Des Moines: Where People Speak American

Des Moines: Where People Speak American

What’s an American accent? Think Walter Cronkite. Even though the world-famous newscaster was born in Missouri, Cronkite sounded like he was from nearby Des Moines, the place linguistics believe is the center of a small area where people speak English free of accents, stresses and localisms.

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Talk show host Johnny Carson, CNN Headline News personality Chuck Roberts and a vast majority of the nation’s telemarketers hail from a small portion of the Midwest where residents speak a neutral form of American English that cannot be identified with a region. The area stretches east from Peoria to Omaha, skims the north of

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