Older siblings vote for baby’s name

In early 1965, Marius and Anne Spada of Towaco, New Jersey, welcomed a baby boy — their 16th child. They didn’t give him a name, though. They had their older children vote on his name, pursuant to family tradition.

Of the 15 older children, 13 took part in the election. They were Anselm (19), Marie (18), Lucille (16), James (15), Jennifer (14), Victoria (13), twins Larry and Laurie (12), Patrick (9), Nicholas (8), Annette (7), Teresa (5) and Christopher (4). The two not taking part were Joseph (17) and Marius Jr. (2). Joseph was away on Army duty, and Marius Jr. was considered too young.

The parents had no say in the balloting. “We leave it entirely up to them,” Marius Sr. (44) told the papers. “I used to be able to sway the election, but I guess I’m too old now politically to carry much weight.”

The winning name was Dominick, with 11 votes. Marius Sr. explained that the name was inspired by “a priest, Father Dominick, who’s a friend of the family.” Runners-up were John and Anthony, with 1 vote each.

Source: “‘Decision of Lifetime’ Made by Youngsters.” Spokane Daily Chronicle 20 Jan. 1965: 27.

6 thoughts on “Older siblings vote for baby’s name

  1. Twins Larry & Laurie – ugh! (Did it say if Laurie was a boy or a girl?)

    I find it interesting that Jr. is son #7.

  2. The kids’ genders weren’t mentioned, so I don’t know if Laurie was a boy or a girl.

    Here’s what the article had to say about the belated namesake:

    Spada, 44, has no say in the balloting, which may or may not account for the fact that it wasn’t until the 15th child was born that a son was named after him.

    So perhaps the nature of the naming explains it. :)

  3. for clairification purposes I am Victoria in the article regarding the names of my 15 brothers and sisters when Lawrence and laurie were born there were nine boys and eight girls all the childrens names are namesakes starting with the oldest to youngest are from my grandparents uncles aunts my parents cousins with the twins Lawrence needed a matching sort of name so laurie a girls name was the name not related to our family tree regarding dominic Dominick we also had a uncle and the priest with that name. the priest had been with our famiy since 1943 when mother and father were married in new jersey when the twins arrived in 1953 mother anne marie spade was mrs new jersey with nine children the reasons why she with drew from the mrs America contest hopefully this response will be helpful in answering your curious questions signing off vctoria c spada at spadavictoria@gmail.com

  4. regarding your curious questions I am Victoria c Spada in the article laurie is a girls name the twins needed a decent matching name Dominick was also named after my uncle Dominick ciriello all the children s names are namesakes from oldest to youngest after my grandparents uncles aunts cousins laurie is the only one outside of the family tree mother anne marie spade was mrs new jersey 1953 was followed in the press worldwide on a go forward with Dominick arrival published in 1965 I hope your questions are answered in completion signing off Victoria C Spada

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