By Pamela Redmond Satran for Nameberry
One of the biggest baby name stories this week is The Week’s look at the least popular baby names in the U.S. from 1880 through 1932.
While names like Handy, Spurgeon, Icy, and Toy -- that were culled from the bottom rungs of the Top 1000 -- are indeed hilarious, it may be sobering to consider that some baby names that were equally unpopular back then went on to win widespread favor.
Names that were given to only five babies at the end of the 19th century, right down there with Spurgeon and Icy, include many of today’s hotties:
1880 Natalie, Hudson
1881 Madeleine, Lincoln
1882 Iris, Griffin
1883 Juliette, Blake
1884 Arabella, Tyler
1885 Rosemary, Sebastian
1886 Susannah, Reed
1887 Maryann, Brady
1888 Karen, Gregory
1889 Miley , Kyle
1890 Willow, Weston
1891 Stephanie, Wyatt
1892 Beatrix, Tobias
1893 Lake, Hayden
1894 Erin, Tucker
1895 Penelope, Colin
1896 Courtney, Jonah
1897 Maisie, Casey
1898 Holly, Dane
1899 Ariel, Jason
Choices like Gladys and Bertha, Clarence and Earl even pranced around at the head of the popularity lists.
But you don’t have to go so far back to find such baffling gaps in baby name taste. In 1972, tens of thousands of babies were named Heather and Tammy, Scott and Chad, instead of Adair and Coco, Sienna and Liv, Atticus and Finnian, which all languished at the bottom of the list given to only five babies each.
Of course, these names that sound cool 50 years later were joined down in the baby name dumps by such choices as Cachet, Candle, Classie, and Marijuana for girls; Friend, Kaiser, Lemon, Master, and Mister for boys.
And today? Names given to just five girls, the lowest number counted, in 2012 include the following 20 choices:
Names at the bottom of the boys’ list in 2012 include:
So which will be the Sebastians and which the Spurgeons of the future? That’s a decision our grandchildren will make.
See the top girls', boys' and unisex names of the year so far in the slideshow below...