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

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Popularity of the Baby Name Willa


Posts that Mention the Name Willa

Pop Culture Baby Name Game Results, 2020

Which of the names in the 2020 pop culture baby name game saw higher usage last year?

The following names increased in usage from 2019 to 2020. They’re ordered by relative size of increase.

NameActionIncrease’19 to ’20 usageSugg. by
Dalettdebuted2,250%, at least? to 94 baby girlsalex
Ehlaniincreased2,100%5 to 110 baby girlsalex
Alessiincreased418%11 to 57 baby girlsLeah
Gianninaincreased400%5 to 25 baby girlsalex
Breonnaincreased211%9 to 28 baby girls
Kobeincreased199%502 to 1,500 baby boys
Aalamre-emerged175%, at least? to 11 baby boys
Raddixdebuted150%, at least? to 10 baby boys
Azulaincreased142%26 to 63 baby girls
Avaniincreased133%101 to 235 baby girlsalex
Giannaincreased129%3,412 to 7,826 baby girls
Ahmaudincreased100%12 to 24 baby boys
Catoriincreased85%13 to 24 baby girlsalex
Doveincreased70%30 to 51 baby girlsKM & Leah
Rueincreased68%41 to 69 baby girls
Zaiaincreased60%35 to 56 baby girlsalex
Mykaincreased57%53 to 83 baby girlsalex
Kataraincreased54%41 to 63 baby girls
Chadwickincreased50%20 to 30
Rellre-emerged50%, at least? to 6 baby girlsLeah
Zukoincreased47%15 to 22 baby boys
Bryantincreased46%271 to 395 baby boys
Tenilleincreased40%5 to 7 baby girlsEmily A
Nayaincreased39%256 to 356 baby girlsalex
Kamalaincreased38%13 to 18 baby girls
Onyxincreased38%321 to 442 baby boys
Steelincreased31%35 to 46 baby boysalex
Joseyincreased31%16 to 21 baby boysalex
Duaincreased29%72 to 93 baby girls
Radleyincreased28%53 to 68 baby boysalex
Charliincreased24%594 to 735 baby girls
Lyraincreased24%431 to 534 baby girls
Kamiyahincreased23%333 to 409 baby girls
Sovereignincreased23%13 to 16 baby girlsalex
Shaiincreased22%98 to 120 baby boysLeah
Yaraincreased21%362 to 439 baby girls
Dorotheaincreased21%47 to 57 baby girlsRandi & KM
Bettyincreased20%161 to 194 baby girlsRandi
Riverincreased17%2,361 to 2,771 baby boys
Estyincreased16%58 to 67 baby girls
Sakaiincreased14%21 to 24 baby boysalex
Creedincreased12%257 to 288 baby boysalex & Leah
Lovellaincreased11%18 to 20 baby girls
Huxleyincreased10%469 to 518 baby boysalex
Daisyincreased9%1,729 to 1,877 baby girls
Isaiasincreased8%580 to 625 baby boys
Adonisincreased8%1,539 to 1,663 baby boysalex
Amalaincreased5%20 to 21 baby girls
Ivyincreased3%3,675 to 3,794 baby girlsRandi
Zealandincreased3%30 to 31 baby boysalex
Milanincreased3%
13%
662 to 683 baby boys
397 to 449 baby girls
alex
Marjorieincreased2%203 to 208 baby girlsRandi
Augustincreased1%2,376 to 2,403 baby boysEmily A

The following names did not increase in usage from 2019 to 2020. These names saw equal usage, less usage, or weren’t in the data at all.

Ammika, Anaia, Casme, Corona, Crozier, Desz, Divinity, Doja, Domhnall, Estee, George, Gervonta, Giveon, Greta, Hamilton, Ice, Jack, James, Kaori, King, Kraken, Larriah, Laura, Lenin, Liberty, Lynika, McGivney, Nakova, Neowise, Raditz, Rayshard, Robinette, Rona, Rumble, Ruth, Saphir, Slash, Tacoda, Tchalla, Theodosia, Tianwen, Wednesday, Wenliang, Willa, Willow, Win, Zaya

And here are the late bloomers — names that were part of the 2019 game, but didn’t rise/debut until 2020.

  • Donna increased by 20%.
  • Nipsey debuted with 7 baby boys.
  • Luce returned to the data with 7 baby girls.
  • Maleficent returned to the data with 5 baby girls.
  • Miren returned to the data with 5 baby girls.

Finally, regarding our theories about how Covid might have affected 2020’s names…I didn’t notice anything definitive. For instance, both Gheba and Skizzo mentioned “prestige” names (e.g., King, Legend, Major, Messiah and Royal). What I found was that some went up, some went down. Same with the modern virtue names (e.g., Courage, Honor, Brave, Bravery, Freedom).

What are your thoughts on these results? Which name surprised you the most?

[Disclaimer: Some of the names above were already moving in the direction indicated. Others were influenced by more than a single pop culture person/event. In all cases, I leave it up to you to judge the degree/nature of pop culture influence.]

Top First Letters of U.S. Baby Names, 2020

Wondering which first letters were the most popular in 2020?

For baby girls, the most-used first letter was A, followed by E and M. The least-used first letter was U. More than 272,000 baby girls got an A-name last year, whereas fewer than 700 got a U-name.

Top first letters of female baby names in the U.S. in 2020.

The three most-used girl names per letter last year were…

  • A: Ava, Amelia, Abigail
  • B: Brooklyn, Bella, Brielle
  • C: Charlotte, Camila, Chloe
  • D: Delilah, Daisy, Daniela
  • E: Emma, Evelyn, Ella
  • F: Faith, Freya, Finley
  • G: Gianna, Grace, Genesis
  • H: Harper, Hazel, Hannah
  • I: Isabella, Isla, Ivy
  • J: Josephine, Jade, Julia
  • K: Kinsley, Kennedy, Kaylee
  • L: Luna, Layla, Lily
  • M: Mia, Mila, Madison
  • N: Nora, Nova, Natalie
  • O: Olivia, Olive, Oakley
  • P: Penelope, Paisley, Piper
  • Q: Quinn, Queen, Quincy
  • R: Riley, Ruby, Rylee
  • S: Sophia, Sofia, Scarlett
  • T: Taylor, Teagan, Trinity
  • U: Unique, Uma, Una
  • V: Victoria, Violet, Valentina
  • W: Willow, Winter, Willa
  • X: Ximena, Xiomara, Xena
  • Y: Yaretzi, Yara, Yareli
  • Z: Zoey, Zoe, Zara

For baby boys, the most-used first letter was J, followed by A and L. The least-used first letter was, again, U. More than 205,000 baby boys got a J-name last year, whereas fewer than 2,500 got a U-name.

Top first letters of male baby names in the U.S. in 2020.

The three most-used boy names per letter last year were…

  • A: Alexander, Aiden, Asher
  • B: Benjamin, Brooks, Bennett
  • C: Carter, Charles, Christopher
  • D: Daniel, David, Dylan
  • E: Elijah, Ethan, Ezra
  • F: Finn, Felix, Francisco
  • G: Grayson, Gabriel, Greyson
  • H: Henry, Hudson, Hunter
  • I: Isaac, Isaiah, Ian
  • J: James, Jacob, Jackson
  • K: Kai, Kayden, Kingston
  • L: Liam, Lucas, Logan
  • M: Mason, Michael, Mateo
  • N: Noah, Nathan, Nolan
  • O: Oliver, Owen, Oscar
  • P: Parker, Patrick, Peter
  • Q: Quinn, Quentin, Quincy
  • R: Ryan, Roman, Robert
  • S: Sebastian, Samuel, Santiago
  • T: Theodore, Thomas, Tyler
  • U: Uriel, Uriah, Ulises
  • V: Vincent, Victor, Valentino
  • W: William, Wyatt, Wesley
  • X: Xavier, Xander, Xzavier
  • Y: Yusuf, Yosef, Yehuda
  • Z: Zachary, Zion, Zayden

Finally, here are the totals for girls and boys side-by-side on the same chart:

Top first letters of baby names in the U.S. in 2020.

Overall, the top first letter was A and the least popular first letter was (of course!) U.

Pop Culture Baby Name Game, 2020

Happy birthday, Elvis!

It’s hard to put into words just how bizarre 2020 was.

Despite this…people still had babies in 2020, and people still paid attention to pop culture in 2020. (In fact, thanks to quarantine, many people probably paid a lot more attention to pop culture than usual last year.) So, let’s put the seriousness of 2020 aside for a second and kick off the annual Pop Culture Baby Name Game!

Of course, “pop culture” includes not just things like movies and music and social media, but also anything that was in the news — including COVID-19, Black Lives Matter, and the U.S. presidential election.

Which baby names will see higher usage — or appear for the very first time — in the 2020 SSA baby name data thanks to pop culture?

Here are some initial ideas (plus some context):

  • Aalam, DJ Khaled’s baby
  • Ahmaud, shooting of Ahmaud Arbery
  • Amala, Doja Cat album
  • Azula, character from Avatar: The Last Airbender (made available on Netflix in mid-2020)
  • Breonna, shooting of Breonna Taylor
  • Bryant, death of Kobe Bryant
  • Casme, contestant on season 19 of The Voice
  • Catori, Chris Brown’s baby (suggested by alex)
  • Chadwick, death of Chadwick Boseman
  • Charli, singer Charli XCX
  • Corona, coronavirus
    • Not to mention the brand new Daddy Yankee song “Corona” [vid]…
  • Crozier, naval captain Brett Crozier (suggested by elbowin)
  • Daisy, Katy Perry and Orlando Bloom’s baby
  • Desz, contestant on season 19 of The Voice
  • Doja, singer Doja Cat
  • Domhnall, Irish actor on (canceled) HBO series Run
  • Dua, singer Dua Lipa
  • Esty, character on the Netflix miniseries Unorthodox
  • George, killing of George Floyd
  • Gianna, death of Gianna Bryant
  • Greta, Swedish activist Greta Thunberg
  • Isaias, hurricane
  • Jack, death of Chrissy Teigen and John Legend’s unborn baby
  • Kamala, Vice President-elect Kamala Harris
  • Kamiyah, character in the Lifetime movie Stolen by My Mother: The Kamiyah Mobley Story*
  • Kaori, Kevin Hart’s baby
  • Katara, character from Avatar: The Last Airbender
  • Kobe, death of Kobe Bryant
  • Kraken, NHL expansion team (Seattle)
  • Larriah, contestant on season 19 of The Voice
  • Laura, hurricane
  • Lenin, Starbucks barista Lenin Gutierrez (suggested by elbowin)
  • Liberty, Meghan McCain’s baby
  • Lovella, singer Matt Bellamy’s baby
  • Lynika, death of Lynika Strozier (suggested by elbowin)
  • Lyra, Ed Sheeran’s baby
  • McGivney, beatification of Fr. Michael McGivney
  • Neowise, comet (suggested by elbowin)
  • Onyx, Iggy Azalea’s baby
  • Raddix, Cameron Diaz and Benji Madden’s baby
  • Rayshard, shooting of Rayshard Brooks
  • River, Joaquin Phoenix and Rooney Mara’s baby
  • Robinette, President-elect Joseph Robinette Biden (suggested by elbowin)
  • Rona, coronavirus
  • Rue, Teyana Taylor and Iman Shumpert’s baby
  • Rumble, model Lucky Blue Smith’s baby
  • Ruth, death of RBG
  • Sovereign, Usher’s baby
  • Tchalla, death of Chadwick Boseman (who played T’Challa in 2018’s Black Panther)
  • Wenliang, Chinese doctor Li Wenliang (suggested by elbowin)
  • Willa, Joe Jonas and Sophie Turner’s baby
  • Win, Ciara and Russell Wilson’s baby
  • Yara, actress Yara Shahidi
  • Zuko, character from Avatar: The Last Airbender (here’s one Zuko from 2020)

Some of the names from the 2019 game could be applicable to the 2020 data as well.

Also, feel free to zoom out and consider name trends this year. Here are a few ways in which baby-naming may have been influenced by our collective experience of COVID-19, for instance:

  • “In my opinion this unprecedented situation will affect naming towards something “bolder” or “more badass” baby names and so you’ll probably see a spike of certain names like King, Major or Royal.” (Gheba)
  • “I’d bet on the rise of virtue names, or at least modern version of virtue names, like Brave/Bravery, Courage, Honor, etc. And I’d say names like Legend, Messiah, Legacy, Major, King, will probably rise some more too.” (Skizzo)
  • “I think it will also affect which media influence names this year. Eg we’ll miss out on names inspired by Olympic athletes, but might see even more from Netflix and YouTube.” (Clare)

What other names (or name trends) should we add to the list? Let me know by leaving a comment below. Just remember to make a note of the pop culture influence!

I’ll post the results as soon as I can after the SSA releases the 2020 data (in May of 2021, hopefully).

*Did you know that the actress who played Kamiyah in that Lifetime movie is named Rayven Symone Ferrell? Certainly a nod to Raven-Symoné

Popular Baby Names in NWT, 2019

According to Cabin Radio, the most popular* baby names in the Canadian territory of Northwest Territories in 2019 were Zoey and Elias/John/Joseph/Michael (4-way tie).

Here are Northwest Territories’ top girl names and top boy names of 2019:

Girl Names

  1. Zoey (4 girls)
  2. Emily, Hazel, Kinsley, Lily (3 girls each)
  3. Adeline, Alexandra, Amelia, Anastasia, Ashley, Aurora, Blair, Edie, Ella, Evelyn, Everly, Helena, Josie, Lexie, Lilah, Madeline, Madison, Miley, Myla, Nevaeh, Neve, Ruby, Ruth, Sadie, Serenity, Sofia, Sophie, Victoria, Willa (2 girls each)

Boy Names

  1. Elias, John, Joseph, Michael (3 boys each)
  2. Aiden, Benjamin, Bodhi, Carter, Charles, David, Dominic, Dylan, Edward, Elliott, Felix, Hudson, Iverson, Jack, Jeremiah, Jimmy, Jonah, Joshua, Lennox, Levi, Mackenzie, Maverick, Nate, Nathan, Nicholas, Noah, Riel, Theo, Timothy, Walker, Wesley (2 boys each)

In 2018, the top names in NWT were Carter, John, Olivia, and Peyton (with 4 babies each). In 2015, the top names were Abigail and Liam. And in 2020, the very first baby born in NWT was named Axel.

Sources: Zoey is the NWT’s most popular baby name of 2019, The NWT’s top baby names of 2018

*These rankings only cover NWT births through early December.

N. Dakota Towns with Female Names

Here’s a newspaper article from the 1930s that features a list of North Dakota towns with feminine names:

When a train conductor calls “Bessie” and “Josephine” in North Dakota he is not addressing passengers by their first names.

For these and other feminine names were given to towns and villages by rugged pioneers.

Prominent among the list is the cow town of Medora in Billings county, known as the ranching headquarters of Theodore Roosevelt.

Others are: Ines, Norma, Olga, Christine, Silvia, Hannah, Frances, Janet, Stella, Willa, Ella, Mary, Flora, Marion, Alice, Elizabeth, Sophia, Beulah, Kathryn, Jessie, Luverne, Juanita, Freda, Cherry and Mona.

(Only Ella is among the top 10 baby girl names in the state right now.)

Which of the above names do you like best?

Source: “Dakota Pioneers Gave Towns Feminine Names.” Miami Daily News-Record [Miami, OK] 2 Feb. 1936: 8.