Special Report

The Most Popular Names In America Since 1880

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15. Alice
> Avg. share of babies named Alice, 1880-2019 0.54%
> Total no. of babies named Alice, 1880-2019: 567,319
> Most popular decade: 1880 when 17,142 babies were named Alice, or 1.31% of all baby girls
> Pictured: Writer Alice Walker

Alice comes from the Old French name Aalis, a short form of Adelais, which itself is short for the Germanic name Adalheidis. Alice became popular in France and England in the 12th century.

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14. Emma
> Avg. share of babies named Emma, 1880-2019 0.57%
> Total no. of babies named Emma, 1880-2019: 690,201
> Most popular decade: 1880 when 25,404 babies were named Emma, or 1.94% of all baby girls
> Pictured: Actress, comedian Emma Thompson

Emma is a short form of the Germanic names that began with “ermen,” meaning whole or universal. It was introduced to England by Emma of Normandy and became a popular name in England after the Norman conquest.

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13. Betty
> Avg. share of babies named Betty, 1880-2019 0.61%
> Total no. of babies named Betty, 1880-2019: 999,901
> Most popular decade: 1930 when 300,391 babies were named Betty, or 2.82% of all baby girls
> Pictured: Actor Betty White

Betty is a nickname or short form of Elizabeth, which means “God is my oath.”

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12. Jennifer
> Avg. share of babies named Jennifer, 1880-2019 0.63%
> Total no. of babies named Jennifer, 1880-2019: 1,468,017
> Most popular decade: 1970 when 581,766 babies were named Jennifer, or 3.77% of all baby girls
> Pictured: Singer, actor Jennifer Lopez

Jennifer is a derivation of Guinevere, which is from the Welsh “gwenhwyfar,” meaning “fair lady.” Until the 20th century, Jennifer was largely a regional name. It is now among the most popular names in the English-speaking world.

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11. Linda
> Avg. share of babies named Linda, 1880-2019 0.63%
> Total no. of babies named Linda, 1880-2019: 1,453,065
> Most popular decade: 1940 when 531,647 babies were named Linda, or 3.67% of all baby girls
> Pictured: Supermodel Linda Evangelista

Linda comes from the Spanish “linda,” which means beautiful and pretty. It is also a short form of Germanic complex names that start with “lind,” meaning tender, soft, or weak.