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

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 Noretta

Number of Babies Named Noretta

Born in the U.S. Since 1880

Posts that Mention the Name Noretta

Rare Girl Names from Early Cinema: Letter N

nayda, nameNeed a rare, retro N-name?

Here’s the next installment of uncommon female names associated with very old films (released from the 1910s to the 1940s).

I’ve included links to popularity graphs for names that have seen enough usage to appear in the SSA data.

*

Nabby
Nabby Goode was a character played by actress Virginia Weidler in the film Maid of Salem (1937).

Nadina
Nadina was a character name in multiple films, including A Polar Romance (1915) and Runaway Queen (1934).

  • Usage of the baby name Nadina.

Nadira
Princess Nadira was a character played by actress Malvina Longfellow in the film The Indian Love Lyrics (1923).

  • Usage of the baby name Nadira.

Nadje
Nadje was a character played by actress Patricia Palmer in the film The Leopard’s Bride (1916).

Nadji
Nadji was a character name in multiple films, including Chandu the Magician (1932) and The Return of Chandu (1934).

Naela
Sun Priestess Naela was a character played by actress Lil Dagover in the film The Spiders (1919).

  • Usage of the baby name Naela.

Nahaku
Nahaku was a character played by actress Helen Lindroth in the short film The Dance of Death (1914).

Naida
Naida Lessing was an actress who appeared in 1 film in 1918. Naida was also a character name in multiple films, including The Jungle Lovers (short, 1915) and A Cafe in Cairo (1924).

  • Usage of the baby name Naida.

Naidra
Naidra was a character played by actress Mignon Anderson in the short film Naidra, the Dream Woman (1914).

Naio
Naio was a character played by actress Adda Gleason in the short film The Red Blood of Courage (1915).

Nairaini
Nairaini was a character played by actress Claire Du Brey in the film The Bronze Bell (1921).

Naja
Naja was a character played by actress Maria Montez in the film Cobra Woman (1944).

  • Usage of the baby name Naja.

Nakula
Nakula was a character played by actress Vivian Reed in the film The Lad and the Lion (1917).

Nalia
Nalia McCabe was a character played by actress Corinne Barker in the film Enchantment (1921).

  • Usage of the baby name Nalia.

Nalu
Nalu was a character played by actress Ramsay Ames in the film Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves (1944).

Nan
Nan Christy was an actress who appeared in films in the 1910s. She was born in 1894. Nan was also a character name in multiple films, including Nan’s Victory (short, 1914) and Nan of the North (1922).

  • Usage of the baby name Nan.

Nance
Nance was a character name in multiple films, including The Clutch of Circumstance (short, 1915) and Nance (1920).

  • Usage of the baby name Nance.

Nanci
Nanci Price was an actress who appeared in films from the 1920s to the 1930s. She was born in Colorado in 1918.

  • Usage of the baby name Nanci.

Naneta
Naneta was a character played by actress Clara Williams in the film The Criminal (1916).

Nanette
Nanette was a character name in multiple films, including Nanette of the Wilds (1916) and The Cowboy and the Countess (1926).

Nanine
Nanine was a character played by actress Beryl Morhange in the film Camille (1915) and by Jessie Ralph in Camille (1936).

  • Usage of the baby name Nanine.

Nannie
Nannie Maitland was a character played by actress Evelyn Brent in the film The Iron Woman (1916).

  • Usage of the baby name Nannie.

Nanon
Nanon was a character name in multiple films, including The Conquering Power (1921) and Lady of the Pavements (1929).

Nara
Nara Alexieff was a character played by actress Clara Kimball Young in the film The Hands of Nara (1922).

  • Usage of the baby name Nara.

Narcissa
Narcissa was a character name in multiple films, including The Oregon Trail (1923) and For Alimony Only (1926).

Nargis
Nargis was a character played by actress Marguerite Comont in the film Kismet (1920).

  • Usage of the baby name Nargis.

Narita
Narita was a character played by actress Myrna Loy in the film Cock o’ the Walk (1930).

  • Usage of the baby name Narita.

Narjis
Narjis was a character played by actress Blanche Friderici in the film Kismet (1930).

  • Usage of the baby name Narjis.

Nasa
Nasa Springer was a character played by actress Clara Bow in the film Call Her Savage (1932).

Nasoni
Nasoni was a character played by actress Doraldina in the film The Woman Untamed (1920).

Natacha
Natacha was a character played by actress Edna Sedgewick in the film Red Barry (1938).

Natcha
Natcha Manyus was a character played by actress Claudia Dell in the film The Lost City (1935).

Natchi
Natchi was a character played by actress Carmen Phillips in the film The Great Circus Mystery (1925).

Natoosa
Natoosa was a character played by actress Mary Charleson in the short film Natoosa (1912).

Natrova
Natrova was a character played by actress Milada Mladova in the film Escape Me Never (1947).

Naturich
Naturich was a character played by actress Red Wing (Lillian St. Cyr) in the film The Squaw Man (1914), by Ann Little in The Squaw Man (1918), and by Lupe Velez in The Squaw Man (1931).

Nauma
Nauma was a character played by actress Princess Uwane Yea in the film The Heart of Wetona (1919).

Navarre
Navarre King was a character played by actress Sally Eilers in the film Broadway Babies (1929).

Nayda
Nayda was a character played by actress Rita Hayworth in the film Charlie Chan in Egypt (1935).

  • Usage of the baby name Nayda.

Nazama
Nazama was a character played by actress Binnie Barnes in the film The Adventures of Marco Polo (1938).

Nazimova
Alla Nazimova, often credited simply as Nazimova, was an actress who appeared in films from the 1910s to the 1940s. She was born in Russia (now Ukraine) in 1879. Her birth name was Miriam Edez Adelaida Leventon. Alla was also a character played by actress Sally Crute in the film The Cossack Whip (1916).

Nea
Nea was a character played by actress Dona Drake in the film Aloma of the South Seas (1941).

  • Usage of the baby name Nea.

Nechia
Nechia was a character played by actress Dolly Larkin in the short film A Daughter of the Redskins (1912).

Necia
Necia was a character played by actress Marceline Day in the film The Barrier (1926) and by Jean Parker in The Barrier (1937).

  • Usage of the baby name Necia.

Nedda
Nedda was a character name in multiple films, including The Soul of Luigi (short, 1914) and A Clown Must Laugh (1936).

  • Usage of the baby name Nedda.

Nedra
Nedra was a character name in multiple films, including Strength of Family Ties (short, 1914) and The Empress (1917).

  • Usage of the baby name Nedra.

Neeka
Neeka Le Mort was a character played by actress Nell Shipman in the film The Girl from God’s Country (1921).

  • Usage of the baby name Neeka.

Neely
Neely was a character played by actress Duane Thompson in the film One Hour of Love (1927).

  • Usage of the baby name Neely.

Neenah
Neenah was a character played by actress Kathleen Key in the film The Man from Brodney’s (1923).

  • Usage of the baby name Neenah.

Neepah
Neepah was a character played by actress Eugenie Besserer in the short film The Last of Her Tribe (1912).

Neeta
Neeta was a character name in multiple films, including Temptation and the Girl (short, 1917) and The Third Alarm (1930).

  • Usage of the baby name Neeta.

Neewah
Neewah was a character played by actress Neola May in the serial film Perils of the Yukon (1922).

Neila
Neila was a character name in multiple films, including A Soul for Sale (1918) and East of Borneo (1931).

  • Usage of the baby name Neila.

Neleta
Neleta was a character played by actress Steffi Duna in the film Anthony Adverse (1936).

Nelga
Nelga Petrona was a character played by actress Julia Swayne Gordon in the short film The Tigress (1915).

Nell
Nell Craig was an actress who appeared in films from the 1910s to the 1940s. She was born in New Jersey in 1891. Nell Shipman was an actress who appeared in films from the 1910s to the 1920s. She was born in Canada in 1892. Her birth name was Helen Foster-Barham. Nell was also a character name in multiple films, including The Reward of Thrift (short, 1914) and Nell Gwyn (1926).

  • Usage of the baby name Nell.

Nenette
Nenette Bisson was a character played by actress Carmel Myers in the film A Broadway Scandal (1918).

Nennah
Nennah was a character played by actress Ynez Seabury in the film The Calgary Stampede (1925).

Neola
Neola May was an actress who appeared in films from the 1910s to the 1930s. She was born in California in 1891. Neola was also a character played by actress Betty Schade in the short film Olana of the South Seas (1914).

  • Usage of the baby name Neola.

Nepeese
Nepeese was a character played by actress Nell Shipman in the film Baree, Son of Kazan (1918).

Nepthys
Nepthys was a character played by actress Jane Urban in the film The Last Egyptian (1914).

Neptuna
Neptuna was a character played by actress Bessie Eyton in the short film When His Ship Came In (1914).

Nerada
Nerada was a character played by actress Florence Lawrence in the short film The Slave (1909).

Nerée
Nerée Caron was a character played by actress Alma Rubens in the film A Woman’s Faith (1925).

Nesta
Nesta Pett was a character played by actress Cora Witherspoon in the film Piccadilly Jim (1936).

  • Usage of the baby name Nesta.

Netta
Netta Westcott was an actress who appeared in films from the 1910s to the 1940s. She was born in England in 1893. Netta was also a character played by actress Linda Darnell in the film Hangover Square (1945).

  • Usage of the baby name Netta.

Nettie
Nettie was a character name in multiple films, including Java Head (1923) and On Again-Off Again (1937).

  • Usage of the baby name Nettie.

Neyneen
Neyneen Farrell was an actress who appeared in films in the 1920s. She was born in the Netherlands in 1898.

Neysa
Neysa von Igel was a character played by actress Louise Glaum in the film An Alien Enemy (1918).

  • Usage of the baby name Neysa.

Niagara
Niagara was a character played by actress Louise Beavers in the film Du Barry Was a Lady (1943).

Nichette
Nichette was a character played by actress Patsy Ruth Miller in the film Camille (1921) and by Elizabeth Allan in Camille (1936).

Ninette
Ninette Cavallar was a character played by actress Shirley Mason in the film Don Juan’s 3 Nights (1926).

Nini
Nini Theilade was an actress who appeared in films in the 1930s. She was born in Indonesia in 1915. Nini was also a character played by actress Barbara Bedford in the film Gleam O’Dawn (1922).

  • Usage of the baby name Nini.

Ninotchka
Ninotchka was a character played by actress Greta Garbo in the film Ninotchka (1939).

Niobe
Niobe was a character played by actress Hazel Dawn in the film Niobe (1915).

  • Usage of the baby name Niobe.

Nirvena
Nirvena was a character played by actress Stephanie Bachelor in the film Lady of Burlesque (1943).

Nista
Nista was a character played by actress Caroline Frances Cooke in the film The Devil Bear (1929).

Nita
Nita Naldi was an actress who appeared in films in the 1920s. She was born in New York in 1894. Her birth name was Mary Nonna Dooley. Nita was also a character name in multiple films, including Jane Goes A’ Wooing (1919) and Two Gun Sheriff (1941).

  • Usage of the baby name Nita.

Nitra
Nitra was a character played by actress Eve Whitney in the film Radar Patrol vs. Spy King (1949).

  • Usage of the baby name Nitra.

Nitta
Nitta Moseby was a character played by actress Jean Rouverol in the film The Law West of Tombstone (1938).

Nokomis
Nokomis was a character played by actress Lillian Leighton in the film Witchcraft (1916).

  • Usage of the baby name Nokomis (which debuted in the data the year Witchcraft came out).

Nona
Nona was a character name in multiple films, including If Winter Comes (1923) and Law of the Jungle (1942).

  • Usage of the baby name Nona.

Nonette
Nonette was a character played by actress Peggy Parr in the film Sylvia on a Spree (1918).

Nootka
Nootka was a character played by actress Laska Winter in the film Justice of the Far North (1925).

Norene
Norene McMann was a character played by actress Loretta Young in the film Three Girls Lost (1931).

  • Usage of the baby name Norene.

Noretta
Noretta was a character played by actress Pina Menichelli in the film The Banker (1913).

Norina
Norina was a character played by actress Myrna Dell in the film The Lost Tribe (1949).

  • Usage of the baby name Norina.

Normallee
Normallee was a character played by actress Clara Kimball Young in the short film The Spirit of the Orient (1913).

Notanah
Notanah was a character played by actress Kitty Stevens in the film Peer Gynt (1915).

Notawa
Notawa was a character played by actress Lillian Leighton in the film The Girl from God’s Country (1921).

Nourmalle
Nourmalle was a character played by actress Bessie Eyton in the short film The Cherry Pickers (1914).

Nuanta
Nuanta was a character played by actress Betty Schade in the short film The Call for Help (1917).

Nuanua
Nuanua was a character played by actress Florence Turner in the film Passion Fruit (1921).

Nubi
Nubi was a character played by actress Myrna Loy in the film The Squall (1929).

Nume
Nume Rogers was a character played by actress Florence Vidor in the film The Bravest Way (1918).

Nupondi
Nupondi was a character played by actress Mamo Clark in the film One Million B.C. (1940).

Nydia
Nydia Westman was an actress who appeared in films from the 1930s to the 1970s. She was born in New York in 1902

  • Usage of the baby name Nydia.

Nydra
Nydra was a character played by actress Rita La Roy in the film The Delightful Rogue (1929).

  • Usage of the baby name Nydra.

Nyoka
Nyoka was a character played by actress Frances Gifford in the film Jungle Girl (serial, 1941) and by Kay Aldridge in Perils of Nyoka (1942).

  • Usage of the baby name Nyoka (which debuted in the data the year Jungle Girl came out).

Nyra
Nyra Seaton was a character played by actress Kathleen Vaughan in the film Corinthian Jack (1921).

  • Usage of the baby name Nyra.

*

…Which of the above names do you like best?

Source: IMDb

The Double-Spike Baby Name Norita

baby name norita - graph
Usage of the baby name Norita spiked in ’35 and ’37.
Something unusual happened to the baby name Norita in the 1930s:

  • 1939: 34 baby girls named Norita
  • 1938: 47 baby girls named Norita
  • 1937: 155 baby girls named Norita
  • 1936: 19 baby girls named Norita
  • 1935: 89 baby girls named Norita
  • 1934: 7 baby girls named Norita
  • 1933: 6 baby girls named Norita

See how it spiked twice? Interesting, isn’t it?

A double-spike requires a double-explanation, and one of those explanations I’ve figured out. The other I’m still working on.

Norita’s 1935 Spike

Norita’s first spike can be traced back to a contest, believe it or not. Contests were all the rage in the mid-1930s according to Newsweek:

Almost every week, radio stations and newspapers announce new contests. Prizes of money, automobiles, and round-the-world trips incite listeners and readers to send in slogans and 50-word essays written on soap wrappers and cigar bands.

This particular contest, sponsored by Gold Medal Flour, was woven into the storyline of an old time radio show called “Betty and Bob.” After characters Betty and Bob Drake found a orphaned baby girl at their doorstep on Christmas Eve of 1934, they asked their audience to help choose a name for her.

Gold Medal Flour magazine advertisements from early 1935 gave detailed descriptions of the baby — “golden hair,” “blue eyes,” “happy disposition” — and hints on picking a name, which they stressed should be “original” and “unique.”

Thousands of cash prizes were offered, including a $10,000 grand prize. Here’s the full list (and what the prizes would be worth in today’s dollars):

  • 1st – $10,000 (equivalent to $170,713.14 in 2013)
  • 2nd – $1,500 ($25,606.97)
  • 3rd – $1,000 ($17,071.31)
  • 4th – $500 ($8,535.66)
  • 5th – $250 ($4,267.83)
  • 6th – $200 ($3,414.26)
  • 7th – $150 ($2,560.70)
  • 8th – $100 ($1,707.13)
  • 9th – $75 ($1,280.35)
  • 10th – $25 ($426.78)
  • 11th – $15 ($256.07)
  • 12th – $10 ($170.71)
  • 13th – $7 ($119.50)
  • 14th – $5 ($85.36)
  • 1,000+ other entrants – $1 each ($17.07)

That’s a lot of money, especially when you consider that the nation was still trying to pull itself out of the Great Depression in the mid-1930s.*

Hundreds of thousands of people entered the contest, which ran until mid-February. Some people really went out of their way to catch the attention of the judges:

One woman painstakingly embroidered a pillow with a name on it and could not understand why she got no prize. She even claimed the work had damaged her eyesight. A man sent an 8-foot, electrically-wired lighthouse with the entry-name over its door. A third contestant contributed a huge doll in an expensive bassinet; a nameplate hung on the doll’s neck.

More than 50,000 people suggested the name Goldie (a nod to Gold Medal Flour). Another 57,000 suggested Betty-Jane.

But only Mrs. E. M. Nelson of Minnesota suggested the grand prize-winning name Norita, a name she’d created from an Old English word for “foster child,” norie (also spelled nory, nurry, etc.). The word ultimately comes from Old French nourrir, meaning “nourish.”

The only other prize-winner I know of was a woman named Martha Hunt of Washington state who submitted the name “Adolla” and received $250 (5th place).

According to a newspaper article from 1942, the Gold Medal Flour “Radio’s Nameless Mystery Baby” contest was General Mills’ second-most successful contest ever. Seven years later, the company was still receiving entries.

Norita’s 1937 Spike

The second spike was higher than the first — 155 babies this time, versus 89 in 1935 — but I haven’t been able to pinpoint the cause.

One thing I can tell you about the 1937 spike is that, in contrast to the 1935 spike, it inspired a lot of variant forms:

Name 1934 1935 1936 1937 1938
Norita 7 89 19 155 47
Noretta 8 15 6 65 32
Noreta 7** 5 52 14
Noreda 17**
Norrita 16**
Noreeta 8**
Noreita 8**
Noritta 8**
Norietta 6**
Norreta 6**
Norretta 5**

**First appearance on the SSA’s list.

A sudden increase in variant forms always points me to an audio source — something that has a lot of people hearing a name, but not seeing it written down. This forces people to come up with their own spellings. The Deirdre and Casara spikes were caused by audio sources, for instance.

So the second Norita spike was likely caused either by radio or by a movie. (Television wasn’t widely adopted until well into the 1950s.)

One other thing I can tell you is that the 1937 spike was localized, just like the 1935 spike. In 1935, most of the babies named Norita were born in the Midwest:

  • 12 Noritas in Minnesota (1935)
  • 9 Noritas in Wisconsin (1935)
  • 7 Noritas in Indiana (1935)
  • 6 Noritas in Illinois, Michigan, and Ohio (1935)
  • 5 Noritas in Texas (1935)

The story of a Minnesota woman winning $10,000 by inventing the name “Norita” was probably a lot bigger in this region than elsewhere.

Skipping ahead two years, we see something similar:

  • 17 Noritas in Ohio (1937)
  • 16 Noritas in Pennsylvania (1937)
  • 14 Noritas in California (1937)
  • 11 Noritas in Illinois (1937)
  • 10 Noritas in Texas (1937)
  • 9 Noritas in Indiana and Minnesota (1937)
  • 5 Noritas in Michigan, Oregon, and West Virginia (1937)

The localization isn’t quite as strong, but over 20% of the 1937 Noritas were born in Ohio and Pennsylvania, which is notable.

Thoughts?

My best guess is that the second spike is related to the “Betty and Bob” radio show somehow. Perhaps baby Norita became an on-air character in 1937?

But I have no clue why the name was disproportionately popular in Ohio and Pennsylvania.

Do you have any ideas?

Also: Do you like the name Norita? Would you ever consider using it for a baby?

Sources/Tools:

  • BLS Inflation Calculator
  • “Contest: 57,000 American Listeners Have The Same Idea” Newsweek 11 May 1935: 38.
  • Hughes, Lawrence M. “Advertising news.” New York Sun 13 Feb. 1941: 23.
  • Whitney, William Dwight Whitney and Benjamin Eli Smith. The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia. New York: The Century Co., 1914.
  • “Wins Cash Award for Baby’s Name.” Spokane Daily Chronicle 18 Apr. 1935: 6.

*Did you know some kids were actually named Depression during the Great Depression?

One-Hit Wonder Baby Names from the 1930s

Here’s the next installment of one-hit wonders. The following baby names cracked the top 1,000 only once–all during the 1930s:

Girl Names

Boy Names

  • Darl – ranked 997th in 1931
  • Darwyn – ranked 743rd in 1935
  • Delwin – ranked 970th in 1935
  • Derl – ranked 875th in 1930
  • Harlon – ranked 946th in 1939
  • Marland – ranked 840th in 1934
  • Orlin – ranked 944th in 1932
  • Ronal – ranked 780th in 1939

Want more one-hit wonders? Here are…