How popular is the baby name Hortense in the United States right now? How popular was it historically? Find out using the graph below! Plus, check out all the blog posts that mention the name Hortense.

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Popularity of the Baby Name Hortense


Posts that Mention the Name Hortense

Maine Family with 22 Children

children

Charles and Effie Dickey of Maine married in 1881 and went on to welcome 22 children — 14 girls, 8 boys — from the 1880s until the 1910s.

Here are the names of all the kids:

  1. Emma Mae (b. 1882)
  2. Ada Alice (b. 1883)
  3. Arthur Earness (b. 1884)
  4. Everlena Maude (b. 1885)
  5. Fannie Blossom (b. 1886)
  6. Nina Eudora (b. 1887)
  7. George Elwin (b. 1888)
  8. Fay Edna (b. 1889)
  9. Everett Onward (b. 1890)
  10. Merritt Carnot (b. 1891)
  11. Lema Inez (b. 1894)
  12. Margaret Ellen (b. 1896)
  13. Charles Loring (b. 1897)
  14. Effie Etta (b. 1898)
  15. Mildred Hortense (b. 1900)
  16. Ivan Thomas Nye (b. 1901)
  17. Floyd Merton (b. 1903)
  18. Arline Beatrice (b. 1904)
  19. Theodore Rayden (b. 1906)
  20. Jessie Alberta (b. 1908)
  21. Ila Pearl (b. 1909)
  22. Hilda Bernice (b. 1911)

I think it’s funny that they decided to name two of the children after themselves only after already having a dozen. Maybe they were running out of ideas at that point. :)

Which of the above is your favorite? (I’d have to go with #8’s middle, “Onward.” What an interesting choice.)

Sources: Descendants of 22 siblings plan Maine reunion, Effie Etta Estes Dickey (1866-1950) – Find a Grave

What’s in a Name, Ethyl?

A few weeks ago, on a Facebook post about Ethel and other e-names, Angel Brave left a comment about an Ethyl Corporation promotional booklet from the 1940s. Playing off the fact that Ethyl is a human name as well as a brand name, the booklet was full of names and definitions.

Her comment reminded me that I’d actually seen advertisements for that very booklet in old magazines. In fact, I was able find four full-page examples in Life.

The earliest ad (click to enlarge) featured the names Henry, Valerie, Caesar, and Jason:

Ethyl Corporation advertisement 1942

The next one had Edgar, Conrad, Hortense, and Moses:

Ethyl Corporation advertisement 1943

The third featured Vivian, Maxwell, Brian, and Albert:

Ethyl Corporation advertisement 1943

And the final ad had Clementine, Dexter, Jasper, and Louise:

Ethyl Corporation advertisement 1943

Which of these sets of names do you prefer? Why?

Sources:

  • Advertisement for Ethyl Corporation. Life 19 Oct. 1942: 9.
  • Advertisement for Ethyl Corporation. Life 7 Jun. 1943: 3.
  • Advertisement for Ethyl Corporation. Life 19 Jul. 1943: 1.
  • Advertisement for Ethyl Corporation. Life 30 Aug. 1943: 1.
  • Ethyl Corporation Records – Smithsonian

Vermont family with 23 children

children

In 1872, The Burlington Free Press printed a story about a 98-year-old widow in Vermont who’d given birth to 23 children.

Marie Abert was born in Quebec in 1773 and married her late husband, Francois Peppin, at the age of 17. They left Canada for Vermont in 1838.

It was noticeable, in conversation with the old lady, that while her memory of the names and ages of her elder children was quite distinct, her recollection of the latter ones who have died grew indistinct, after the fifteenth or sixteenth, and the names of four she was unable to give us.

Here are the names of most of her children:

1. Francois
2. Antoine
3. Marie
4. Jean Baptise
5. Pierre
6. Joseph
7. Oliver
8. Pauline (twin)
9. Clemence (twin)
10. Julia
11. Andrew
12. Timothy
13. Hortense
14. Clemence
15. Zoe
16. “After Zoe came four children, two boys and two girls, all of whom died young.”
17. ?
18. ?
19. ?
20. Bruno
21. Paul
22. Seth
23. ? (boy)

Marie and Francois also had at least 99 grandchildren and 98 great-grandchildren.

Which of the 23 names — the ones that are known, anyway — is your favorite?

Source: “A Large Family.” New York Times 6 Jun. 1872.

How They Named the Baby (Poem)

I think it’s time for a poem.

Here’s one from the late 1800s called “How They Named the Baby.” It was first published in humor magazine Judge.

They talked of Medora, Aurora and Flora,
Of Mabel and Marcia and Mildred and May;
Debated the question of Helen, Honora,
Clarissa, Camilla, and Phyllis and Fay.

They thought of Marcella, Estella, and Bella;
Considered Cecilia, Jeanette, and Pauline;
Alicia, Adela, Annette, Arabella,
And Ethel and Eunice, Hortense and Irene.

One liked Theodora, another Leonora;
Some argued for Edith and some for Elaine;
For Madeline, Adeline, Lily and Lora;
And then, after all, they decided on Jane.

Which of the above names do you like most? How about least?