Baby name prediction: Trayvon

In 1949, more babies than expected were named Rainelle. Same goes for Natalee in 2005. And Caylee in 2008. And Kyron in 2010.

What ties them all together?

Sad events involving young people. Popularity via tragedy, you could say.

This pattern makes me think we’re about to see quite a spike in the number of babies named Trayvon.

Trayvon Martin, a black teenager from Florida, was shot and killed late last month by a neighborhood watch volunteer. The shooter, who claims he was acting in self-defense, has yet to be arrested.

On March 21, a “Million Hoodie March” was held in New York. (Trayvon was wearing a hoodie the day he was killed.) Over the weekend, more protest rallies were held in other U.S. cities. Still more are being planned for this week.

How will these events affect the baby name Trayvon?

Trayvon has been on the charts since the ’70s. Usage peaked in the mid-’90s. Here’s the most recent data:

  • 2010: 68 baby boys named Trayvon
  • 2009: 73 baby boys named Trayvon
  • 2008: 92 baby boys named Trayvon
  • 2007: 94 baby boys named Trayvon
  • 2006: 101 baby boys named Trayvon

I predict that there will be sizable uptick in the number of Trayvons in 2012.

How sizable?

The number of babies named Natalee, Caylee and Kyron more than doubled the years those respective tragedies took place.

I don’t yet know how many Trayvons were born in 2011 — that data won’t be released until May — but if the number is on par with other recent numbers, I wouldn’t be surprised to see well over 200 baby boys named Trayvon in 2012.

Do you agree? Disagree? Think it’s too early to tell?

Source: Wisniewski, Mary. “Rallies held around country for Trayvon Martin.” Reuters 24 Mar. 2012.

5 thoughts on “Baby name prediction: Trayvon

  1. I’m sure there will be an increase in the number of baby boys named Trayvon. If only every black teen killed got the same amount of widespread media attention…

    This is what happened near my hometown around the same time Trayvon’s story started gaining so much attention:

    Sadly these kinds of things happen every day. It frustrates me that Trayvon has become a household name whereas Jamon and Martin received no more than a brief mention on the local news channel and website.

  2. I’m definitely expecting a boost for Trayvon, which makes sense since its really uncommon, and most people will hear it for the first time.

    I wonder if this case will have any effect on the names George, Tracy and Sybrina. Those are also getting quite a bit of attention. George in a negative way of course, but that doesn’t necessarily mean it won’t get a boost either.

  3. @Emily – I agree. It’s frustrating to see a handful of cases get national attention while all the others are ignored.

    @Skizzo – I also wondered about Sybrina. And I agree that negative attention could indeed give a name a boost (though I can’t think of any real-life examples offhand).

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