Just found my solution/correction.  I forgot that I put the following code in App.xaml.cs, which was overriding whatever language I selected in the Windows Phone 8.1 emulator.

            // this sets up the Langague override for testing different languages
            Windows.Globalization.ApplicationLanguages.PrimaryLanguageOverride = "en-US";
            //Windows.Globalization.ApplicationLanguages.PrimaryLanguageOverride = "es-ES";