“Everly” is hot…”Beverly” is not. It’s a one-letter difference between fashionable and fusty.
If you’re sensitive to style, you’ll prefer Everly. It fits with today’s trends far better than Beverly does.
But if you’re someone who isn’t concerned about style, or prefers to go against style, then you may not automatically go for Everly. In fact, you may be more attracted to Beverly because it’s the choice that most modern parents would avoid.
If you’ve ever thought about intentionally giving your baby a dated name (like Debbie, Grover, Marcia, or Vernon) for the sake of uniqueness within his/her peer group — if you have no problem sacrificing style for distinctiveness — then this list is for you.
Years ago, the concept of “contrarian” baby names came up in the comments of a post about Lois. Ever since then, creating a collection of uncool/contrarian baby names has been on my to-do list.
Finally, last month, I experimented with various formulas for pulling unstylish baby names out of the SSA dataset. Keeping the great-grandparent rule in mind, I aimed for names that would have been fashionable among the grandparents of today’s babies. The names below are the best results I got.
The baby name Vint debuted in the baby name data in 1958:
1963: 5 baby boys named Vint
1961: 9 baby boys named Vint
1960: 15 baby boys named Vint
1959: 35 baby boys named Vint
1958: 21 baby boys named Vint [debut]
The influence? Vint Bonner, the main character of the TV Western The Restless Gun (1957-1959).
Vint was a “freelance cowpoke” who traveled alone through the post-Civil War West. The character was played by John Payne, who had starred in Miracle on 34th Street a decade earlier. Payne say of the character: “If there’s such a thing as a next-door neighbor in a Western that’s Vint Bonner.”
The series was based on a radio show (The Six Shooter, 1953-1954) in which the main character was named Britt Ponset. For TV, the character’s personality was altered slightly and his name was changed from “Britt” to “Vint” (…perhaps to make it sound more like Clint?).
Do you like the name Vint?
Marill, Alvin H. Television Westerns: Six Decades of Sagebrush Sheriffs, Scalawags, and Sidewinders.. Lanham, MD: Scarecrow Press, 2011.
“TV Goes Wild Over Westerns.” LIFE 28 Oct. 1957: 99-106.
Please note that I did include names in the gray area between one syllable and two syllables. The deciding factor on these particular names will be your own interpretation/accent, so be sure to test the names out loud before making any final decisions. (“Hayle,” for instance — would you say it like Hale, or like Hailey? Or “Rise” — is it rize, or ree-sah?)