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

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Popularity of the Baby Name Allen

Number of Babies Named Allen

Born in the U.S. Since 1880

Posts that Mention the Name Allen

Ziegfeld Follies Baby Names – Allyn & Avonne

Ziegfeld Follies, which appeared on Broadway almost every year from 1907 until 1931, was an extravagant production that included music, dance and comedy.

The biggest draw, though, was the bevy of beautiful showgirls.

It became a popular sport to guess which one would break out and become the next big star, like onetime showgirls Barbara Stanwyck, Paulette Goddard, Gypsy Rose Lee, Josephine Baker, and of course, Marilyn Miller.

Several Follies girls went on to enjoy successful careers in entertainment, but only two — Allyn King and Avonne Taylor — inspired baby name debuts.

In fact, Allyn and Avonne are the 4th- and 5th-earliest actor-inspired baby name debuts that I know of (after Francelia, Ormi and Seena).

Allyn

Allyn King in Picture-Play Magazine, July 1923
Allyn King in Picture-Play, Jul. 1923
Allyn King was born in North Carolina in February of 1899. It looks as though she was named after her father, Allen. (Her sister, Phoebe, had been named after their mother.)

Allyn was a Follies girl from 1916 until 1920, and the name Allyn — which was already showing up regularly on the SSA’s list as a boy name — debuted as a girl name in 1918:

  • 1917: unlisted
  • 1918: 7 baby girls named Allyn [debut]
  • 1919: unlisted
  • 1920: unlisted
  • 1921: 5 baby girls named Allyn
  • 1922: unlisted
  • 1923: 7 baby girls named Allyn
  • 1924: 5 baby girls named Allyn
  • 1925: 11 baby girls named Allyn
  • 1926: 5 baby girls named Allyn

(I can’t include SSDI data for unisex names like this one because the SSDI doesn’t code for gender, making it difficult to figure out which people are male and which are female.)

Allyn King continued to appear in Broadway shows during the 1920s, and she was in one silent film in 1923.

But the pressure to achieve the skinny, boyish figure that was fashionable during the ’20s proved too much for her. Extreme dieting nearly killed her in 1927, and after spending almost two years recovering in a sanatorium, she was still so depressed in early 1930 that she jumped out of a 5th story window in New York City. She died two days later.

Avonne

Avonne Taylor in Photoplay, July 1927
Avonne Taylor in Photoplay,
Jul. 1927
Avonne Taylor was born in Ohio, also in February of 1899, to parents Clifford and Diana. Her birth name was Evangeline, but she joined the Follies under the name Avonne. (I’m not sure how she came up with it.)

Avonne was a Follies girl from 1920 to 1922, and the name Avonne debuted on the SSA’s list in 1923:

Year SSA SSDI
1919 x 2 Avonnes
1920 x 1 Avonne
1921 x x
1922 x 4 Avonnes
1923 11 Avonnes [debut] 13 Avonnes
1924 17 Avonnes 11 Avonnes
1925 12 Avonnes 9 Avonnes
1926 6 Avonnes 2 Avonnes
1927 12 Avonnes 6 Avonnes
1928 9 Avonnes 3 Avonnes

(For the SSDI numbers, I only counted people who had Avonne as a first name, not as a middle.)

Avonne Taylor went on to appear in a couple of films — one in 1927, the other in 1931 — and then left the entertainment industry altogether, it seems. She died in 1992 at the age of 93.

*

Which name do you like more, Allyn or Avonne?

Sources:


Names Popular During the Victorian Era

Tuesday’s post about the Victorian-style Tylney Hall Hotel reminded me of a list of Victorian-era names that I’ve had bookmarked forever.

The list was created by amateur genealogist G. M. Atwater as a resource for writers. It contains names and name combinations that were commonly seen in the U.S. from the 1840s to the 1890s. Below is the full list (with a few minor changes).

Victorian Era Female Names Victorian Era Male Names
  • Abigale / Abby
  • Ada
  • Adella
  • Agnes
  • Allie
  • Almira / Almyra
  • Alva
  • America
  • Amelia
  • Ann / Annie
  • Arrah
  • Beatrice
  • Bernice
  • Charity
  • Charlotte
  • Chastity
  • Claire
  • Constance
  • Cynthia
  • Dorothy / Dot
  • Edith
  • Edna
  • Edwina
  • Ella
  • Eleanor
  • Ellie
  • Elizabeth / Eliza / Liza / Lizzy / Bess / Bessie / Beth / Betsy
  • Elvira
  • Emma
  • Esther
  • Ethel
  • Eudora
  • Eva
  • Fidelia
  • Frances / Fanny
  • Flora
  • Florence
  • Geneve
  • Genevieve
  • Georgia
  • Gertrude / Gertie
  • Gladys
  • Grace
  • Hannah
  • Hattie
  • Helen
  • Helene
  • Henrietta / Hettie / Ettie
  • Hester
  • Hope
  • Hortence
  • Isabell / Isabella
  • Jane
  • Jennie
  • Jessamine
  • Josephine
  • Judith
  • Julia
  • Juliet
  • Katherine / Kate
  • Laura
  • Leah
  • Lenora
  • Letitia
  • Lila
  • Lilly
  • Lorena
  • Lorraine
  • Lottie
  • Louise / Louisa
  • Lucy
  • Lulu
  • Lydia
  • Mahulda
  • Margaret / Peggie
  • Mary / Molly / Polly
  • Mary Elizabeth
  • Mary Frances
  • Martha
  • Matilda / Mattie
  • Maude
  • Maxine / Maxie
  • Mercy
  • Mildred
  • Minerva
  • Missouri
  • Myrtle
  • Nancy
  • Natalie
  • Nellie / Nelly
  • Nettie
  • Nora
  • Orpha
  • Patsy
  • Parthena
  • Permelia
  • Phoebe
  • Philomena
  • Preshea
  • Rachel
  • Rebecca / Becky
  • Rhoda / Rhody
  • Rowena
  • Rufina
  • Ruth
  • Samantha
  • Sally
  • Sarah
  • Sarah Ann
  • Sarah Elizabeth
  • Savannah
  • Selina
  • Sophronia
  • Stella
  • Theodosia / Theda
  • Vertiline / Verd
  • Victoria
  • Virginia / Ginny
  • Vivian
  • Winnifred / Winnie
  • Zona
  • Zylphia
  • Aaron
  • Abraham / Abe
  • Alan / Allen
  • Albert
  • Alexander
  • Alonzo
  • Ambrose
  • Amon
  • Amos
  • Andrew / Drew / Andy
  • Aquilla
  • Archibald / Archie
  • Arnold
  • Asa
  • August / Augustus / Gus
  • Barnabas / Barney
  • Bartholomew / Bart
  • Benjamin
  • Bennet
  • Benedict
  • Bernard
  • Bertram / Bert
  • Buford
  • Byron
  • Calvin
  • Cephas
  • Charles / Charley / Charlie
  • Christopher
  • Christopher Columbus
  • Clarence
  • Clement / Clem
  • Clinton / Clint
  • Cole
  • Columbus / Lom / Lum
  • Commodore Perry
  • Daniel / Dan
  • David
  • Edmund
  • Edward / Ned
  • Edwin
  • Eldon
  • Eli
  • Elijah
  • Elisha
  • Emmett
  • Enoch
  • Ezekiel / Zeke
  • Ezra
  • Francis / Frank
  • Franklin
  • Frederick / Fred
  • Gabriel / Gabe
  • Garrett
  • George
  • George Washington
  • Gideon
  • Gilbert / Gil
  • Granville
  • Harland
  • Harrison
  • Harold / Harry
  • Harvey
  • Henry / Hank
  • Hiram
  • Horace
  • Horatio
  • Hugh
  • Isaiah
  • Israel
  • Isaac / Ike
  • Isaac Newton
  • Jacob / Jake
  • James / Jim
  • Jasper
  • Jefferson / Jeff
  • Jedediah / Jed
  • Jeptha
  • Jesse
  • Joel
  • John / Jack
  • John Paul
  • John Wesley
  • Jonathan
  • Joseph / Josephus
  • Josiah
  • Joshua
  • Julian
  • Julius
  • Lafayette / Lafe
  • Lawrence / Larry
  • Leander
  • Les / Lester / Leslie
  • Lewis / Lew / Louis
  • Levi
  • Lucas
  • Lucian
  • Lucius
  • Luke
  • Luther
  • Louis
  • Levi
  • Lucas
  • Lucian
  • Lucius
  • Luke
  • Luther
  • Matthew
  • Marcellus
  • Mark
  • Martin
  • Martin Luther
  • Masheck
  • Maurice
  • Maxwell
  • Merrill
  • Meriwether
  • Meriwether Lewis
  • Michael / Mike
  • Micajah / Cage
  • Mordecai
  • Morgan
  • Morris
  • Nathaniel / Nathan / Nate / Nat
  • Newton / Newt
  • Nicholas / Nick
  • Nimrod
  • Ninian
  • Obediah
  • Octavius
  • Ora / Oral
  • Orville
  • Oscar
  • Owen
  • Paul
  • Patrick / Pat
  • Patrick Henry
  • Paul
  • Perry
  • Peter
  • Pleasant
  • Ralph
  • Raymond
  • Reuben
  • Robert / Bob
  • Robert Lee
  • Richard / Rich / Dick
  • Roderick
  • Rudolph
  • Rufus
  • Samuel
  • Sam Houston
  • Seth
  • Silas
  • Simon
  • Simeon
  • Stanley / Stan
  • Stephen
  • Thaddeus
  • Thomas / Tom
  • Thomas Jefferson
  • Theodore / Ted
  • Timothy / Tim
  • Ulysses
  • Uriah
  • Victor
  • Walter
  • Warren
  • Washington
  • Wilfred
  • William / Will / Bill / Billy
  • Willie
  • Zachariah
  • Zebulon
  • Zedock

Which female name and male name do you like best?

Source: Victorian Era Names, A Writer’s Guide

Baby Name Story – Frank, Named for Sauerkraut

Edward Allen Frank Lashley was born in Wisconsin in August, 2002. His first two given names are family names–Edward in honor of his maternal grandfather, and Allen for his father.

Frank isn’t a family name, though. The baby’s mom, Brenda Lashley, won the Kraut Eating Contest at the 2002 Kraut Fest in Franksville, Wisconsin, when she was 7 months pregnant. So she and her husband “figured why not add Frank to make it Edward Allen Frank, after the sauerkraut brand.”

That brand would be Frank’s Quality Kraut, originally made by The Frank Pure Food Company, after which Franksville was named in the early 1900s.

Sources: Racine woman gains fame for naming son after sauerkraut, News of the Weird, Baby Named for Kraut Firm (The Capital Times, 22 August 2002)

Baby Names Inspired by Clubs, Charities, Organizations

What clubs are you a member of? What charities do you support? What organizations have helped you (or someone you love) become a better person? Perhaps the story behind one of these groups could inspire a meaningful baby name.

Organization Founder(s)
Alcoholics Anonymous William Wilson
Robert Smith
American Red Cross Clara Booth
ASPCA Henry Bergh
Heifer International Dan West
Jane Addams Hull House Assoc. Jane Addams
Ellen Starr
Kiwanis Joseph Prance
Allen Browne
Knights of Columbus Michael McGivney
Lions Clubs International Melvin Jones
National Audubon Society George Grinnell
Outward Bound Kurt Hahn
Lawrence Holt
Peace Games Francelia Butler
RAINN Scott Berkowitz
Rotary Club Paul Harris
WWF Julian Huxley
Max Nicholson

The founder of the group would be the best place to start (if the group does indeed have a founder). But don’t stop there. Who were important early members of the group? Who helped popularize or expand the group? Who personally introduced you to the group and/or encouraged you to get involved?

What Do You Think About Lachlan?

Here’s a question from Bess about the name Lachlan:

I found the name Lachlan in a list of popular names in Australia. I live in the southeastern US. I like the name, but some people have had negative reactions to it. My husband seems to think it is a name you give a kid if you are trying to make them sound cool. What do you think? We are thinking of the middle name Allen.

I like the name Lachlan, but I can understand what your husband is saying.

Would the baby have any extra connection to the name? For instance, Scottish (or Norwegian) heritage? Relatives or ancestors with the name? Do you or your husband have any favorite book or movie characters named Lachlan, or some link to Australia?

Without some sort of personal significance, the name is simply a name off a list…and likely is being chosen because it sounds cool. There’s nothing wrong with that, of course. But a meaningful association is the very thing that would take the name from “cool-sounding” to something deeper.

(Ironically, I’ve been getting quite a few e-mails about the name Lachlan lately. This leads me to believe that people are becoming quite interested in the name…and will perhaps start using it more often. So, while Lachlan is unique right now, in the coming years it may become trendy, and, hence, not as cool-sounding.)

What other reasons are people giving for disliking the name? (Same as your husband? Or, are they having trouble with the pronunciation, maybe?)

Beyond that…I do like Allen as a middle. I think “Lachlan Allen” is a really nice-sounding combination.

What does everyone else think about Lachlan?

First Babies (and First Baby Names) of 2008

Here are some New Year’s babies from around the nation:

  • Dothan, AL: Adia
  • Mobile, AL: Bryce Anthony
  • Anchorage, AK: Alexander (whose mom, Donna, was the first baby born in Gary, IN in 1974)
  • Fort Wainwright, AK: Gabriel Louis
  • Mohave County, AZ: Joel Oswaldo
  • Yuma County, AZ: Yesenia
  • Bay Area, CA: Tania Guadalupe
  • Butte County, CA: Grace Claire
  • Fresno, CA: Preston Moses
  • Hanford, CA: Joslyn Marie
  • High Desert area, CA: Amzye Jeremiah
  • Inland Valley, CA: Mya Renee
  • Lodi, CA: Angel (boy)
  • Monterey County, CA: Vincent Jacob
  • Napa County, CA: Oscar
  • Sacramento, CA: Dillon
  • San Luis Obispo County, CA: Eliel (boy)
  • San Mateo County, CA: Stella Kristina
  • Santa Barbara County, CA: Everardo
  • Santa Clara County, CA: Hannah Yi
  • Santa Clarita Valley, CA: Lily
  • Santa Cruz County, CA: Annabelle Mae
  • Solano County, CA: Christopher Lee
  • Stanislaus County, CA: Kate Rebekah
  • Tulare County, CA: Isaiah Joe
  • Denver metro-area, CO: Aiden Lavon
  • Greeley, CO: Ziclaly Alonso (girl)
  • Loveland, CO: Abigail Joy
  • Southern CO: Savanna Marie
  • Stamford, CT: Nolan Matthew
  • Bay County, FL: Semaj G’ntae (boy)
  • Central FL: Avery Thomas
  • Charlotte County, FL: Amber Lynn
  • Highlands County, FL: Anabella Marie (born at 12 a.m.)
  • Jackson County, FL: Jackson Lee
  • Northwest FL: Jayden Ryder
  • Palm Beach County, FL: Hugo
  • Tallahassee, FL: JaKenya (girl)
  • Tampa, FL: Michael Daniel
  • Atlanta, GA: Austin Devon
  • Effingham County, GA: Marieli Ebelysse
  • Floyd County, GA: Jonathan William
  • Hall County, GA: Bonnie Christine
  • Macon, GA: Jacob Wilbur
  • Whitfield County, GA: Henry Javier
  • Boise, ID: Collin Patrick
  • Appanoose County, IA: Olivia
  • Cedar Rapids area, IA: Chelsey Raylynn
  • Quad Cities area, IA/IL: Angel Marie
  • Chicago area, IL: Klaudia Wiktoria
  • Madison County, IN: Mickenzie Brooke
  • Terre Haute, IN: Miley Marie
  • Lawrence, KS: Kiowa Joseph
  • Topeka, KS: Julia Elizabeth
  • Wichita, KS: David Zachariah
  • Shreveport-Bossier City area, LA: Gianna
  • Maine: Averie (girl)
  • Nanticoke Memorial Hospital, MD: Heivi (boy)
  • Massachusetts: Maisen (boy)
  • Berkshire County, MA: Jayden Emiliano
  • Boston, MA: Jackson Miller
  • Cape Cod, MA: Caspar
  • Merrimack Valley, MA: Jack Shackett
  • North Adams, MA: Natalie
  • Western MA: Meiah (girl)
  • Worcester, MA: MacKenzie
  • Cadillac, MI: Aaden Allen
  • Kent County, MI: Blake Alan
  • Midland County, MI: Meghan Marie
  • Niles, MI: Merrick William
  • Hattiesburg, MS: Kym’Mari (girl)
  • Meridian, MS: A’Mirikah Brennae (girl)
  • Central MN: Morgan Elizabeth
  • Olmsted County, MN: Tegan James
  • Twins Cities area, MN: Carter Strong
  • Boone County, MO: Bella Grace
  • Jefferson City, MO: Eden (girl)
  • Joplin, MO: Brooklyn (girl)
  • Springfield, MO: Lakyn Addlai (girl)
  • Helena, MT: Angel Love Jacqueline
  • Lincoln, NE: Emily Elizabeth
  • Churchill County, NV: James Peter
  • New Hampshire: Eleanor Louise
  • New Jersey: Grace
  • Burlington County, NJ: Katelyn Michelle
  • Cumberland County, NJ: Sa’Niyah Renee
  • Gloucester County, NJ: Quinton (boy)
  • Hudson County, NJ: Kelsea Dorothy Elizabeth (born 8 minutes past midnight and weighed 8 pounds, 8 ounces)
  • Monmouth County, NJ: Alexzander Lee
  • Northern NJ: David Stuart
  • Ocean County, NJ: Connor Christian
  • Salem County, NJ: Jeremiah Chase
  • Trenton, NJ: Marvin
  • Las Cruces, NM: Brenda Vanessa
  • Albany region, NY: Avery William
  • Bronx, NY: Ashley Nicole
  • New York City, NY: tie between Isabella Sofia and Kamiyah Alina
  • Erie County, NY: Hunter Remington
  • Long Island, NY: Jes (girl)
  • Monroe County, NY: Silver Ann
  • Rockland County, NY: Mendell Zachary
  • Beaufort County Hospital, NC: Emonie (girl)
  • Catawba County, NC: Christian Raeshon
  • Charlotte, NC: Maurice
  • Pitt County Memorial Hospital, NC: Zai-Arreyon (boy)
  • Rowan County, NC: Daniela
  • Sandhills area, NC/SC: Billy
  • Fargo-Moorhead area, ND/MN: Eli Vinh (boy; named after Eli Manning after mom refused to name him after Randy Moss)
  • Alliance, OH: Raith Alexander
  • Central OH: tie between Taven James and Olivia Mae
  • Coshocton County, OH: Caydan Mikel
  • Dayton, OH: Adreia
  • Holmes County, OH: Royce Nathaniel
  • Van Wert County, OH: Kenna Leigh (whose dad, Mike, was the first baby born there in 1983)
  • Tulsa, OK: Lathan Lee
  • Coos County, OR: Jenna Nichole
  • Marion and Polk Counties, OR: David Ivan
  • Blair County, PA: Noah
  • Crawford County, PA: Easton Lane
  • Gettysburg Hospital, PA: Faith Lynn (sister of Kaden Skye, Gettysburg Hospital’s first baby of 2007)
  • Philadelphia region, PA: Grace
  • Pittsburgh, PA: Gabriella Grace
  • Somerset County, PA: Rebecca
  • Towanda, PA: Gracelyn
  • Rhode Island: Marisol
  • Greenville County, SC: Hayden (boy)
  • Black Hills, SD: Abigayle Lorraine
  • Rapid City, SD: Fiona Jayde
  • Blount County, TN: Curtis Joe
  • Middle TN: William DeWayne
  • Abilene, TX: Skye Renee
  • Allen, TX: Anant
  • Angelina County, TX: DaKorian Windell (boy)
  • Austin, TX: Rylan Austin (boy)
  • Bell County, TX: Savannah Cheyenne
  • Dallas, TX: Maya
  • El Paso, TX: Abigail Leia
  • Fort Worth, TX: Lilly
  • Kerrville, TX: Genavieve Jaylene
  • Houston, TX: Destiny
  • Sweetwater, TX: Kalyn (girl)
  • Utah: Adrian Alexander
  • Augusta County, VA: Vincent Immanuel
  • Central VA: Rhea Noelle
  • Prince William County, VA: Anthony Paul
  • Smyth County, VA: Cheyenne Elizabeth
  • Southwest VA: Alafair Winter (girl)
  • Washington, D.C. area: Stella Inez
  • Clark County, WA: Kirsi Ryan (girl)
  • Kittitas County, WA: Elke
  • Pierce County, WA: Evelyn Rose
  • Seattle area, WA: Noah
  • Snohomish County, WA: Mademou Drammeh (girl)
  • Green Bay, WI: Preston Johnathan
  • Lafayette County, WI: Spencer Elmer
  • Marshfield, WI: Clayton James

Do you know the name of the first baby born in your region in 2008? Please leave a comment if you do!

P.S. – Here’s my list from 2007.

Baby Name Safe List – Amelia, Calvin, Grace, Preston, Rebecca, Wesley

Not sure what to name your baby?

Maybe you should go with a classic. The following names have been popular in the U.S. since at least 1880 (when data on baby names was first collected). None of the male names have ever been out of the top 400, and none of the female names have ever been out of the top 500.

So, if you’re stumped, simply close your eyes and point. Just remember to veer to the left if you’re having a boy, to the right if you’re having a girl…

Aaron
Albert
Alex
Alexander
Allen
Andrew
Andy
Anthony
Antonio
Arthur
Benjamin
Calvin
Charles
Christopher
Clayton
Curtis
Daniel
David
Dennis
Donald
Edgar
Edward
Edwin
Felix
Frank
George
Grant
Henry
Isaac
Jack
Jacob
James
Jay
Jerry
Jesse
Joe
Joel
John
Jose
Joseph
Juan
Julian
Kenneth
Louis
Manuel
Marcus
Mark
Martin
Marvin
Matthew
Michael
Nathan
Nathaniel
Nicholas
Oscar
Patrick
Paul
Peter
Philip
Phillip
Preston
Raymond
Richard
Robert
Ruben
Samuel
Stephen
Theodore
Thomas
Timothy
Tony
Victor
Vincent
Walter
Wesley
William
Alice
Amanda
Amelia
Amy
Anna
Anne
Annie
Caroline
Catherine
Cecilia
Charlotte
Christina
Christine
Claudia
Cynthia
Elizabeth
Emily
Emma
Esther
Eva
Evelyn
Grace
Helen
Jane
Josephine
Julia
Katherine
Kathleen
Kathryn
Katie
Laura
Leah
Lillian
Linda
Lydia
Margaret
Maria
Mary
Miriam
Molly
Nancy
Naomi
Nina
Priscilla
Rachel
Rebecca
Rose
Rosa
Ruby
Ruth
Sara
Sarah
Veronica

Honorable Mentions: Douglas, Eddie, Ivan, Lawrence, Mitchell and Russell were each out of the top 400 only once, and Nora was out of the top 500 only once.