said.

MDOT is also replacing the sign for West Frontage Road, which was supposed to read “W. Front. Road” but says “West Front Road” now, Smith said.

“It won’t happen overnight, but we will have new signs by the end of the project (in late October or November),” he said.