On the subject of Vincent Van Gogh, they offer the following:
But what is the real pronunciation of Van Gogh? Native English speakers can be heard saying Van GOFF (-v as in vet, -a as in pan, -g as in get, -f as in fit) or van GOH (-oh as in no).The "How To Say..." page of the BBC's Magazine Monitor has additional offerings on such subjects as Morgan Tsvangirai, Dmitry Medvedev, David Bowie, and many others.
In fact, most Dutch people pronounce his surname along the lines of Vun KHOKH (-v as in vet, -u as in bun, -kh as in Scottish loch) or Fun KHOKH (-f as in fit, -u as in bun, -kh as in Scottish loch)...
At the Pronunciation Unit, we don't expect non-native Dutch speakers to pronounce his name with a perfect Dutch accent. Instead, we recommend the established Anglicisation Van GOKH (-v as in vet, -g as in get, -kh as in Scottish loch) which is codified in numerous British English pronunciation dictionaries.
This recommendation represents a compromise between the aforementioned English pronunciations and the Dutch pronunciations.
What is missing from the site are clickable audio files that allow one to hear the word rather than read the text. That feature was incorporated into the surprisingly useful Miss Pronouncer.com website, which has assembled audio files of the names of people and places in Wisconsin. An LATimes article explained the need for this site and the meticulous work that went into its creation - not just a presumption of what the correct pronunciation should be, but actual travel to places, interviews with local residents, and asking some subjects to pronounce their own names. Trying to intuit the proper pronunciation can lead one astray:
The town of Genoa, Wis.? Forget the Italian version. It's "gen-NO-wah."You can click these links to hear the pronunciation of Lac Courte Oreilles, Lake Butte des Morts, Madison mayor Dave Cieslewicz, or Vikings quarterback Brett Favre. There are many more at the Miss Pronouncer site.
Berlin, Wis.? Make sure to draw out the first syllable: "BERRR-lin."
I should also add that when I lived in Kentucky and we could identify out-of-state people because they would mispronounce town names like Versailles (in Kentucky it's ver-SALES) and Athens (say AY-thens). More states should have web-based pronunciation guides. If you know of any, please offer them in the comment section.
Addendum: Bryan Klimt found one for Texas locales.