A Birthday Wish for Falls Church's 75th Anniversary

A Birthday Wish for Falls Church’s 75th Anniversary

Dear Falls Church City,

As the candles are lit for your 75th birthday, the flickers cast shadows that tell the tale of your rich but complicated history. It’s a time to celebrate, but also a moment to reflect.

Long before you bore the name of a colonial-era church, your land was cherished by Algonquian-speaking tribes who localized with the Little Falls of the Potomac. Your city representatives recently sought to honor this history but stumbled, misidentifying tribes such as the Piscataway and Nacotchtank, which were not local to Falls Church, along with those like the Doeg that were. This might seem like a minor detail, but it reveals a lack of effort to genuinely understand who lived here before us.

You, dear Falls Church, deserve recognition that reflects your true identity, one that acknowledges the intricate fabric of your history without glossing over the threads of complexity.

Your name still clings to one colonial-era church, but the city’s vibrancy and diversity beg for a title that better represents us all.

The movement to rename you to Little Falls seeks to honor the totality of your story. It’s a name that pays tribute to our indigenous heritage and recognizes the diversity that you’ve become. It symbolizes a shift towards inclusivity and respect for all faiths and secular views.

On this 75th birthday, let’s make a wish for a future that’s inclusive and united. This is not about rewriting history; it’s about embracing a fuller understanding of who we are and who we can be. With each passing year, we grow, we learn, we change. It’s time we reflect that growth in our name.

Happy 75th, Falls Church City. Here’s to opening a new chapter that recognizes our shared past while looking forward to a future where every voice is acknowledged.

With hope and respect,

Ryan Mioduski
Co-Founder and Facilitator
Little Falls Movement