Where did the baby name Troas come from in 1969?

Beauty queen Troas Hayes in 1968
Troas Hayes (in 1968)

The intriguing name Troas was a one-hit wonder in the baby name data, appearing in 1969 only:

  • 1971: unlisted
  • 1970: unlisted
  • 1969: 5 baby girls named Troas [debut]
  • 1968: unlisted
  • 1967: unlisted

The source?

Troas Hayes, a young woman from California. She won the Miss California contest in June of 1968 and went on to represent the state at the Miss USA contest in Miami Beach in May of 1969. She didn’t win, but did come in 4th runner-up.

Where did her unique name come from?

Contemporary sources stated that her father’s name was Walter Hayes, but research reveals that he was actually her step-father. Her biological father was named Virgil Troas Hoffmeister. (He died when Troas was a baby.) I don’t know the story behind Virgil’s name, but both of his given names have classical roots — Virgil being an ancient Roman poet, and Troas being an ancient region in what is now Turkey.

What are your thoughts on Troas as a girl name?

P.S. The 1969 Miss USA contestant from Alabama also had an interesting name: Hitsy Parnell. “Hitsy” was a nickname; her real first name was Wilhelmina.

Sources:

Image: © 1968 Sacramento Bee (from the Center for Sacramento History)

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