How popular is the baby name Addie in the United States right now? How popular was it historically? Find out using the graph below! Plus, see baby names similar to Addie and check out all the blog posts that mention the name Addie.
More old-timey name snark! This short article was published in a now-defunct Indiana newspaper in 1880.
The programmes of the school commencements—and our own High School is no exception to the rule—are made silly by “Nannies,” “Libbies,” “Kitties,” “Mamies,” and other pet names. No woman who drops the sensible “y” and spells her name with an “ie” termination will ever get beyond mediocre in any sphere. A pet name is for the household only. How everybody would smile if the male graduates insisted upon the same silly style, and were put down on the programmes as “Johnnies,” “Sammies,” “Jimmies,” etc. The literary nom de plume of a female author indicates to some extent the force of her mind; and we know just as well what to expect from the Lillie Linwoods and Mattie Myrtles as we do from the George Eliots. The former clearly foreshadows gush and twaddle, the latter suggests an idea of strength and common sense. You can scarcely pen a more suggestive satire against the helpfulness and independence of woman than to wrap her up in such terms of daily coddling and childish endearment as the pet names of Jennie, Nannie, Hattie, Minnie, Margie, Nettie, Nellie, Allie, Addie, Lizzie, and a host of others. How it lessens the dignity of any woman to be called by a baby name. For instance, persistently to call the two great chieftains of woman’s advanced status, Lizzie Cady Stanton and Susie B. Anthony, would crush, at one stroke, the revolution they have so much at heart. Under such sweet persiflage it would sink into languid imbecility, and furnish fresh food for laughter.
If I spelled my name “Nancie,” I would definitely use that “mediocre in any sphere” sentence as my Twitter bio.
Source: “Baby Names.” Saturday Evening Mail [Terre Haute] 26 Jun. 1880: 4.
Nope, this isn’t a post about a pink smoothies. “Feminine blend” was a phrase Henry Louis (H. L.) Mencken used in his 1921 book The American Language to describe a female name created by blending two other names together. Here are the feminine blends he lists:
(Addie + Lloyd)
(Addison + Nellie)
(Adrienne + Belle)
(Ardelia + Wilhelmina)
(Elizabeth + Christine)
(Birdie + Pauline)
(Charles + Pauline)
(Leila + Elizabeth)
(Luna + Nettie)
(Marjorie + Henrietta)
(May + Elizabeth)
(Ola + Isabel)
(Olive + Louise)
(Romeo + Juliette)
(Rose + Bella)
If you had to use one of the above in real life, which one would you choose?
Source: H. L. Mencken. The American Language. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1921.
The registrar of Providence, Rhode Island, published a series of documents listing all “of the names of persons deceased, born and married in the city of Providence” during years 1866, 1867 and 1868. The series may have been longer, but these are the only documents I could find online.
I’ve finally finished creating a set of rankings using one of the documents — 1867. But before we get to the rankings, here are some stats:
- 1,547 babies were born in Providence in 1867, going by the number of babies listed in the document itself. According to the document’s introduction, though, the number is 1,625. Not sure what to make of this discrepancy.
- 1,431 of these babies (713 girls and 718 boys) had names that were registered with the government at the time of publication. The other 116 babies got blank spaces. Either their names hadn’t been registered yet, or they hadn’t been named yet, or perhaps they died young and never received a name.
- 254 unique names (141 girl names and 113 boy names) were shared among these 1,431 babies.
And now, on to the names…
A quick look at the top 5 girl names and boy names in Providence in 1867:
|Top Baby Girl Names
||Top Baby Boy Names
Notice how the #1 name, Mary, was bestowed three times as often as the #2 name, Catherine.
- Mary, 138 baby girls
- Catherine, 46
- Ellen, 37
- Margaret, 34
- Sarah, 31
- Annie, 19
- Elizabeth, 16
- Alice, 15
- Florence, 14
- Ann, Emma & Ida, 12 each (3-way tie)
- Minnie, 11
- Harriet & Julia, 9 each (2-way tie)
- Anna, Caroline, Carrie, Jennie, Joanna & Louisa, 8 each (6-way tie)
- Cora & Eliza, 7 each (2-way tie)
- Agnes, Clara, Edith, Rosanna & Theresa, 6 each (5-way tie)
- Bertha, Grace, Hannah, Hattie, Jane, Lillian, Maria, Martha, Nellie & Susan, 5 each (10-way tie)
- Eleanor, Fannie, Gertrude, Helen, Isabella, Lucy & Rosa, 4 each (7-way tie)
- Anne, Bridget, Ella, Emily, Esther, Eva, Lizzie, Mabel, Matilda & Ruth, 3 each (10-way tie)
- Ada, Amelia, Charlotte, Dora, Eleanora, Elvira, Henrietta, Jessie, Josephine, Kate, Louise, Lydia, Maggie & Rosella, 2 each (14-way tie)
- Abby, Addie, Adelaide, Adelia, Almina, Almira, Amanda, Amey, Amy, Anastasia, Angelie, Annis, Antoinette, Augusta, Aurelia, Bethiah, Cecelia, Celia, Clarissa, Clementina, Corielynn, Cornelia, Drusilla, Effie, Emeline, Estella, Ethelin, Fanny, Florentina, Frances, Gelie, Genevieve, Georgiana, Georgianna, Helena, Honora, Irene, Isabel, Issie, Juliann, Julietta, Katie, Laura, Leah, Leonora, Lillie, Lillis, Lily, Lottie, Luella, Margaretta, Margery, Margret, Marietta, Maude, May, Millie, Myra, Nelly, Phebe, Robie, Rosalthe, Rose, Selina, Sophia, Susanna, Susannah, Vienna, Viola, Vira, Virginia & Winifred, 1 each (72-way tie)
- John, 87 baby boys
- William, 75
- James, 64
- Charles, 50
- George, 45
- Thomas, 40
- Joseph, 30
- Walter, 21
- Edward, 16
- Francis & Michael, 14 each (2-way tie)
- Patrick, 13
- Arthur & Robert, 12 each (2-way tie)
- Frank, Frederick & Henry, 11 each (3-way tie)
- Albert, 9
- Daniel & Peter, 8 each (2-way tie)
- David, Eugene, Howard & Samuel, 6 each (4-way tie)
- Alexander, Louis & Stephen, 5 each (3-way tie)
- Harry, Herbert, Hugh & Martin, 4 each (4-way tie)
- Carl, Edgar, Everett, Jeremiah & Willie, 3 each (5-way tie)
- Abraham, Alfred, Clarence, Cornelius, Dennis, Ernest, Ezra, Franklin, Freddie, Jacob, Jesse, Lewis, Luke, Nicholas, Philip, Sylvester, Theodore, Timothy, 2 each (18-way tie)
- Abner, Adam, Adolph, Amos, Andrew, Appleton, Archibald, Ashel, August, Benjamin, Benno, Bernard, Bertram, Burt, Byron, Clifford, Davis, Dexter, Dunlap, Edmund, Edwin, Elmer*, Embert, Forrest, Freddy, Gustav, Herman, Isaac, Jeffrey, Jerome, Josiah, Lucian, Malcolm, Matthew, Maurice, Milton, Nathan, Nehemiah, Nelson, Oren, Oscar, Otto, Owen, Paul, Ralph, Reginald, Richard, Sanford, Seth, Shirley, Sullivan, Terence, Theobald, Victor, Wanton, Warren, Weston, Wheelan, Wilford, 1 each (59-way tie)
*Elmer, who had the middle initial “E.,” was likely named after Civil War casualty Elmer E. Ellsworth.
Twins & Triplets
Twenty-one sets of twins and two sets of triplets were born in Providence in 1867. (All of these names were accounted for above — I just thought it’d be fun to check out the sibsets.)
Abraham & George
Charles & George
Charles & John
Daniel & David
Dunlap & Frank
Eugene & Timothy
George & John
George & William
James & John
John & Martin
Albert & Harriet
Ashel & Ida
George & Grace
James & Mary
Maurice & Ann
Annie & Fannie
Annie & Mary
Ann & Ellen
Jennie & Minnie
Margaret & Martha
(blank) & (blank)
Carl, (blank) & (blank)
James, Alexander & Sarah
I’ll post Providence’s 1866 and 1868 rankings as soon I get them done. Until then, here are two older posts featuring uniquely named Rhode Islanders: Aldaberontophoscophornia (b. 1812) and Idawalley (b. 1842).
A while ago I found a book called “A Collection of Original Acrostics on Ladies’ Christian Names” that was published in Toronto in 1888.
I won’t post any of the poems, which are all pretty cheesy, but author George J. Howson does include an intriguing selection of names. He notes that he wrote acrostics for “all the most popular feminine christian names of the day, and many more that, while not in common use, are known to exist in actual life.”
Here’s the list:
Have any favorites?
Hulda/Huldah is one I like. It’s one of those names that I always see on old New England gravestones but never come across in real life. Wonder when that one will become stylish again.
BTW, has anyone ever seen a good name acrostic? Like, one that’s actually well-written and/or thought-provoking? Because I don’t think I ever have.
Source: A Collection of Original Acrostics on Ladies’ Christian Names by George J. Howson
So far I’ve found exactly one person named Millionaire, one person named Billionaire, and one person named Trillionaire:
- Donisa Millionaire Barrett, female, born in California in 1995
- Billionaire Heungsup Rhee, male, born in Texas in 1989
- Addie Elizabeth Trillionaire Brooks, female, born in North Carolina in 1913
Billionaire Rhee has a blog at which he signs his name “Bill.” On an older webpage (no longer online) he posted the following explanation of his name:
My name is Billionaire Heungsup Rhee. My name ‘Billionaire’ was chosen by my grandfather who lives in Santa Barbara, California while my Korean name ‘Heungsup’ was chosen by a Korean fortune teller in Korea before I was born in the US. The name Heungsup means that whoever the person may be, their fire will never burn out and will keep on burning no matter what happens in their life.
Keeping my eyes peeled for a Quadrillionaire now…
In the meanwhile, here are Ten and Decillian Million of Washington, Chamillionaire of Idaho, Cash Money of Minnesota, and Million, Billion and Trillion of Meghalaya, India.