PARENTS
02/16/2017 02:25 pm ET

40 Unusual Southern Baby Names From My Family Tree To Yours

Instead of "Emma," try "Lillie Belle."

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A few months ago, I got on a weird genealogy kick. I’ve always liked history, and I got super-obsessed with building my family tree. With all the documents that are online, you can pretty much just click your way farther and farther back in history ― I’d be doing it on my iPhone while my kid played on the playground. And one of my favorite parts of the whole thing is all the weird names I found.

I was born and raised in Oklahoma, and both sides of my family have been in the South for a long time ― primarily Texas on my dad’s side, Arkansas on my mom’s side, and Tennessee for both. I’m not a historian, so I can’t guarantee that all of these names originated in the South, but I can guarantee that somebody living in the South in the 1800s or early 1900s was walking around with it.

I could never have enough babies to use all these family names, so now I’m sharing them with you for inspiration. Please do email if you make a baby and give it one of these names!

Girls

Bell

Burtha

Clara

Dale

Dovey

Elnora

Georgia

Hazel

Hazy 

Hetty

Larnie

Lillie Bell

Lorena

Louella

Minnie

Minta 

Myrtle

Opal

Rowena

Winnifred

Boys

Alton

Arvol

Asa

Clarence

Clayton

Grady

Green

Elmer

Everett

Fountain

Hollis

Jasper

Lachlan 

Lee

Lester

Luther

Prentice

Vernon

Virgil

Willis

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