How popular is the baby name Stanford 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 Stanford.
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“Everly” is hot…”Beverly” is not. It’s a one-letter difference between fashionable and fusty.
If you’re sensitive to style, you’ll prefer Everly. It fits with today’s trends far better than Beverly does.
But if you’re someone who isn’t concerned about style, or prefers to go against style, then you may not automatically go for Everly. In fact, you may be more attracted to Beverly because it’s the choice that most modern parents would avoid.
If you’ve ever thought about intentionally giving your baby a dated name (like Debbie, Grover, Marcia, or Vernon) for the sake of uniqueness within his/her peer group — if you have no problem sacrificing style for distinctiveness — then this list is for you.
Years ago, the concept of “contrarian” baby names came up in the comments of a post about Lois. Ever since then, creating a collection of uncool/contrarian baby names has been on my to-do list.
Finally, last month, I experimented with various formulas for pulling unstylish baby names out of the SSA dataset. Keeping the great-grandparent rule in mind, I aimed for names that would have been fashionable among the grandparents of today’s babies. The names below are the best results I got.
I didn’t know that Anzac Day existed until a few days ago, when I read about people named Anzac at the blog Waltzing More Than Matilda.
Anzac Day is celebrated in both Australia and New Zealand every April 25.
ANZAC stands for “Australian and New Zealand Army Corps” — the group of soldiers Australia and New Zealand sent to fight in WWI’s Gallipoli Campaign, which began on April 25, 1915.
The campaign failed, but the efforts of these soldiers gave the two fledgling nations a much-needed sense of identity, and pride.
As a baby name, “Anzac” has been used more often as a middle name than as a first name, and it’s given more often to boys than to girls.
Here are some specifics on the usage of Anzac (and Gallipoli, and Dardanelles) courtesy of the National Library of Australia:
In Victoria for instance, in 1915, seven children were given the name Anzac, one with the name Gallipoli and 24 with Dardanelles or a variation. However, 1916 was the boom year with 153 children named ‘Anzac’ before a rapid drop to just five in 1917, three in 1918, four in 1919 and four in 1920.
All other states also recorded the births of Anzacs with South Australia having 95 named children between 30 May 1915 and 25 April 1928. 24 registrations were made in 1915. This nearly doubled to 46 in 1916 but dropped to just two in 1917, eight in 1918, five in 1919 and a trickle of others to just one born on Anzac Day in 1928. In addition one child in South Australia in each of the years 1915, 1916 and 1918 was named Gallipoli whereas the name Dardanella or similar was given to 19, 43, 10 and four in each of the years 1915, 1916, 1917 and 1918 respectively.
Across the ditch in New Zealand there was a similar trend. In 1915 there were nine children named Anzac with two as first names, four with the name of Gallipoli (one as first name) and 38 with the name of Dardanelles, Dardanella or similar. The following year again saw a relative spike in numbers with 97 children now named Anzac (six as first name), four with the name Gallipoli (one as first) and 32 with the name of Dardanelles or a variation.
Here are some WWI-era examples of given names that include “Anzac” (stolen from the WaltzingMore Than Matilda post, with some details added by me):
So…is “Anzac” still an appropriate name for a baby, now that we’re in the 21st century?
Some people don’t think so.
In 2004, Melbourne couple Reimana Pirika and Gaylene George (of New Zealand and Australia, respectively) decided to name their newborn son Anzac. This angered veterans, who saw it as improper use of the acronym.
Australian politician Danna Vale’s opinion was pretty interesting:
She said that after World War I some children were named Anzac in the “spirit of the times”.
“Over the passage of time views have changed, and I, too, encourage the family to consider the concerns of the ex-service community on the use of Anzac as a child’s name.”
Ms. Vale said she would speak to the RSL about action that could be taken to stop Anzac being used as a name.
Are certain baby names only appropriate in the “spirit of the times”? Do they become inappropriate after too many years/generations have elapsed? What do you think?
In late 1906, Delmas was hired to defend millionaire Harry K. Thaw in a highly publicized murder trial. Thaw, a wealthy playboy, was accused of murdering architect Stanford White in Madison Square Garden (which White had designed, ironically). White was an ex-lover of Thaw’s wife, chorus girl Evelyn Nesbit.
It was the very first trial to be dubbed “the trial of the century” by the press.
Here’s how the New York Times described Delphin Delmas in early 1907:
Delphin Michael Delmas, the “Napoleon of the California Bar,” was brought into the limelight of metropolitan life for the first time last week, when he assumed active charge of the defense of Harry K. Thaw. Everything seemed to be against him. […] Seldom is a lawyer put to such a supreme test under adverse circumstances. The result was entirely to his credit. The externals of the man–his appearance, courtly speech, and little mannerisms–left a final impression of a strong, though somewhat elusive, personality.”
In early 1907, Mr. and Mrs. Alexander Babcock of Kalamazoo, Michigan, couldn’t agree on a baby name.
Mrs. Babcock wanted the baby girl to be called Evelyn Nesbit Babcock after chorus girl Evelyn Nesbit. Why? Because Nesbit’s stepfather’s surname, Holman, also happened to be Mrs. Babcock’s maiden name.
Mr. Babcock objected, noting “the child might be unlucky.” (Nesbit’s husband Harry Kendall Thaw had murdered her ex-lover, Stanford White, in a jealous rage in mid-1906.)
At the christening, after a “whispered conversation between the parents and clergyman,” Mr. Babcock acquiesced. Afterwords, the minister said that “he trusted the child would make a better record than her namesake, although, he added, the wife of Stanford White’s slayer was a creature of circumstance.”
Mr. and Mrs. Babcock weren’t the only parents influenced by Evelyn Nesbit in 1907:
1909: 3,157 baby girls named Evelyn, ranked 18th
1908: 2,857 baby girls named Evelyn, ranked 20th
1907: 3,035 baby girls named Evelyn, ranked 18th
1906: 2,077 baby girls named Evelyn, ranked 32nd
1905: 1,661 baby girls named Evelyn, ranked 46th
The name Evelyn was already increasing in popularity at the time, but the murder and subsequent trial (January to April, 1907) gave it an extra boost in ’07.