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

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Popularity of the Baby Name Jon

Number of Babies Named Jon

Born in the U.S. Since 1880

Posts that Mention the Name Jon

Babies Named for Jon-Erik Hexum

Jon-Erik HexumSpeaking of Erik Estrada, here’s another Erik-related pop culture name from the ’80s.

Jon-Erik Hexum was an up-and-coming actor in the early ’80s. His first role was as Phineas Bogg in the TV show Voyagers! (1982-1983), and his final role was as Mac Harper in the TV show Cover Up (1984-1985).

His career was cut short when, on the set of Cover Up in late 1984, he accidentally killed himself with one of the guns used for filming.

The compound name Jonerik debuted on the SSA’s baby name list in 1983 and saw peak usage in 1985, the year after Hexum died.

  • 1987: 22 baby boys named Jonerik
  • 1986: 25 baby boys named Jonerik
  • 1985: 62 baby boys named Jonerik
  • 1984: 25 baby boys named Jonerik
  • 1983: 20 baby boys named Jonerik [debut]
  • 1982: unlisted

The name Joneric followed a similar trajectory.

By the early 1990s, though, both names had fallen off the list entirely.

What do you think of the name Jon-Erik?

Most Common Names of D.C. Voters, by Party

capitol building DC

A couple of weeks ago, reader Becca sent me a link to a Washington Post graphic showing the 10 most common names of registered voters within each of Washington D.C.’s four main political parties — Statehood Green, Democratic, Republican and Libertarian.

Here’s the info from the graphic:

Statehood Green Democratic Republican Libertarian
1. Jon
2. Jesse
3. Barry
4. Darnell
5. Ian
6. Juan
7. Jordan
8. Jerry
9. Corey
10. Tyrone
1. Lillie
2. Laverne
3. Ella
4. Bernice
5. Mildred
6. Peggy
7. Betty
8. Ethel
9. Toni
10. Geraldine
1. Tyler
2. Bradley
3. Kelsey
4. Lindsey
5. Kristina
6. Meredith
7. Caroline
8. Kyle
9. Kelly
10. Taylor
1. Jared
2. Jon
3. Brendan
4. Derek
5. Joy
6. Kyle
7. Brooke
8. Julian
9. Nicholas
10. Chelsea

The graphic didn’t mention the disparity between the sizes of these groups, though, so let’s throw that in too. The lists were based on data from mid-June, 2015, so here are the D.C. voter registration statistics from June 30th:

  • Statehood Green: 3,820 registered voters (0.82% of all registered voters in D.C.)
  • Democrats: 350,684 (75.58%)
  • Republicans: 28,560 (6.16%)
  • Libertarians: 779 (0.17%)

The Democrats outnumber the Libertarians by more than 450 to 1, in other words.

Here are the lists individually. After each name is the gender it’s most closely associated with and the year of peak usage as a baby name (in terms of percentage of births) since 1900.

Statehood Green (0.82% of registered voters):

  1. Jon, male, peak usage in 1968
  2. Jesse, male, 1981
  3. Barry, male, 1962
  4. Darnell, male, 1984
  5. Ian, male, 2003
  6. Juan, male, 1999
  7. Jordan, male, 1997
  8. Jerry, male, 1941
  9. Corey, male, 1977
  10. Tyrone, male, 1970

The top Statehood Green names are 100% male, and most saw peak usage during the last four decades of the 20th century.

Democrat (75.58% of registered voters):

  1. Lillie, female, peak usage in 1900
  2. Laverne, female, 1928
  3. Ella, female, 2012
  4. Bernice, female, 1921
  5. Mildred, female, 1920
  6. Peggy, female, 1937
  7. Betty, female, 1934
  8. Ethel, female, 1900
  9. Toni, female, 1968
  10. Geraldine, female, 1931

The top Democrat names are 100% female, and most saw peak usage in the first half of the 20th century, especially the ’20s and ’30s.

Republican (6.16% of registered voters):

  1. Tyler, male, peak usage in 1994
  2. Bradley, male, 1979
  3. Kelsey, female, 1992
  4. Lindsey, female, 1984
  5. Kristina, female, 1985
  6. Meredith, female, 1981
  7. Caroline, female, 2014
  8. Kyle, male, 1990
  9. Kelly, female, 1977
  10. Taylor, female, 1996

The top Republican names are 70% female and 30% male, and most saw peak usage during the last three decades of the 20th century, especially the ’90s.

Libertarian (0.17% of registered voters):

  1. Jared, male, peak usage in 1998
  2. Jon, male, 1968
  3. Brendan, male, 1999
  4. Derek, male, 1982
  5. Joy, female, 1974
  6. Kyle, male, 1990
  7. Brooke, female, 2003
  8. Julian, male, 2014
  9. Nicholas, male, 1999
  10. Chelsea, female, 1992

The top Libertarian names are 70% male and 30% female, and most saw peak usage during the last few decades of the 20th century, especially the ’90s.


It was interesting to see just how feminine and old-fashioned the top Democrat names are. But the thing that most surprised was that the Green party’s list included zero female names. I would have guessed that, if any list here was going to be 100% male, it’d be the Libertarian party — definitely not the Green party.

What are your thoughts on these lists?

Sources: Identity Politics, Washington Post, December 2015; Voter Registration Statistics – DC Board of Elections; Popular Baby Names – SSA
Image: NPS

P.S. Thank you, Becca!

The Names Harriet and Duncan Are Illegal in Iceland

Iceland’s restrictive baby naming law is in the news again. Last year the problem was Blær, this year it’s Harriet.

Tristan Cardew (of Britain) and his wife Kristin (of Iceland) live in Iceland and have two children: Duncan, 12, and Harriet, 10. Duncan’s and Harriet’s Icelandic passports have always listed them as Drengur Cardew (Boy Cardew) and Stúlka Cardew (Girl Cardew) because Iceland doesn’t officially recognize their non-Icelandic names.

Not long ago, Tristan and Kristin tried to renew Harriet’s passport ahead of a vacation, but the National Registry in Reykjavik denied their request. They are appealing the decision. (In the meanwhile, they’ve gotten Harriet an emergency UK passport from the British embassy.)

The Cardews could get round Harriet’s problem by giving her an Icelandic middle name.

“But it’s a bit late for that, and way too silly,” said [Tristan] Cardew. “Are they saying they don’t want us here?”

I’m not sure how much support/criticism the name law gets from residents of Iceland, but Jón Gnarr, former mayor of Reykjavik, has called the law “unfair, stupid [and] against creativity.”

What other names has Iceland declared illegal? Here are links to all of the approved and rejected baby names in Iceland.

Source: Icelandic girls can’t be called Harriet, government tells family

Name Quotes for the Weekend #21

Funny name quote from Barack Obama.

Spoken by Barack Hussein Obama at the Alfred E. Smith Memorial Foundation Dinner on October 16, 2008:

Many of you know that I got my name, Barack, from my father…and I got my middle name from somebody who obviously didn’t think I’d ever run for president.

From an interview with Mexican-Kenyan actress Lupita Nyong’o [pronounced loo‑PEE‑ta NYONG‑oh] on Jimmy Kimmel Live:

Jimmy: I love that they gave you a traditional Mexican name even though they were just there for a short time.

Lupita: Well, in our tradition, it’s custom to name your child after the events of the day. So, I was born in Mexico, so they thought it would be fit to give me a Mexican name.

From an article on names by Ralph Berrier, Jr.:

The Social Security folks should let some of today’s creative parents take a whack at a new name [for the website].

Anybody who can come up with Zayn and Destinee could probably do better than “Popular Baby Names.” Maybe “Baybee Billin’?” or “Mom’s Next Tattoo” or “Ethan and Chloe, You’re Going Down!”

From a CNN interview with “futurist” Faith Popcorn:

Question: Is Faith Popcorn your real name?

Faith Popcorn: The story of my name is… I used to work in an advertising agency, and my boss, Gino Garlanda, could never pronounce my real name, which was Plotkin, and he would always introduce me to clients as Faith Popcorn. So, I changed it! It’s on page 100 of The Popcorn Report.

From an article about the sinister syllable “mor”:

One possible case of a word changing form to have a phonestheme is the oldest of the “mor” names above, Mordred, the betrayer of King Arthur. His name actually was originally Medraut or Modred, Celtic versions of the Latin Moderatus. How did it get the “mor”? Possibly with some influence of his mother, Morgause, or of Morgan le Fay. But possibly also through some sound associations, with murder (earlier murther) and with the French morte. After all, the best-known account of the Arthurian legend is Malory’s Le Morte d’Arthur.

From an article about an octopus named Athena:

I was struck by this, since Murphy and others had first described Athena’s personality to me as “feisty.” “They earn their names,” Murphy had told me. Athena is named for the Greek goddess of wisdom, war, and strategy. She is not usually a laid-back octopus, like George had been. “Athena could pull you into the tank,” Murphy had warned. “She’s curious about what you are.”

(Found via Kottke.)

From an article about the Spanish town of Castrillo Matajudios [Castrillo Kill Jews]:

“Those of us who have lived all our lives in Castrillo Matajudios don’t give it a second thought. But the moment you go elsewhere it sounds bad,” the mayor told AFP in an interview.

“Nowadays when people hear Castrillo Matajudios they go, ‘What a village. They kill Jews there. You have killed Jews’,” he said.

“There are some villagers, business people who travel to Israel, and they try not to show their identity card. It is a name that we know today is not very correct,” the mayor explained.

From a 2005 interview with comedian Ricky Gervais on The Daily Show:

Ricky: My highlight [of the Emmys] was a guy who won who had the best name in the world. I think he’s a director or producer or something, and his name was Bucky Gunts.

Jon: Bucky Gunts.

Ricky: And, I mean, you know — I’m sorry, this is a very intelligent, erudite show, but — I giggled for about an hour. I, honestly, I couldn’t believe my luck. Every time I thought of it, I giggled again.

(Ricky himself presented Gunts with an Emmy in 2010, and his enthusiasm over the name made “Bucky Gunts” a trending topic on Twitter.)

For previous quote posts, see the name quotes category.

Someone Fact-Checks a Baby Name Claim, Finally

Univision anchor Jorge Ramos was a guest on the Daily Show a few weeks ago. While talking to host Jon Stewart about the growing Latino population in the U.S., Ramos claimed that “the most popular name is no longer John or Steven. It’s Jose, Camilo and Maria of course.”

Now, the Daily Show is a comedy show — Ramos also joked there’d be “more tortillas than hamburger buns” thanks to the changing demographic — but the people at PunditFact were curious enough about Ramos’s offhand name claim to do some digging.

First they got in touch with Ramos. He said he’d been speaking with “states like California and Texas in mind, not so much the entire United States. And he thought he was talking about which names were more popular (as a comparison), not the most popular overall.”

Then PunditFact checked the SSA data — you can see all the details in their Truth-o-Meter post about Ramos’s claim.

Their conclusion?

Ramos said that the most popular names are no longer John or Steven, but Jose, Camilo and Maria. Afterward, Ramos said he was thinking of states with large Hispanic populations.

With that caveat, he has a bit of a point. In states with the highest percentage of Hispanics, Jose beats out John and Steven. Camilo and Maria are not really contenders. None of these names are the most popular in any state.

We rate the claim Mostly False.

“Mostly False” — nice!

A lot of media people don’t bother to check baby name-related claims, even though the facts are easy to find. Kudos to PunditFact for calling Ramos out on this one.

What’s the Most Common Name in the U.S. Senate?

In early 2011, the blog Smart Politics analyzed the first names of all the U.S. Senators elected or appointed within the last 100 years.

In total, there were 884 senators and 313 names.

The most common names were these:

  1. John (including Jon, Jonathan, and Johnny) – total of 65 senators (7.4%)
  2. William (including Bill) – 50 (5.7%)
  3. James (including Jim) – 44 (5.0%)
  4. Robert (including Bob and Rob) – 34 (3.9%)
  5. Thomas (including Tom) – 29 (3.3%)
  6. George – 25 (2.8%)
  7. Charles (including Chuck) – 22 (2.5%)
  8. Joseph (including Joe) – 21 (2.4%)
  9. Frank – 17 (1.9%)
  10. Richard (including Rick and Dick) – 16 (1.8%)

Some of the unique names were Spessard, Furnifold, Zales, Xenophon, Olympia, Orrin, Rand, Saxby, Sherrod and Barack.

Names that have become popular recently in the Senate include Mark and Mike/Michael.

Source: What’s in a Name? From Abraham to Zell, 100 Years of U.S. Senators

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.