Special Report

The Most Common City Names in the US

Joshua McDonough / Getty Images

City names are meant to describe and distinguish one community from another. But many cities are often named after a person who made a significant impact on the country as a whole. The result is a moniker that is hardly unique. In fact, it turns out to be among the most popular in the U.S.

To identify the most common city names in the United States, 24/7 Tempo reviewed the names of nearly 31,000 cities, towns, municipalities, boroughs, villages, and census designated places collected by the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2019 American Community Survey. Population data also came from the ACS.

For a country the size of the United States, it’s not surprising that some towns, both big and small, share the same name. About 15,000 city names appear between two and 32 times across the country.

There are no rules for naming towns. Some are christened after their founders or a defining geographical feature. Others have monikers based on other languages. And then there are some places whose names seem completely random — here are 50 strangest town names in the U.S. (and where they came from).

Click here to see the most common city names in the U.S.

Source: Rmisiak / Wikimedia Commons

34. Winchester
> No. of cities named Winchester 19
> Most populous city: Winchester, Nevada (population: 28,231)
> Fun fact: You can’t write “Winchester, NV” on postal addresses. The United States Postal Service considers it to be part of Las Vegas, NV.


Source: rasilja / Getty Images

33. Plymouth
> No. of cities named Plymouth 19
> Most populous city: Plymouth, Minnesota (population: 78,134)
> Fun fact: Plymouth, Minnesota, can be traced back to the pre-Colombian period, 1400-1500 A.D., when the Dakota tribe lived there.

Source: SeanPavonePhoto / Getty Images

32. Jackson
> No. of cities named Jackson 19
> Most populous city: Jackson, Mississippi (population: 166,383)
> Fun fact: Named after the seventh U.S. president, Andrew Jackson, the nickname of Jackson, Mississippi, is “the crossroads of the South.”

31. Hamilton
> No. of cities named Hamilton 19
> Most populous city: Hamilton, Ohio (population: 62,182)
> Fun fact: Before it was Hamilton, Ohio, the city was named Fairfield, still among the most common city names in the country.


Source: Davel5957 / iStock via Getty Images

30. Dayton
> No. of cities named Dayton 19
> Most populous city: Dayton, Ohio (population: 140,569)
> Fun fact: Dayton, Ohio, was named after Capt. Jonathan Dayton, a Revolutionary War hero and the youngest person to sign the U.S. Constitution.

Source: KingWu / iStock Unreleased via Getty Images

29. Auburn
> No. of cities named Auburn 19
> Most populous city: Auburn, Washington (population: 80,134)
> Fun fact: Auburn, Washington, was the only town invited to the 2018 Winter Olympics — and that’s because it is a sister city of PyeongChang!


Source: RoschetzkyIstockPhoto / Getty Images

28. Georgetown
> No. of cities named Georgetown 19
> Most populous city: Georgetown, Texas (population: 71,004)
> Fun fact: Georgetown, South Carolina was named after George Prince of Wales, who later became King George II of England.

Source: Mike Russell / Wikimedia Commons

27. Troy
> No. of cities named Troy 20
> Most populous city: Troy, Michigan (population: 83,989)
> Fun fact: In 2004, Sports Illustrated named Troy Michigan’s Sportstown for the town’s community sports programs.

Source: Sean Pavone / Getty Images

26. Richmond
> No. of cities named Richmond 20
> Most populous city: Richmond, Virginia (population: 226,622)
> Fun fact: The Virginia General Assembly operates in Richmond and is the oldest legislature anywhere in the Americas.


Source: traveler1116 / Getty Images

25. Lincoln
> No. of cities named Lincoln 20
> Most populous city: Lincoln, Nebraska (population: 283,839)
> Fun fact: The University of Nebraska in Lincoln was until recently home to the largest weight room in the country, covering an area of 3/4 of an acre.

24. Hudson
> No. of cities named Hudson 20
> Most populous city: Hudson, Ohio (population: 22,263)
> Fun fact: In 2002, Hudson, Ohio, was the first community in the U.S. to launch a citywide electronic gift card.


Source: AllenS / Wikimedia Commons

23. Farmington
> No. of cities named Farmington 20
> Most populous city: Farmington, New Mexico (population: 45,258)
> Fun fact: Farmington, New Mexico, has an average of 273 sunny days and just 7.5 inches of rain a year.

Source: AlessandraRC / iStock via Getty Images

22. Fairfield
> No. of cities named Fairfield 20
> Most populous city: Fairfield, California (population: 115,282)
> Fun fact: Fairfield, California, is named after Fairfield, Connecictut.

Source: OlegAlbinsky / Getty Images

21. Kingston
> No. of cities named Kingston 20
> Most populous city: Kingston, New York (population: 23,070)
> Fun fact: Kingston, New York was set on fire by British soldiers after the Battle of Saratoga.


Source: Joshua McDonough / Getty Images

20. Newport
> No. of cities named Newport 20
> Most populous city: Newport, Rhode Island (population: 24,663)
> Fun fact: In 1700, over half of the population in Newport, Rhode Island were members of the Quaker-inspired religious group, Society of Friends.

19. Clayton
> No. of cities named Clayton 20
> Most populous city: Clayton, North Carolina (population: 21,681)
> Fun fact: Clayton, Missouri was named for Ralph Clayton, who settled in that region during the 1830s century and donated land for establishing the courthouse.


Source: Courtesy of the City of Burlington, NC

18. Burlington
> No. of cities named Burlington 22
> Most populous city: Burlington, North Carolina (population: 53,063)
> Fun fact: The very first Ben & Jerry’s ice cream store opened in 1978 in Burlington, Vermont.

Source: BOB WESTON / iStock via Getty Images

17. Oxford
> No. of cities named Oxford 22
> Most populous city: Oxford, Mississippi (population: 26,962)
> Fun fact: Oxford, Mississippi was named after the prestigious Oxford University in England.

Source: Thomson200 / Wikimedia Commons

16. Milton
> No. of cities named Milton 22
> Most populous city: Milton, Georgia (population: 38,759)
> Fun fact: Milton, Florida is nicknamed Scratch Ankle due to the briars, or prickly shrubs, growing in the region.


Source: pbk-pg / Getty Images

15. Ashland
> No. of cities named Ashland 22
> Most populous city: Ashland, California (population: 24,430)
> Fun fact: Ashland, Oregon was founded in 1852 by three men who shortly after established a timber mill.

Source: wellesenterprises / Getty Images

14. Monroe
> No. of cities named Monroe 23
> Most populous city: Monroe, Louisiana (population: 48,241)
> Fun fact: Monroe, Louisiana used to be a trading post called Fort Miro. The city was renamed in 1819 in honor of the first steamboat on the Ouachita River, which happened to be named after the fifth U.S. president, James Monroe.


Source: JTGrafix / Getty Images

13. Springfield
> No. of cities named Springfield 23
> Most populous city: Springfield, Missouri (population: 167,051)
> Fun fact: Springfield, Illinois was the home of Abraham Lincoln and his family from 1837 until 1861 — the year he became president.

Source: DenisTangneyJr / iStock via Getty Images

12. Milford
> No. of cities named Milford 23
> Most populous city: Milford, Connecticut (population: 52,732)
> Fun fact: Milford, Connecticut is known for its annual Oyster Festival, which also includes kayak and canoe races.

Source: Cypress Landing / Wikimedia Commons

11. Greenville
> No. of cities named Greenville 23
> Most populous city: Greenville, North Carolina (population: 91,921)
> Fun fact: Greenville, Alabama’s original name was Buttsville.


Source: Veronidae / Wikimedia Commons

10. Arlington
> No. of cities named Arlington 23
> Most populous city: Arlington, Texas (population: 395,477)
> Fun fact: Before Las Vegas, Arlington, Texas was the largest gambling destination in the country in the 1930s and 1940s.

Source: Smallbones / Wikimedia Commons

9. Chester
> No. of cities named Chester 24
> Most populous city: Chester, Pennsylvania (population: 33,982)
> Fun fact: William Penn gave the city of Chester, Pennsylvania its name in tribute to Chester, England.


Source: svetlana57 / Getty Images

8. Salem
> No. of cities named Salem 24
> Most populous city: Salem, Oregon (population: 169,259)
> Fun fact: Salem is the Anglicized form of the Hebrew word shalom, which means peace. Despite the peaceful origin, Salem, Massachusetts is most notorious for the witch trials of 1692-1693.

Source: abreiholz / Flickr

7. Marion
> No. of cities named Marion 24
> Most populous city: Marion, Iowa (population: 39,328)
> Fun fact: Marion, Ohio is nicknamed the World’s Popcorn Capital.

Source: DenisTangneyJr / Getty Images

6. Manchester
> No. of cities named Manchester 24
> Most populous city: Manchester, New Hampshire (population: 112,109)
> Fun fact: Another one of the many U.S. cities named after British cities, Manchester is the largest city in New Hampshire.


Source: f11photo / Getty Images

5. Washington
> No. of cities named Washington 25
> Most populous city: Washington, District of Columbia (population: 692,683)
> Fun fact: Washington, D.C. streets have letters for names. But there is no J street, because D.C. was planned before the letter J was added to the English alphabet.

Source: roadgeek / Flickr

4. Fairview
> No. of cities named Fairview 26
> Most populous city: Fairview, New Jersey (population: 14,258)
> Fun fact: Fairview, New Jersey, is considered a suburb of New York City.


Source: Sean Pavone / Getty Images

3. Madison
> No. of cities named Madison 26
> Most populous city: Madison, Wisconsin (population: 254,977)
> Fun fact: Madison, Wisconsin was named after former president and Founding Father James Madison.

Source: John M. Chase / iStock Unreleased via Getty Images

2. Clinton
> No. of cities named Clinton 30
> Most populous city: Clinton, Maryland (population: 39,018)
> Fun fact: Clinton, Arkansas was named after New York Gov. DeWitt Clinton, not former President Bill Clinton.

Source: csfotoimages / Getty Images

1. Franklin
> No. of cities named Franklin 32
> Most populous city: Franklin, Tennessee (population: 77,939)
> Fun fact: Named after Founding Father Benjamin Franklin, this Texas town was founded on October 26, 1799.

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