The Kansas City Royals were Named for…Cows?


When one pictures the Kansas City Royals logo, images of crowns and the related royalty pop into mind. Sluggerrr has a large crown on his head, the scoreboard in center is a gigantic crown and the Royals have played up the crown aspect to their logo over the past few years. It would be natural to assume that the Royals name is related to the monarchy and, in some way, could be an homage to the Negro Leagues Kansas City Monarchs.

Instead, the Kansas City Royals may have been named for something you are having for dinner. That’s right, the Royals took their name from the bovine world, instead of those people living in palaces. Indeed, that cheeseburger you may consume later today could be a direct descendant of one of the Royals namesakes.

So, how, exactly, did the Royals get their name from the world of cows and farms? Well, it turns out that the winning entrant wanted to name the team the Royals because of Missouri’s livestock economy and the American Royal parade and pageant. What is the American Royal? A festival of rodeos, barbecue, horse shows and livestock exhibitions. Because, you know, wandering around and looking at cows is apparently fun.

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Yet, to look around at the Kansas City Royals, one would not have expected this bovine influence upon their name. Instead, as the city was trying to shift away from being considered a “cow town,” the Royals shifted more to the royalty aspect of their name. However, that did not stop some of the early Royals logo concepts from including cows and livestock (subscription required for link).

As Shakespeare asked in ‘Romeo and Juliet,’ what is in a name? Well, in this case, the Royals name has to deal with the history of Kansas City and of Missouri as a whole. While one may have thought that any historical reference would be to the Monarchs, that just is not the case. The Kansas City Royals, as it turns out, were named for a livestock festival.

Of all the things that I would have guessed the Kansas City Royals were named for, a livestock festival would not have been among them. I guess that statement about learning something every day is true after all.

Next: Mike Sweeney Inducted into Royals Hall of Fame