- 1910: unlisted
- 1909: 5 baby boys named Robley
- 1908: 12 baby boys named Robley
- 1907: unlisted
- 1906: unlisted
These raw numbers from the SSA are deceptively low, though, because many people born before 1937 never applied for a Social Security card. The following numbers, from the Social Security Death Index, should be more accurate:
- 1910: 17 people named Robley born
- 1909: 23 people named Robley born
- 1908: 41 people named Robley born
- 1907: 23 people named Robley born
- 1906: 12 people named Robley born
So, why did the name Robley get a boost in 1908?
Because that was the year Rear Admiral Robley Dunglison Evans (1846-1912) commanded the Great White Fleet on the first leg of its voyage around the world.
From December of 1907 to May of 1908, Evans guided the Great White Fleet (16 U.S. Navy battleships, hulls painted white) from Virginia to California via the Strait of Magellan (as the Panama Canal was not open until 1914). Along the way, the Fleet stopped at ports in Trinidad, Brazil, Chile, Peru and Mexico.
In San Francisco, Evans was relieved of command due to ill health. Rear Admiral Charles S. Sperry took over, and the circumnavigation continued until the Fleet was back in Virginia in February of 1909.
Robley Dunglison Evans was named after English physician Robley Dunglison (1798-1869), who had instructed his father in medical school at the University of Virginia.
- Evans, Robley Dunglison. Sailor’s Log: Recollections of Forty Years of Naval Life. New York: D. Appleton and Company, 1901.
- “Fighting Bob” Evans at Fort Fisher