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

The graph will take a few seconds to load, thanks for your patience. (Don't worry, it shouldn't take nine months.) If it's taking too long, try reloading the page.


Popularity of the Baby Name James

Number of Babies Named James

Born in the U.S. Since 1880

Posts that Mention the Name James

The One-Hit Wonder Baby Name Jilla

Jilla Webb, singer, 1950sThe uncommon baby name Jilla appeared for the first and only time in the U.S. baby name data in 1951:

  • 1953: unlisted
  • 1952: unlisted
  • 1951: 6 baby girls named Jilla
  • 1950: unlisted
  • 1949: unlisted

No doubt it was put there by American jazz/pop vocalist Jilla Webb, who was at the peak of her fame in the early 1950s. She recorded on the MGM label and regularly performed with the Harry James Orchestra.

Below is a 1958 recording of Jilla Webb singing with Harry James. (The video ought to start at 11:50, when Jilla first comes in.)

Though the similar name Jill was very trendy in the early ’50s — it reached the top 100 by the end of the decade (and stayed there for nearly 30 years) — Jilla remained a mere one-hit wonder.

Do you like the name Jilla? Now that Willa is on the rise, do you think Jilla could catch on as a variant?

P.S. Jilla Webb’s daughter is also a professional singer who goes by the name Jilla Webb.


Popular Baby Names in Western Australia, 2016

According to data from the Western Australia Registry of Births, Deaths and Marriages, the most popular baby names in Western Australia in 2016 were Charlotte and Jack.

Here are WA’s top 10 girl names and top 10 boy names of 2016:

Girl Names
1. Charlotte, 127 baby girls
2. Ava, 120
3. Mia, 113
4. Isla, 109
5. Amelia, 107
6. Olivia, 93
7. Ella, 91
8. Harper, 82
9. Grace, 79
10. Evie, 78

Boy Names
1. Jack, 159 baby boys
2. Oliver, 158
3. Noah, 123
4. William, 114
5. Lucas, 100
6. Ethan + James, 98 each (tie)
7. Thomas + Liam, 88 each (tie)
8. Charlie, 85
9. Jacob, 80
10. Mason, 79

In 2015, the top names were Olivia and Oliver.

New to the girls’ list are Ella, Harper and Evie. They replace Sophie, Ruby, and Chloe.

New to the boys’ list are Lucas, Charlie, and Jacob. Gone from the boys’ list is Lachlan.

To see more rankings from Australia and New Zealand, check out the Australia & New Zealand name rankings subcategory.

Source: Popular Baby Names (Births, Deaths and Marriages)

The Many Names in Dobie Gillis

The baby name Dobie debuted in the US baby name data in 1960.

Girl-crazy teenager Dobie Gillis was a character created by writer Max Shulman in the 1940s. He was first brought to life in the movie The Affairs of Dobie Gillis in 1953, but the most memorable portrayal of Dobie was by Dwayne Hickman in the four-season TV sitcom The Many Loves of Dobie Gillis, which premiered in September of 1959.

Dobie Gillis is notable for being “the first prime-time series to consistently privilege teenage characters, activities, and spaces over those associated with family shows.”

It was also known for the unusual character names. Dobie (pronounced doh-bee, rhymes with Toby) had friends with names like:

  • Maynard (a beatnik played by Bob Denver, who later portrayed Gilligan)
  • Zelda (a brainiac played by Sheila James Kuehl, sister of Jeri Lou)
  • Thalia Menninger (a rich girl played by Tuesday Weld)

These “uncommon first names [were] evidently meant to seem vaguely silly in their failure to conform with ’50s norms.”

The show ended up influencing the usage of several baby names. First of all, it was behind the debut of the name Dobie in 1960:

  • 1964: 9 baby boys named Dobie
  • 1963: unlisted
  • 1962: 6 baby boys named Dobie
  • 1961: 8 baby boys named Dobie
  • 1960: 9 baby boys named Dobie [debut]
  • 1959: unlisted
  • 1958: unlisted

The name Thalia also saw a spike in usage in 1960, which makes sense because all but two of the episodes featuring Thalia Menninger were first-season (1959-1960) episodes. Dobie pronounced Thalia’s name thale-ya.

  • 1964: 46 baby girls named Thalia
  • 1963: 42 baby girls named Thalia
  • 1962: 42 baby girls named Thalia
  • 1961: 46 baby girls named Thalia
  • 1960: 90 baby girls named Thalia
  • 1959: 30 baby girls named Thalia
  • 1958: 24 baby girls named Thalia

Finally, the name Zelda saw elevated usage in the early ’60s:

  • 1964: 133 baby girls named Zelda
  • 1963: 171 baby girls named Zelda
  • 1962: 178 baby girls named Zelda
  • 1961: 168 baby girls named Zelda
  • 1960: 136 baby girls named Zelda
  • 1959: 142 baby girls named Zelda
  • 1958: 131 baby girls named Zelda

Fun fact: Zelda — who pursued Dobie as ardently as Dobie pursued all other females — once convinced a girl named Phyllis to break it off with Dobie by warning her that her married name would be “Phyllis Gillis.”

Many of the secondary and single-episode characters had unusual names as well. Here are some examples:

Aphrodite
Arabella
Aristede
Blossom
Bruno
Bubbles
Chatsworth
Clothilde
Clydene
Drusilla
Esmond
Glynis
Imogene
Jethro
Kermit
Laurabelle
Leander
Maribelle
Mignonne
Poppy
Riff

Do you like any of the above Dobie Gillis names? How about the name “Dobie” itself?

Sources:

  • Kearney, Mary C. “Teenagers and Television in the United States.” Museum of Broadcast Communications Encyclopedia of Television, ed. by Horace Newcomb, 2nd ed., New York: Routledge, 2013, pp. 2276-2281.
  • Sterritt, David. Mad to be Saved: The Beats, the ’50s, and Film. Carbondale, IL: Southern Illinois University Press, 1998.
  • The Many Loves of Dobie Gillis (TV Series 1959–1963) – IMDb

Popular Baby Names in Oregon, 2016

According to data released by Oregon Health Authority, the most popular baby names in the state in 2016 were Olivia and Oliver.

Here are Oregon’s top 10 girl names and top 10 boy names of 2016:

Girl Names
1. Olivia, 249 baby girls
2. Emma, 213
3. Sophia, 179
4. Evelyn, 172
5. Charlotte, 171
6. Abigail, 153
7. Harper, 148
8. Amelia, 137
9. Isabella, 134
10. Ava, 132

Boy Names
1. Oliver, 228 baby boys
2. Henry, 205
3. William, 201
4. Benjamin, 194
5. Liam, 193
6. Wyatt, 181
7. Owen, 179
8. Noah, 177
9. Mason, 175
10. Elijah, 165

In 2015, the top names were Emma and Liam.

In the girls’ top 10, Harper replaces Mia.

In the boys’ top 10, Benjamin and Owen replace James and Alexander.

Source: Oregon Health Authority – Annual Report Volume 1, 2016

Popular Baby Names in South Australia, 2016

According to data released in March by South Australia’s Office of Births, Deaths and Marriages, the most popular baby names in South Australia in 2016 were again Charlotte and Oliver.

Here are South Australia’s top 10 girl names and top 10 boy names of 2016:

Girl Names
1. Charlotte, 139 baby girls
2. Olivia, 123
3. Ava, 116
4. Mia, 103
5. Amelia, 96
6. Evie, 94
7. Emily, 85
8. Isla, 84
9. Ruby, 81
10. Ella, 80 (tied with #11 Sophie)

Boy Names
1. Oliver, 190 baby boys
2. Jack, 129
3. William, 117
4. James, 100 (2-way tie)
5. Mason, 100 (2-way tie)
6. Henry, 96 (2-way tie)
7. Noah, 96 (2-way tie)
8. Lucas, 93
9. Ethan, 89
10. Liam, 82 (tied with #11 Max)

In the girls’ top 10, Evie, Isla, Ruby and Ella replace Scarlett, Sophie, Chloe and Grace.

In the boys’ top 10, Mason and Henry replace Charlie and Thomas.

Here’s a sampling of names from the other end of the list. Each of these was given to a single baby in South Australia last year:

  • Unique Girl Names: Avoca, Bindarray, Clova, Diyo, Ellaline, Fradella, Gladys, Hilivelia, Ilina, Jency, Kabedi, Lomina, Minuli, Nazo, Ottilia, Porphyria, Queen, Rija, Sedra, Taskeen, Uzra, Vaeora, Winterlily, Xindi, Yilia, Zarlie
  • Unique Boy Names: Axelian, Boris, Callington, Dipson, Elio, Finlo, Gino, Hyson, Ivor, Jeffen, Kenula, Lison, Morley, Noam, Oxled, Penn, Quade, Reef, Salem, Tully, Uzziah, Valan, Walt, Xinze, York, Zarlo

Finally, here are the 2015 rankings, if you’d like to compare.

Source: Popular Baby Names in 2016 – Govt. of South Australia