How popular is the baby name Marian 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 Marian.

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Popularity of the Baby Name Marian


Posts that Mention the Name Marian

Baby born at Toosey Hospital, named Toosey

In July of 1954, Mr. and Mrs. A. Maher welcomed the first baby to be born in the new maternity ward at Toosey Memorial Hospital in Longford, Tasmania.

What was the baby girl named?

Sonia Anne Marian Toosey Maher — fourth given name in honor of the hospital.

(The Toosey Memorial Hospital was established in the 1920s with money donated by James Denton Toosey, Jr. Today, the facility is a nursing home.)

Source: “Baby Named after Hospital.” Mercury [Hobart, Tasmania] 6 Jul. 1954: 12.

Popular baby names in Providence, Rhode Island, in 1868

19th-century Providence, Rhode Island
19th-century Providence

Years ago, I discovered three documents with relatively complete lists of births for the city of Providence, Rhode Island, for the years 1866, 1867, and 1868. I’ve already created Providence’s baby name rankings for 1866 and 1867 using the first two documents, and today (finally!) I’ve got the third set of rankings for you.

Let’s start with some stats:

  • 1,762 babies were born in Providence in 1868, by my count. According to the introduction of the document I’m using a source, however, the total number is 1,866. I don’t know how to account for this discrepancy.
  • 1,617 of these babies (791 girls and 826 boys) had names that were known at the time of publication. The other 145 babies got blank spaces. Either their names hadn’t been registered yet, or they hadn’t been named yet, or perhaps these babies died young and never received a name.
  • 284 unique names (143 girl names and 141 boy names) were shared among these 1,617 babies.

And now, on to the names!

Top 5

A quick look at the top 5 girl names and boy names in Providence in 1868:

Top baby girl namesTop baby boy names
1. Mary
2. Catherine
3. Sarah
4. Ellen
5. Margaret
1. John
2. William
3. James
4. Charles
5. George

All Girl Names

  1. Mary, 149 baby girls
  2. Catherine, 39
  3. Sarah, 38
  4. Ellen, 31
  5. Margaret, 28
  6. Elizabeth, 25
  7. Alice, 24
  8. Anna, 20
  9. Ann, 16
  10. Emma, 14
  11. Eliza, 13
  12. Clara & Martha, 11 each (tie)
  13. Hannah & Lucy, 10 each (tie)
  14. Bridget, Grace, Jennie, Julia & Maria, 9 each (5-way tie)
  15. Annie, Florence, Jane, Minnie & Susan, 8 each (5-way tie)
  16. Agnes, Caroline, Cora, Ella & Harriet, 7 each (5-way tie)
  17. Anne, Carrie, Hattie, Ida, Mabel & Nellie, 6 each (6-way tie)
  18. Eva, Joanna, Lydia & Rosanna, 5 each (4-way tie)
  19. Abby, Charlotte, Emily, Jessie, Josephine, Lillian, Lizzie, Louisa, Louise, Marion, Phebe, Rosella & Theresa, 4 each (13-way tie)
  20. Anastasia, Bertha, Edith, Gertrude, Isabella, Nettie, Pearl, Rebecca & Susanna, 3 each (9-way tie)
  21. Ada, Almira, Edna, Fannie, Flora, Frances, Helen, Henrietta, Inez, Laura, Lelia, Lillie, Lottie, Maud, Priscilla & Virginia, 2 each (16-way tie)
  22. Addie, Adelaide, Adelicia, Adeline, Agatha, Allene, Amanda, Amy, Angelica, Antoinette, Arabella, Augusta, Aurelia, B.*, Belle, Bessie, Betsey, Catharine, Celia, Claudia, Della, Eleanor, Eleanora, Estella, Estelle, Esther, Eudavelia, Eulalie, Evelyn, Francenia, Genevieve, Georgia, Honora, Imogene, Jesse, Juliette, Kate, Leonora, Lilla, Lillias, Lorena, Luella, Luetta, Magdalena, Marian, Marietta, Matilda, Mercy, Minerva, Miriam, Myra, Myrtis, Nanoan, Nora, Pauline, Reberta, Rhoda, Roberta, Rosa, Rose, Ruth, Sabrina, Sophia, Stella & Winifred, 1 each (65-way tie)

*What do you think the “B.” might have stood for?

All Boy Names

  1. John, 112 baby boys
  2. William, 68
  3. James, 64
  4. Charles, 52
  5. George, 45
  6. Thomas, 37
  7. Frederick, 25
  8. Henry, 23
  9. Joseph, 22
  10. Edward, 19
  11. Daniel & Patrick, 18 each (tie)
  12. Robert, 17
  13. Frank, 16
  14. Francis, 15
  15. Walter, 13
  16. Michael, 11
  17. Albert, 10
  18. Arthur, 9
  19. Benjamin, Peter & Samuel, 7 each (3-way tie)
  20. Freddie, Harry, Herbert & Stephen, 6 each (4-way tie)
  21. Edwin, Lawrence, Lewis, Martin & Timothy, 5 each (5-way tie)
  22. Bernard, Edmund, Eugene, Louis, Philip & Richard, 4 each (6-way tie)
  23. Alfred, Augustus, Christopher, Eben, Horace, Howard, Hugh, Jeremiah, Matthew & Willard, 3 each (10-way tie)
  24. Abel, Barney, Byron, Dennis, Edgar, Ferdinand, Gilbert, Luke, Max, Nathaniel, Owen, Roger, Solomon & Victor, 2 each (14-way tie)
  25. Alden, Alexis, Allen, Alrick, Amos, Andrew, Ansel, Anson, Archibald, Asa, Ashby, Bartholomew, Calvin, Carlos, Clarence, Clark, Clarke, Clement, Clifford, Collyer, Crolander, Darius, David, Earl, Elisha, Ellis, Eri, Ernest, Erwin, Eusebe, Everett, Felix, Forrest, Foster, Franklin, Fred, Gardner, Jacob, Jason, Jerome, Jireh, Joaneto, Josiah, Jubal, Justin, Lawson, Lodovic, Louis, Lucien, Lyman, Major, Malachi, Manuel, Melbourne, Monroe, Morey, Morris, Myron, Nelson, Nicholas, Olney, Orville, Oscar, Pendleton, Ralph, Reuben, Rolfe, Rowland, Rufus, Simeon, Simon, Steven, Stewart, Theodore, Ulysses*, Volney, Warren, Whiting, Willie & Winchester, 1 each (80-way tie)

*Ulysses was likely named in honor of Ulysses S. Grant, who was elected president in 1868.

Twins

Finally, nineteen sets of twins were born in Providence in 1868. (All of these twin names are accounted for in the rankings above.)

Girl-girl twinsGirl-boy twinsBoy-boy twins
Caroline & Harriet
Lucy & Lydia
Mary & Rosanna
Margaret & Mary
Lizzie & Martha
(blank) & (blank)
Anne & Thomas
Emma & Charles
Florence & William
Hannah & Josiah
Ida & John
Isabella & John
Jennie & Horace
Charles & William
Francis & Robert
George & John
James & John
James & Stephen
(blank) & (blank)

Have any thoughts about these rankings, or about any of the specific names above?

Source: Snow, Edwin M. Alphabetical Lists of the Names of Persons Deceased, Born and Married in the City of Providence. Number three. Providence: Millard & Harker, 1870.

Where did the baby name Ortrude come from?

Ortrude is one of the many girl names tied for top one-hit wonder of 1916.

  • 1918: unlisted
  • 1917: unlisted
  • 1916: 6 baby girls named Ortrude [debut]
  • 1915: unlisted
  • 1914: unlisted

Where did it come from?

A serialized story called Marrying for Money by Mrs. Eva Leonard. It ran in various U.S. newspapers during the first half of 1916.

In the story, Ortrude was a self-centered woman who married a wealthy older man with two adolescent children (Marian and Dudley). Ortrude’s bad behavior did not endear her to anyone in her new family, husband included. By the end of the tale, she’d had an epiphany and changed her ways.

Do you like the name Ortrude? Do you like it more or less than the similar name Gertrude?

The baby names Jubilee and Marian

jubilee, 1975

Within the next few years, it’s very possible that the baby name Jubilee will enter the girls’ top 1,000:

  • 2015: 229 baby girls named Jubilee [rank: 1,117th]
  • 2014: 167 baby girls named Jubilee [rank: 1,382nd]
  • 2013: 156 baby girls named Jubilee [rank: 1,440th]
  • 2012: 160 baby girls named Jubilee [rank: 1,424th]
  • 2011: 104 baby girls named Jubilee [rank: 1,918th]
  • 2010: 94 baby girls named Jubilee [rank: 2,101st]

(The jump in 2012 was thanks to Queen Elizabeth’s Diamond Jubilee — thanks Fiona for reminding me to mention it!)

Though Jubilee is seeing a good amount of birth-certificate usage these days, it only began popping up in the U.S. baby name data relatively recently, in 1975:

  • 1977: 6 baby girls named Jubilee
  • 1976: 8 baby girls named Jubilee
  • 1975: 9 baby girls named Jubilee [debut]
  • 1974: unlisted
  • 1973: unlisted

I don’t think that year is a coincidence; it lines up perfectly with one of the Roman Catholic Church’s more recent jubilee years.

Speaking of special Roman Catholic years…the church has also celebrated a total of two Marian years, the first of which was in 1954. That year, the baby name Marian saw a sharp rise in usage and nearly returned to top 100:

  • 1956: 1,249 baby girls named Marian [232nd]
  • 1955: 1,497 baby girls named Marian [208th]
  • 1954: 4,014 baby girls named Marian [104th]
  • 1953: 1,366 baby girls named Marian [217th]
  • 1952: 1,246 baby girls named Marian [221st]
Baby name Marian, usage in U.S., 1880 to 2019

The other Marian year lasted from mid-1987 to mid-1988 and had no effect on the name.

Which of these two names do you prefer, Jubilee or Marian?

Update, 10/22/2020 – I spoke too soon regarding Jubilee! Turns out peak usage was in 2015-2016 — likely because of the Catholic Church’s “Extraordinary Jubilee of Mercy” that was announced in early 2015 and lasted from late 2015 to late 2016. After that, usage began dropping:

Baby name Jubilee, usage in U.S., 1880 to 2019

Baby name story: Naomi Rose

On the morning of October 2, 2006, a gunman took ten girls (ages 6 to 13) hostage in a one-room Amish schoolhouse in Nickel Mines, Pennsylvania. He shot the girls, killing five and wounding the other five, before committing suicide.

One of the girls who was killed was 7-year-old Naomi Rose Ebersol. Earlier during the incident — before the gunman had ordered the adult women and the boys to leave — Naomi had been comforted by a 22-year-old pregnant woman named Lydia Mae Zook.

[Lydia] reached over and patted the frightened child on the back.

“It’s going to be all right,” she assured the little girl.

On October 10, Lydia gave birth to her baby girl three weeks early. She named the baby Naomi Rose.

(The other little girls who lost their lives were named Anna, Lena, Marian, and Mary.)

Source: Dribben, Melissa. “In Amish survivor’s baby, hope lives “Shattered, but strong”: Woman who escaped death relates her story.” Philadelphia Inquirer 22 Oct. 2006.