How popular is the baby name Paul in the United States right now? How popular was it historically? Find out using the graph below! Plus, see baby names similar to Paul and check out all the blog posts that mention the name Paul.
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In early 1898, the St. Landry Clarion (and other newspapers) ran the following story about a baby boy who has named after the train on which he was born:
When the St. Paul train No. 4, the through Omaha and Chicago express, rolled into the Union depot at Chicago the other day it brought one passenger who had neither ticket nor pass and who had not boarded the train at any station. The extra passenger was a baby boy, the child of Mr. and Mrs. George Morrow, born on the train near Elgin. The young couple came from Nora Springs, Ia., and were on their way to visit relatives in Chicago. They were passengers in the day coach, but the young woman was given the drawing room in the sleeper and a doctor telegraphed ahead for. He got on at Kirkland and came on to Chicago with the young mother. When the station was reached the coach was switched in a side track and later mother and boy were taken to the home of friends. The child has been named St. Paul.
Do you like that they went with “St. Paul,” or do you think they should have gone with “Paul” by itself?
Clint was already seeing moderate usage in the early ’50s, but usage increased considerably in mid-1950s:
1959: 482 baby boys named Clint (rank: 357th)
1958: 474 baby boys named Clint (350th)
1957: 398 baby boys named Clint (385th)
1956: 258 baby boys named Clint (469th)
1955: 115 baby boys named Clint (682nd)
1954: 81 baby boys named Clint (803rd)
1953: 106 baby boys named Clint (693rd)
1952: 84 baby boys named Clint (767th)
1951: 79 baby boys named Clint (793rd)
1950: 60 baby boys named Clint (886th)
The reason for the rise? My money’s on Clint Walker, the actor who played the part of Cheyenne Bodie in the successful TV Western Cheyenne (1955-1963), which happened to be TV’s first hour-long Western.
Cheyenne Bodie was “a former frontier scout who drifts through the old West, traveling without any particular motivation from one adventure to another.”
The series was held together not so much by its premise as by its charismatic star, Clint Walker, who rose from obscurity to become one of the icons of the TV western. With his powerful physique and towering height, Walker commanded the small screen through sheer presence; his performance gained gravity simply from the way his body dominated the screen.
According to the Nielsen ratings, Cheyenne was a top-20 series for three seasons straight (1957-1958, 1958-1959, and 1959-1960).
The show also boosted the male usage of Cheyenne during the second half of the 1950s and through most of the 1960s.
But I should mention that Clint Walker and Cheyenne are only part of the story, as several other gun-slinging Clints also emerged around this time:
Clint Tollinger, a character played by Robert Mitchum in the movie Man with the Gun (1955).
Clint Reno, a character played by Elvis Presley in the movie Love Me Tender (1956).
Clint Travis, a character played by and Paul “Kelo” Henderson in the TV series 26 Men (1957-1959).
There was also a non-gun-slinging teenager named Clint in the short Micky Mouse Club serial The Adventures of Clint and Mac (most episodes aired in January of 1958).
The rise of Clint didn’t continue into the ’60s, despite a continued Clint presence in pop culture:
Clint Eastwood, the actor who played Rowdy Yates on the TV series Rawhide (1959-1966).
Clint McCoy, a character played by Rory Calhoun in the movie Young Fury (1965).
But usage picked back up in the ’70s. Clint saw peak popularity in 1980. These days, usage is roughly back down to pre-Cheyenne levels.
Do you like the name Clint? Would you use it for your baby boy?
From the 1920s to the 1940s, brothers Paul Glee Waner (1903-1965) and Lloyd James Waner (1906-1982) played major league baseball, primarily for the Pittsburgh Pirates.
Many Pirates fans of the era named their kids after either Paul or Lloyd, and some named their kids after both Paul and Lloyd. In January of 1940, for instance, Jack and Dorothy Munyon of Pittsburgh named their son Paul Lloyd Munyon. A couple of years earlier, a St. Louis mother named her twin boys Paul Glee Kraatz and Lloyd James Kraatz. (From the article: “The Waners have had baseball teams, cats, dogs, chickens, pigs, hogs, race horses and now even twins named after them.”)
Where did Paul Glee Waner get his gleeful-sounding middle name? One source claimed he was born Paul John Waner, but his middle name was changed at the age of six after he received a shotgun from his curiously named Uncle Glee.
Greek singer Kitza Kazacos. During the ’50s she became famous in England, and at the end of the decade she decided to try her luck with American audiences.
As the mononymous “Kitza” she appeared (along with Paul Anka) on the Perry Como Show in February of 1959. The press coverage leading up to the appearance was a bit weird, focusing on how she maintained her figure with the help of a hypnotist (“who hypnotizes her into disliking foods that make her gain weight”).
Ultimately, Kitza didn’t have much luck getting attention in the U.S. Here’s what she said later the same year:
“Since the Perry Como show, I have made just one other appearance and that was on daytime show ‘The Jimmy Dean Show.’ They say they want fresh new talent here, but when fresh, new talent comes to them, they say, “The public doesn’t know you.””
I’m not sure what became of Kitza Kazacos, but I can tell you that her first name is a variant of Kitsa, which is a nickname for Kyriaki. Kyriaki is both the Greek word for Sunday and the feminine form of the name Kyriakos, which means “of the lord.” (The Latin equivalent of Kyriakos is Dominicus, the root names like of Dominic and Dominique.)
What do you think of the name Kitza?
Source: Torre, Marie. “New Face Gets Second Look.” Lawrence Journal-World 15 Jun. 1959: 4.