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

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Popularity of the Baby Name Destry


Posts that Mention the Name Destry

Audie Murphy’s 11 Siblings

audie murphy, 1945, rifle
Audie Murphy and sister Nadine
© 1945 LIFE

Did you know that Audie Murphy — the soldier-turned-actor mentioned in yesterday’s post on Destry — was one of a dozen siblings? All 12 kids were born in Texas. Here are their first and middle names:

  1. Elizabeth Corine, b. 1910
  2. Charles Emmett, b. 1912
  3. Vernon C., b. 1916
  4. Ariel June, b. 1919
  5. Virginia Oneta, b. 1918
  6. J.W. (stillborn), b. 1920
  7. Audie Leon, b. 1925
  8. Richard Houston, b. 1926
  9. Eugene Porter, b. 1928
  10. Reta Fay, b. 1931 – later known as Verda Nadine (see pic)
  11. Willa Beatrice, b. 1933
  12. Joe Preston, b. 1935

Which of these combinations do you like best?

Source: Military Monday – Audie Leon Murphy – A Scrapbook of Me
Image: from page 94 of the July 16, 1945, issue of LIFE

The Baby Name Destry

destry, movie, 1954, 1955, audie, The 1930 book Destry Rides Again by Max Brand* was set in Texas circa 1900. It followed main character Harrison Destry as he sought revenge against the jurors who wrongfully convicted him of robbery.

The book was adapted to film three times (1932, 1939, and 1954), made into a musical (1959), and turned into a short-lived television series (1964, February to May).

Both the third film and the TV show — neither of which were much like the original novel — had an impact on American baby names. Check out the usage of Destry during the ’50s and ’60s:

  • 1967: 34 baby boys named Destry
  • 1966: 43 baby boys named Destry
  • 1965: 50 baby boys and 7 baby girls named Destry
  • 1964: 149 baby boys and 5 baby girls named Destry [rank: 636th]
  • 1963: unlisted
  • 1962: unlisted
  • 1961: unlisted
  • 1960: unlisted
  • 1959: unlisted
  • 1958: 5 baby boys named Destry
  • 1957: 6 baby boys named Destry
  • 1956: 10 baby boys named Destry
  • 1955: 8 baby boys named Destry [debut]
  • 1954: unlisted
  • 1953: unlisted

The third movie, starring Audie Murphy — who was one of the most decorated American combat soldiers of WWII before becoming an actor — is what put Destry on the map. (The name Audie was also on the rise during the early ’50s. Peak usage was in 1956.)

The TV show gave Destry such a big boost in 1964 that it reached the top 1,000 rather impressively that year. (The name Stormy also saw an uptick in usage, thanks to the Destry episode “Stormy Is a Lady,” which featured a young girl name Stormy.)

Some sources suggest the surname Destry is related to the medieval English word destrier, which referred to a war horse, but I haven’t been able to confirm this.

What do you think of the name Destry?

*Max’s real name: Frederick Schiller Faust.

Source: Destry Rides Again (novel) – Wikipedia

Popular Baby Names in Sonoma County, CA, 2015

Sonoma_CountyAccording to Sonoma County’s data site SoCo Data, the most popular baby names in 2015 were Ava and Olivia (tie) and Mateo and Daniel (tie).

Here are the county’s top 5 girl names and top 5 boy names of 2015:

Girl Names Boy Names
1. Ava and Olivia (tie), 28 baby girls
2. Camila, 25
3. Isabella, Mia and Emma (3-way tie), 23
4. Charlotte and Sophia (tie), 21
5. Alexa, 20
1. Mateo and Daniel (tie), 28 baby boys
2. Jackson, 27
3. Sebastian, 25
4. Benjamin, 24
5. Julian, Jayden and Noah (3-way tie), 22

In 2014, the top names in the county were Emma and Logan.

Of the 1,204 girl names bestowed last year, 811 (67%) were used just once. A smaller proportion of the 919 boy names — 549 (60%) — were bestowed once. Here are a few of those single-use names:

Unique Girl Names Unique Boy Names
Amarilla, Antimony, Edelweiss, Ember, Fanny, Lluvia, Lovely Estrella, Mae Pearl, Magnolia, Nkirote, Reminisce, Rosalene, Rurapenthe*, Summit Attimus, Banyan, Cypress, Cyprus, Destry, Ernestor, Fogatia, Iknav, Montgomery, Mercury, Orion, Quintil, Thornhill, Zinley

*Looks like Rurapenthe is based on “Rura Penthe,” the name of a planetoid used as a Klingon penal colony (!) in the Star Trek universe. Its name is a nod to Rorapandi, a penal colony island in the Disney movie 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea (1954). Rorapandi was invented by Disney; it did not appear in the Jules Verne novel Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea (1870).

Source: SoCo Data

Highest Hitting One-Hits – Cinnamon, Destry, Kunta, Yulissa

Here are the one-hit wonder baby names that ranked the highest overall — 700th or above — the single year they made the U.S. top 1,000:

Name Ranked… Likely Explanation
Christop 241st in 1989 Typo*
Yulissa 424th in 1997 The 1996 telenovela Te Sigo Amando featured a character named Yulissa played by Claudia Ramírez.
Nira 463rd in 1933 The National Industrial Recovery Act (NIRA) was authorized by Franklin Delano Roosevelt in 1933.
Elizabet 524th in 1989 Typo*
Manilla 536th in 1898 The first military action of Spanish-American War was the 1898 battle for Manila, the capital of the Philippines.
Jemal 549th in 1969 The Outcasts (1968-1969), the first TV Western with an African-American co-star, featured a character named Jemal.
Alexande 554th in 1989 Typo*
Kunta 572nd in 1977 The 1977 miniseries Roots (based on the Alex Haley novel) featured a character named Kunta Kinte.
Shafter 604th in 1898 Maj. Gen. William Rufus Shafter’s forces took Santiago (and hence helped end the Spanish-American War) in 1898.
Destry 636th in 1964 The short-lived 1964 show Destry was a spin-off of the 1939 film “Destry Rides Again.”
Sonji 638th in 1966 In 1966, Muhammad Ali and his first wife, Sonji Roi, divorced.
Sheilah 665th in 1955 Sheilah Graham Westbrook (1904-1988) was a gossip columnist during Hollywood’s “Golden Age.”
Clarisa 665th in 1994 The popular Nickelodeon sitcom Clarissa Explains it All (1991-1994) won an Emmy in 1994.
Tatia 670th in 1966 A notable 1965 episode of the TV show I Spy (1965-1968) featured a character named Tatia Loring.
Alexandr 676th in 1989 Typo*
Cinnamon 700th in 1969 The first 3 seasons of the Mission: Impossible TV series (1966-1973) featured a character named Cinnamon Carter. (That’s what put Cinnamon on the map.) Early in 1969, “Cinnamon” by Derek (a.k.a. Johnny Cymbal) was an actual one-hit wonder that peaked at #11 on the Billboard Hot 100. Later the same year, “Cinnamon Girl” by Neil Young was released.
Beyonce 700th in 2001 Destiny’s Child (featuring Beyoncé Knowles) won two Grammy Awards in 2001.

I didn’t include one-hits from 1880-1889 (Manerva, Zilpah, Worley, Ambers, Orilla, Simona) or the names that debuted on the 2006 list (Rihanna, Addisyn, Krish, Yandel).

*Here’s more about those typos from 1989.

One-Hit Wonder Baby Names from the 1960s

The names below are “one-hit wonder” names that ranked among the 1,000 most popular U.S. baby names only once–sometime during the 1960s.

Girl Names

  • Caprice – ranked 942nd in 1966 (influence: Chevrolet Caprice)
  • Cinnamon – ranked 700th in 1969 (influence: TV show Mission: Impossible)
  • Daneen – ranked 906th in 1964 (influence: mystery!)
  • Denine – ranked 905th in 1964 (influence: mystery!)
  • Denita – ranked 956th in 1966
  • Djuana – ranked 754th in 1964 (influence: mystery!)
  • Djuna – ranked 738th in 1964 (influence: mystery!)
  • Inger – ranked 947th in 1966
  • Jeanmarie – ranked 969th in 1963
  • Melissia – ranked 944th in 1968
  • Sonji – ranked 638th in 1966 (influence: Sonji Roi, first wife of Muhammad Ali)
  • Sunday – ranked 985th in 1966
  • Tatia – ranked 670th in 1966
  • Wende – ranked 859th in 1967

Boy Names

  • Anthoney – ranked 938th in 1968
  • Destry – ranked 636th in 1964 (influence: TV show Destry)
  • Dwyane – ranked 996th in 1962
  • Jemal – ranked 549th in 1969 (influence: TV show The Outcasts)
  • Tal – ranked 820th in 1963

Want more one-hit wonders? Here are…