How popular is the baby name Ailsa in the United States right now? How popular was it historically? Find out using the graph below! Plus, see baby names similar to Ailsa and check out all the blog posts that mention the name Ailsa.

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Popularity of the Baby Name Ailsa

Number of Babies Named Ailsa

Born in the U.S. Since 1880

Posts that Mention the Name Ailsa

Top Baby Names in Nova Scotia, 1914

Speaking of popular baby names Nova Scotia…did you know that the province’s Open Data site includes birth registration records from the mid-1800s and from the early 1900s? I isolated the records from 1914 — the most recent year in the data — and came up with baby name rankings for about a century ago:

Top Girl Names, 1914
1. Mary (close to 700 girls)
2. Margaret
3. Annie
4. Marie
5. Helen
6. Dorothy
7. Florence
8. Elizabeth
9. Catherine (over 100 girls)
10. Alice

Top Boy Names, 1914
1. John (close to 600 boys)
2. Joseph
3. James
4. William
5. George
6. Charles
7. Robert
8. Arthur
9. Donald
10. Edward (over 100 boys)

The rankings represent about about 6,700 baby girls and about 6,800 baby boys born in Nova Scotia in 1914. I’m not sure how many babies were born that year overall, but it looks like the province’s total population in 1914 was roughly 500,000 people.

Hundreds of the names were used just once. Here are some examples:

Unique Girl names Unique Boy names
Adalta, Adayala, Ailsa, Amilene, Anarina, Aniela, Attavilla, Birdina, Buema, Burance, Caletta, Cattine, Celesta, Claviettee, Deltina, Elta, Erdina, Ethelda, Eudavilla, Evhausine, Fauleen, Genneffa, Gennesta, Heuldia, Hughenia, Iselda, Ivenho, Lanza, Lebina, Lelerta, Loa, Lougreta, Manattie, Meloa, Milnina, Minira, Namoia, Naza, Neitha, Neruda, Olava, Oressa, Prenetta, Ramza, Ruzena, Sophique, Stanislawa, Taudulta, Udorah, Velena, Vola, Vonia, Waldtraut, Willina, Yuddis Albenie, Alpine, Alywin, Alyre, Armenious, Bayzil, Bernthorne, Briercliffe, Carefield, Cicero, Colomba, Craigen, Desire, DeWilton, Docithee, Edly, Enzile, Ethelberth, Ewart, Exivir, Fernwood, Firth, Florincon, Glidden, Gureen, Haliberton, Haslam, Hibberts, Irad, Kertland, Kinsman, Kitchener, Langille, Lemerchan, Lockie, Lubins, Meurland, Murl, Neddy, Nevaus, Niron, Odillon, Olding, Phine, Rexfrid, Roseville, Saber, Sifroi, Sprat, Stannage, Venanties, Waitstill, Wardlo, Wentworth, Wibbert

I also spotted one boy with the first and middle names “Earl Gray” (delicious!) and another with the first and middle names “Kermit Roosevelt” (the name of one of Theodore Roosevelt’s six children).

Sources: Open Data Nova Scotia (specifically, Birth Registrations 1864-1877, 1908-1914), Nova Scotia – Population urban and rural, by province and territory (via Wayback)

Rare Female Names in Glasgow, 1914

In July, Eleanor of British Baby Names shared a 100-year-old newspaper article called What’s in a Name?

It said that a “correspondent of leisure” had kept track of all the female names that appeared in the Marriages and Deaths column of the Glasgow Herald during the second half of 1913. He spotted a total of 208 different names (shared among 3,500 women) during that time. The two most popular? Margaret and Mary. The next-most-popular were Elizabeth, Agnes, Janet and Isabella. The least popular were the 73 that appeared only once, including:


If this anonymous name-tracking correspondent were alive today, he would definitely be a baby name blogger. :)

Which of the above names do you like best?

Source: “What’s in a Name?” Western Daily Press 10 Jan. 1914: 7.

How Do You Like Your Name, Ailsa?

“I like being the only Ailsa I know,” says Ailsa, a 59-year-old from Swansea in South Wales.

Ailsa also likes the sound of her name, and appreciates its Scottish roots. (The name is a reference to Ailsa Craig, an island off the west coast of Scotland.)

How common is the baby name Ailsa?

In the U.S., it’s rare:

  • 2012: 14 baby girls named Ailsa
  • 2011: 12 baby girls named Ailsa
  • 2010: 19 baby girls named Ailsa
  • 2009: 12 baby girls named Ailsa
  • 2008: 12 baby girls named Ailsa
  • 2007: 13 baby girls named Ailsa

Overseas it’s relatively more common, though the raw number of baby Ailsas born every year isn’t much higher:

  • 2010: 28 baby girls named Ailsa in England & Wales
  • 2009: 21 baby girls named Ailsa in England & Wales
  • 2008: 20 baby girls named Ailsa in England & Wales
  • 2007: 26 baby girls named Ailsa in England & Wales

Is there anything Ailsa from Swansea doesn’t like about her name?

“I have spent a lifetime spelling or pronouncing it for people.”

How did Ailsa get her name?

My mother (Welsh) heard it in the 1930s as she was in school with an Ailsa and she always liked it.

Would she recommend that the name Ailsa be given to babies nowadays?

Yes, I would recommend Ailsa to any prospective mother. It is ageless and would suit a baby or an old lady.

Thanks, Ailsa!

[Would you like to tell me about your name?]