I wasn’t planning to post baby name rankings for any individual U.S. state before the release of the SSA’s official national rankings (in May), but Wyoming’s were just too interesting to ignore.
Last year, landlocked Wyoming — the least populous U.S. state — welcomed 6,050 babies. The top names among these babies were Charlotte and Noah, according to Wyoming’s Department of Health.
Here are Wyoming’s top 10 girl names and top 10 boy names of 2022:
- Emma (tie)
- Hazel (tie)
- Eleanor (tie)
- Isabella (tie)
- Nova (tie)
- William (tie)
- Wyatt (tie)
- Benjamin (4-way tie)
- Bridger (4-way tie)
- John (4-way tie)
- Oliver (4-way tie)
Bridger! That’s a name I wasn’t expecting.
According to the SSA’s state-specific data, Bridger’s best showing in Wyoming so far (through 2021) was 20 baby boys in 2016. It ranked 16th state-wide that year.
Bridger is also seeing relatively strong usage in nearby states such as Idaho, North Dakota, and Utah.
I haven’t seen it pop up on any other state-produced set of rankings for 2022, though. It wasn’t among Mississippi’s top 25 boy names of 2022, for instance, or Arizona’s top 100 boy names of 2022 (PDF).
On a national level, Bridger isn’t anywhere near the top 10, but it does regularly rank within the boys’ top 1,000. Interestingly, usage jumped in 2021:
- 2021: 356 baby boys named Bridger [rank: 721st]
- 2020: 239 baby boys named Bridger [rank: 929th]
- 2019: 242 baby boys named Bridger [rank: 901st]
- 2018: 229 baby boys named Bridger [rank: 925th]
Here’s a visual:
I’m not sure what accounts for the sudden increase. The TV series Bridgerton? The Star Wars character Ezra Bridger? (Any ideas?)
What are your thoughts on the name Bridger? Where do you think Bridger ranked nationally in 2022?
Sources: Is Your Name Among Wyoming’s Favorites for New Babies? – Wyoming Department of Health, Wyoming – Wikipedia, SSA
Image by Sharon Kehl Califano from Pixabay
7 thoughts on “Popular baby names in Wyoming, 2022”
In 2020 and 2021 there was a Wyoming boy named Bridger Walker in the news who saved his sister from a dog attack, so I’m guessing that’s it. https://www.wyomingnews.com/rawlinstimes/news/boys-heroism-in-saving-sister-not-forgotten/article_a9e7cd79-2203-5a5c-95b4-041f4ad7e7e1.html
I am 90% sure that Bridger is popular in those Rocky Mountain states because of the Bridger Mountain Range. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bridger_Range
There’s a popular ski resort near Bozeman, Montana called Bridger Bowl. Source: I lived in Montana from 1993-1999, and had many friends who were skiers and snowboarders.
I’ve always thought Bridger was more popular in that region thanks to Jim Bridger (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jim_Bridger), the 19th-century explorer and “mountain man.” Someone did apparently portray him in The Revenant (2015).
Bridger is a Mormon name, isn’t it?
I imagine that Bridger comes more likely from the town of Bridger, WY, which I believe is named after the famous frontiersman Jim Bridger. I can’t think the tv show Bridgerton would be much of an influence – if it was, it’d be showing up in other states, especially states with a population more likely to watch such a show. If the city name is the main influence, don’t know why suddenly it’s become a name. But didn’t Cody suddenly become popular in the 1990’s? And it also was a “Western” name shared with a Wyoming city, and then the name’s popularity just spread.
I’m in California and have never met a Paisley. I love the name and it is not in California’s Top 100 for 2021, so I was surprised to see it at #7 on this list! I checked other states to see if anyone else had it in their Top 10 for 2021.
West Virginia # 3
Mississippi # 4
Arkansas # 6
Idaho # 10
Curious to see its rise since it was only # 40 in Wyoming in 2021. (Nova was #39 and Hazel # 70 and now they’re in the Top Ten!)
Thank you for all the responses/thoughts regarding Bridger! (I have a lot of research to do over the weekend now…)