The song “Carrie Anne” by the British band The Hollies came out in May of 1967. It had been written by band member Graham Nash about singer Marianne Faithfull, but Graham was too shy to use Marianne’s real name in the lyrics, so “Carrie Anne” was substituted. The song peaked at #9 on Billboard‘s Hot 100 chart a few months later, in August.
The same year, various versions of the name debuted in the U.S. baby name data. It wasn’t until the next year, though, that the spelling Carrie Anne finally showed up:
Here’s the band performing the song in 1969. (Graham Nash had moved on to Crosby, Stills & Nash by this point, so he’s not part of the performance.)
Similar names featuring “Kerry,” like Kerrianne, also saw higher usage in the late ’60s. Three of these Kerry-variants (Kerryanne, Kerianne, & Keriann) debuted in ’68.
One non-U.S baby who was named Carrie Anne in 1967 was Canadian actress Carrie-Anne Moss, who went on to star in The Matrix as Trinity — the character that popularized the baby name Trinity impressively during the early 2000s.
The song was also one of the factors behind the swift rise of the name Carrie during the 1970s:
1972: 5422 baby girls named Carrie
1971: 5976 baby girls named Carrie
1970: 4976 baby girls named Carrie
1969: 3887 baby girls named Carrie
1968: 3978 baby girls named Carrie
1967: 3196 baby girls named Carrie
1966: 2475 baby girls named Carrie
“Carrie Anne” kicked things off, but the rise was later fueled by actress Caroline “Carrie” Snodgress of the film Diary of a Mad Housewife (1970), the Stephen King book Carrie (1974), and the book-based movie Carrie (1976) — which featured Piper Laurie and a young John Travolta.
The baby name Carrie saw peak usage in 1976 and 1977, reaching 28th place in the rankings both years.
Do you like the name Carrie? How about the combo Carrie Anne?
Feminine forms of these names include Carla, Carlota, and Carlotta. Diminutive forms include Carlito and Carlitos.
Variant forms of Caroline include Carolyn, Carolynn, and Carolyne.
The name Carly is also sometimes spelled Carlee, Carley, Carleigh, Carlie, Carli, or Carlei.
Carmelo + Carmen
The name Carmelo was derived from the Marian title “Our Lady of Carmel.” The Biblical place-name Carmel means “garden” in Hebrew.
The name Carmen is a variant form of Carmel that was influenced by the Latin word carmen, meaning “song.”
Other forms of Carmelo include Carmela, Carmello, and Carmella. Carmel itself is also used as a name.
The name Carter comes from the English surname that originally referred to someone who’s occupation was transporting goods by cart or wagon.
The name Cartier — which is closely associated with the French jewelry brand — comes from a French surname that has several possible derivations. In some cases, Cartier is synonymous with Carter (see above). In other cases, it refers to a location.
Carson + Carsyn
The name Carson comes from a Scottish surname of unknown derivation.
Variant spellings of the name include Carsyn, Carsen, Carsin and Carsynn.
The origin of the name Oscar isn’t known for certain. If it comes from Old Irish, it’s made up of elements meaning “deer” and “friend.” (The second element, cara, is the same one the gave rise to the name Cara.) If it comes from Old English, on the other hand, it’s comprised of elements meaning “god” and “spear.”
The name Ricardo is made up of Germanic elements meaning “ruler” and “hardy.”
A variant form of the name is Riccardo. Feminine forms include Ricarda and Riccarda.
Scarlett, Scarlet + Scarlette
The name Scarlett comes from the English surname that originally referred to someone who was employed as the maker or seller of a bright (often red-colored) woolen cloth called scarlet.
It was put on the map by fictional character Scarlett O’Hara in the late 1930s.
The name is also sometimes spelled Scarlet (like the color itself), Scarlette, Scarlotte, or Scarlytt. Modern Hispanic variants include Scarleth, Escarlet, Escarlett, and Escarleth.
(Before we leave this section, I just wanted to note — for all my fellow lefties out there — that both Cara and Carter are typed entirely with the left hand on a standard QWERTY keyboard.)
More names with CAR
So, what other names have CAR in them? Here are some less-common choices. (Most of these come directly from the SSA’s baby name data.)
Some of these names could be considered variants of the more popular CAR names, though it’s hard to tell. For instance, Caralynn — is it a form of Caroline? Is it Cara + Lynn? (Maybe a bit of both?) Others are non-traditional spellings of more common names, such as Karim, Karen, and Cornelia.
Which CAR name do you like most? Let me know in the comments!