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

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Popularity of the Baby Name Glenn

Number of Babies Named Glenn

Born in the U.S. Since 1880

Posts that Mention the Name Glenn

Danger Is My Baby’s Middle Name

Danger - Baby's Middle Name

A pair of real-life “Danger is my middle name” babies have been featured in the news lately:

  • Rafferty Basil Danger Wills, born in January to Felicity and Sam Wills of England.
  • Stephen Danger James, born in January to Telita and Dean James of Australia.

But these aren’t the first dangerously named babies to make headlines. Here are some earlier examples:

  • Nash Edward Danger Gray, born in 2011 to Jon and Ruth Gray of Nevada.
  • Bodhi Danger Huxhagen, born in 2011 to Rowan and Belinda Huxhagen of Australia.
  • Billie Danger Lampard (girl) and Ridley Danger Lampard (boy), twins, born in 2010 to Amy and Glenn Lampard of Australia.
  • Radley Danger Chapple, born circa 2008 to Peppa and John Chapple of California.
  • Maxwell Danger Rogers, born in 2006 to Chloe Maxwell and Mat Rogers of Australia.
  • Broderick Danger Scott, born in 2006 to Sarah Wilner and Kevin Scott of California.
  • Jakob Danger Armstrong, born in 1998 to Adrienne and Billie Joe Armstrong of California.

And I’ve come across a few other examples that never made the news.

So, just how common is the middle name Danger?

The SSA doesn’t publish middle name data, so there’s no official set of numbers we can look at. Fellow baby name blogger Laura Wattenberg claimed last year that Danger was a “really popular middle name for boys right now.” I disagree — Danger is still uncommon/bizarre enough to be newsworthy, after all — but it does look like Danger has been picking up steam lately.

Would you ever consider (I mean seriously consider) giving your baby the middle name Danger?

Sources: Billie and Ridley Lampard given ‘Danger’ as middle name, Danger is his middle name, Danger is my middle name…no really, it is, Developer suing ‘Baywatch’ star, Real parents can give their children weird baby names just like the celebs, The boy with danger as a name, The new year brings first local baby, What’s in a (middle) name? Simple or creative, the choice challenges parents

P.S. There’s a guy in Florida named Danger Dangervil.

The Baby Name Danzig

Glenn Danzig photoOnce upon a time, MTV played music videos. (Crazy, I know!) And, during that era — in 1993 and 1994 specifically — one of the videos they aired a lot was the video for Danzig’s song “Mother ’93.”

“Mother ’93” became Danzig’s highest-charting single, peaking at #43 on Billboard‘s Hot 100 in April of 1994. The same year, we see the baby name Danzig pop up for the first time on the SSA’s baby name list:

  • 1993: not listed
  • 1994: 7 baby boys with the name Danzig [debut]
  • 1995: not listed

The heavy metal band takes its name from vocalist Glenn Danzig. Glenn was born with the surname Anzalone; I’m not sure why he chose Danzig (the German name of the Polish city Gdansk) for his stage name.

The baby name Danzig disappeared from the national list for a few years, but has since reappeared (just like other ’90s alt-rock names). Last year, 5 baby boys were named Danzig.

What are your thoughts on the name Danzig?

Baby Born Day of Orbit Named Orbit

On the day John Glenn became the first American to orbit the Earth (February 20, 1962) a baby boy was born in Ogden, Utah, to Mr. and Mrs. H. Ray Hill.

He was named Orbit.

(In fact, hundreds of U.S. babies have been named orbit over the years. Two particularly memorable Orbits are Glenn Orbit Reeves, born on 2/20/1962 in Texas, and Orbit Paul Moon, born on 3/10/1902 in Iowa.)

Source: “Utah Parents Name Arrival Orbit.” Florence Times 27 Feb. 1962, section 2: 8.

Baby Name Needed – Boy Name for Carol & Todd

A reader named Carol is expecting her first child next month. Here’s what she writes:

We are having our first child, a boy, in February. We’ve decided his middle name will be Philip, after my Dad.

With the middle and last names already being kind of wordy and long (Philip Underhill) I’m leaning towards a simple first name. I like Kyle probably the best so far. Cole is nice and simple. Or Carter, Carson, Owen, Nathan, Nolan, Gavin.

I don’t want a name too weird, or too common. Something in between.

Any other names to suggest? Thanks for your help :)

In her email, Carol mentioned that she’s active and outdoorsy, and that she and her husband Todd love “anything to do with nature – and getting out there and enjoying it.” Her site, Tarol’s Webpage, features sections on backpacking, fire lookouts, even bear encounters (!). She works for the U.S. Forest Service (and she notes: “No, we aren’t going to name our boy Forest, lol”).

I like all of the names on the shortlist, especially the one-syllable options (Kyle, Cole). In fact, I think Carol’s favorite is my favorite as well.

Carol mentioned she wanted something not “too weird, or too common.” None of the current favorites are weird, but I did want to point out that a couple (Nathan, Gavin) are pretty popular right now, and others (Owen, Carter) could be headed that way:

Name 2008 2009 2010
Nathan 13,214 babies 12,077 babies 11,269 babies
ranked 21st ranked 26th ranked 27th
Gavin 11,727 babies 10,710 babies 9,551 babies
ranked 30th ranked 33rd ranked 37th
Owen 7,788 babies 8,115 babies 8,136 babies
ranked 58th ranked 51st ranked 47th
Carter 7,051 babies 8,157 babies 8,101 babies
ranked 65th ranked 50th ranked 48th
Carson 5,121 babies 4,981 babies 5,064 babies
ranked 89th ranked 86th ranked 80th
Cole 5,378 babies 5,258 babies 4,562 babies
ranked 85th ranked 82nd ranked 89th
Nolan 3,147 babies 3,427 babies 3,666 babies
ranked 131st ranked 122nd ranked 104th
Kyle 4,688 babies 4,157 babies 3,539 babies
ranked 97th ranked 100th ranked 107th

I don’t want to dissuade anyone from using the names Nathan and Gavin — on the contrary, I like both very much — but I didn’t want the names’ current popularity to come as a surprise later on.

As far as suggestions go, I wrote up a long list and then boiled it down to these five favorites:

Chase (rank: 66th)
This was the very first name that came to mind. It’s simple and youthful, and it just sounds active. Which is what I imagine the son of two nature-lovers will turn out to be. :)

Lance (rank: 445th)
I like this one for the same reasons I like Chase, and I also like the consonance of the L’s in “Lance Philip Underhill.”

Sawyer (rank: 173rd)
Again, a youthful feel, thanks no doubt to Tom Sawyer. Plus, surname-names are stylish right now.

Reed (380th) or Reid (291st)
A simple name with an outdoorsy association, though the fact that there are two popular spellings could cause confusion.

Nash (rank: 612th)
A bit quirky, but it’s simple and strong-sounding, and its etymology connects it to nature (it originally denoted someone who lived near “an ash” [tree]).

Some runners-up: Glenn, Jack, Keith, Kevin, Max, Tate, Roscoe, Wyatt.

Which of the names above are your favorites for Carol and Todd’s firstborn son? What other names would you suggest?

Babies Named for Aviator Jack Vilas

Jack VilasBack in 1913, at least two dozen baby boys in the U.S. were suddenly named Vilas, making Vilas the most popular debut name for baby boys that year:

  • 1915: 16 baby boys named Vilas
  • 1914: 13 baby boys (and 6 baby girls) named Vilas
  • 1913: 24 baby boys named Vilas [debut]
  • 1912: unlisted
  • 1911: unlisted

Many of these babies were born in Wisconsin specifically:

  • 1915: 8 babies named Vilas in Wisconsin
  • 1914: 7 babies named Vilas in Wisconsin
  • 1913: 10 babies named Vilas in Wisconsin
  • 1912: unlisted
  • 1911: unlisted

Data from the SSDI (which is more accurate than SSA data for the late 1800s and early 1900s) shows the same 1913 spike and the same high usage in Wisconsin:

  • 1915: 25 people named Vilas (7 in WI, 2 in MI)
  • 1914: 27 people named Vilas (8 in WI, 2 in IL)
  • 1913: 45 people named Vilas (15 WI, 3 in IL)
  • 1912: 25 people named Vilas (13 WI, 1 in IL, 1 in MI)
  • 1911: 24 people named Vilas (8 in WI)

So what inspired the spike?

The spike was inspired by aviation pioneer Logan Archbold “Jack” Vilas. He purchased a hydro-aeroplane from Glenn Curtiss in the spring of 1913 and, while his plane was being built, went to flight school (for just four weeks!). Soon after that, Vilas became the first person to fly across Lake Michigan, traveling west from St. Joseph, Michigan, to Chicago, Illinois, in about an hour and a half on July 1, 1913.

But this doesn’t explain why Wisconsinites liked the name so much even before Jack Vilas came along.

It seems that people in the Badger State already had an affinity for the name Vilas thanks to a pair of Wisconsin politicians: Levi Vilas (1811-1879) and his son William Vilas (1840-1908).

Jack was actually a distant cousin of Levi and William. Their closest common ancestor was Noah Vilas, born in Massachusetts in 1733. Noah’s father Peter had brought the surname over from England.


Image: San Diego Air & Space Museum

Babies Named for Mercury Astronauts

I’ve got a few more astronaut names for today. Yesterday’s astronauts were from the Apollo program, but today’s are from the earlier Mercury program (1959-1963), which was the nation’s first human spaceflight program.

Alan Shepard
The first American (and second human) in space was Alan Shepard. He piloted a sub-16-minute suborbital flight on May 5, 1961. (Yuri Gagarin’s flight on April 12 had been an orbital flight lasting 108 minutes.)

At 11:42 am, “an hour and eight minutes after Shephard’s [sic] rocket took off,” a baby boy was born to Mr. and Mrs. William J. Mann of Middletown, New York. The boy was named Alan Shepard Mann.

“I had thought of the name myself,” said Mr. Mann. “Then so many friends called and suggested it that we decided to name the baby Alan Shepard. My wife had already picked out a name, Ralph Luppon, but she agreed too that under the circumstances it was the only thing to do.”

John Glenn
The first American to orbit the Earth and the third American (and fifth human) in space was John Glenn. He traveled around the Earth three times during a nearly 5-hour flight on February 20, 1962.

Here are just a few of the babies born on Feb. 20 and named in honor of John Glenn:

  • John Glenn Donato, baby boy, born to Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Donato of Burbank, California.
  • John Glenn Guntle, baby boy, born at 2:42 p.m., “just one minute before astronaut John H. Glenn Jr. landed Tuesday in the Atlantic Ocean after his third orbit of the earth,” to Mr. and Mrs. Larry Guntle of Dowagiac, Michigan.
  • John Glenn Fortner, baby boy, born to Mr. and Mrs. Thomas Fortner of Spartanburg, South Carolina.
  • Glenn John Ashley Mertz, baby boy, born “as astronaut John H. Glenn Jr. re-entered the atmosphere” to Mr. and Mrs. Louis Ashley Mertz of Freeport, New York.
  • Jonna Glyn Morse, baby girl, born at 10:50 a.m., “while Col. Glenn was still in orbit,” to Mr. and Mrs. Sidney L. Morse of Los Angeles, California.

John Glenn didn’t move the needle on the baby name John, but baby name Glenn spiked in usage in 1962.


  • “Astronaut’s Name Given New Babies.” Los Angeles Times 25 Feb. 1962: GB2.
  • “It Took Week for Famous Name to Stick.” Spartanburg Herald 28 Feb. 1962: 1.
  • “Middletown Infant May Be First Namesake of Spaceman.” Evening News [Newburgh, NY] 6 May 1961: 1.
  • “Name Fame.” Spokane Daily Chronicle 23 Feb. 1962: 1.
  • “Tots Named for Glenn.” Meriden Record 21 Feb. 1962: 8.

Would You Give Your Son the Name Bimbo?

Bimbo, Jim Reeves
Bimbo, Jim Reeves
I ask because Bimbo was a one-hit wonder on the U.S. baby name charts in 1954. Five baby boys got the name that year.

  • 1955: unlisted
  • 1954: 5 baby boys named Bimbo
  • 1953: unlisted

Cruel name? Perhaps.

Though these parents weren’t bestowing it with the slang term in mind. (Bimbo, originally a variant of bambino, Italian for “baby,” had become a synonym for “floozie” back in the 1920s.)

They’d heard it in a country song about a little boy called Bimbo.

“Bimbo” was written in the late ’40s by Glenn O’Dell. The country song was recorded by various singers over the years, but seemed to do particularly well in 1954.

First there was the Jim Reeves version of the song, which hit the top of the country charts in January of 1954. Then there was the Ruby Wright version of the song, which hit #7 on the UK singles chart in April of 1954. Finally, Gene Autry’s version, which I don’t believe charted anywhere, was released in 1954. (A few years before, Gene’s “Frosty the Snowman” had inspired a handful of parents to name their sons Frosty.)

Here’s the first verse of “Bimbo”:

Bimbo is a little boy who’s got million friends
and every time he passes by, they all invite him in
He’ll clap his hands, sing and dance, and talk his baby talk
With a hole in pants, and his knees stickin’ out, he’s just big enough to walk

And here’s a video featuring the Jim Reeves recording:

What do you think of the name Bimbo?

Source: Bimbo – Online Etymology Dictionary