Is your baby's name in the top baby names for Iowa in 2023? Although most states have similar names to the popular names in the country, each region has unique names sprinkled in here and there. Today, we're covering Iowa‘s Top baby names, including the top 10 for baby boys and girls in 2023, their origins, meanings, and popularity.
Top Baby Boy Names
With Latin, French, and English origins, Oliver has a diverse background. It is believed that the name was brought over to England by the Normans, but the name wasn't originally Oliver; it was Aleifer. This name means “ancestors descent.” Its French origins come from the word Olivier. Olivier means olive tree. The Latin origin comes from the word oliva. Oliva means Olive.
At the beginning of the 20th century, Oliver was a popular name, the 95th most popular in the United States. But, not long after, it fell out of the top 100 and stayed out of the spotlight for a long time. It wasn't until 2014 that its popularity soared. Not only did Oliver find itself on the top 100 names, but it was in the top 50 names, being the 32nd most popular name in the country. Since 2014, Oliver's popularity has continued to rise, and in 2020, it was among the top five names. In 1880, approximately 210,000 people in the United States were named Oliver.
The name Liam has Irish and English origins. It went through a handful of changes in names to get where it is today. Its original Irish name was Uliiam, but after time, it became William, a common name we know today. But William was further shortened into Liam. Liam can be traced all the way back to the eighth century. From Ireland, the name traveled to England in the 11th century, and from there, it continued to grow in popularity throughout the world. Liam means “guardian.”
Liam has also been traced from Ireland to the United States in 1845 due to the potato famine. Many people were suffering from starvation, as a third of Ireland's population relied on potatoes for food. The crops were infected with disease, which destroyed the food supply, and many people migrated to the United States. After many years, the name Liam gained popularity in 2013 when it found itself among the top five names in the country. Just four years later, it was the most popular name in the United States. Approximately 275,000 people in the U.S. have given the name Liam since 1880.
The name Theodore comes from Greek origins. Its original Greek name was Theodoros, which was later shortened to Theodore. It means “gift of God” or “divine gift.” Theodore is not a Bible name, but it holds religious meaning, which made it popular in the Middle Ages.
Theodore has maintained popularity through the years. In the 20th century, it stayed popular for 45 years, maintaining its spot in the top 100 names. After that, it was quiet and less popular until 2020, when there was a surge of Theodore. The name was able to not only break back into the top 100 but also the top 50, holding the 23rd spot. Approximately 271,000 people have been named Theodore in the United States since 1880.
With French and Germanic roots, Henry is a variation of a couple of different names. The French name was originally Henri. And Henri was derived from an old German name, Heimeric. Heimeric means “house ruler.” The name Henry has also been linked to England, as King Henry VIII ruled in the 1500s. Although they are less common than Henry, Henry has feminine variations like Harriet and Henrietta.
The name Henry has been a popular name for a long time in Europe and the United States. Henry made its way into the top 100 names in 2007, not only in the United States but in England, Wales, and Australia. In 2020, it had risen to the top 10 names in America. Approximately 727,000 people have been named Henry in the United States since 1880.
The name Noah has Hebrew origin and is one of the most common and popular Biblical names. It comes from the word Noach, which means “comfort” and “rest.” It's also from the Babylonian word “nukhu,” which also means rest. Historically, Noah has been used as a boy's name, but in recent years, it has also been used for girls and is now seen as a gender-neutral name. As it is a popular name around the world, there are different variations of the name based on the language. Noah in French is Noa. In Finish, it is Nooa. In Swedish, it is Noak.
Noah has stayed consistently popular in the United States. Although it had been in the top 100 names for years, in 2009, it broke its way through to the top 10 most popular names. It has since stayed in the top 10 names and even has found itself in the number one spot. It is believed to have stayed popular due to its cultural significance and its meaning. Since 1880, approximately 453,000 people have been Noah in the United States.
The name Asher has Hebrew origin. It was derived from the Hebrew word Osher, which means “happiness,” “happy,” and “blessed.” Asher also comes from the Old Testament in the Bible, so it has been around for a very long time even though it didn't gain large popularity until more recently. Asher was also mainly used as a boys' name but has seen a shift being used for girls and is now a common gender-neutral name.
Although Asher has been around for a while, it didn't see much popularity until the 1980s when it broke into the top 1,000 names. Even then, it took almost 40 years to make its way up to the top 100 names in 2014. From then, it continued to gain popularity and was in the top 50 names in 2019. It is believed to have gained quick popularity from a handful of TV shows that featured a character named Asher. These TV shows include “How To Get Away With Murder” and “Gossip Girl.” Approximately 80,000 people have been named Asher in the United States since 1880.
Jack is a traditional name that is a derivative of John and has roots in Medieval England. There are a variation of names that turned John to Jack. What started as John became Johnkin, then Jankin, which turned into Jackin, and then lastly turned into Jack. Jack is also believed to have a Celtic origin, in which the name means “strong, healthy, and full of energy.”
Jack has been in the top 50 most popular names since 2000 in the United States. Not only has it been popular in America but also in England, Ireland, Scotland, New Zealand, and Australia. Although it stayed steady in the top 50, Jack reached the top 10 names in 2020. Approximately 725,000 people have been named Jack in the United States since 1880.
The name Brooks has English origins. The word means and directly translates to “small stream” or “water.” It has even been used as a reference to a stream of thought or a stream of people. It was derived from an Old English surname, Broc. Brooks is still a popular English surname to this day. Now being used as a first name, Brooks is looked at as a gender-neutral name, as it is often used for both boys and girls.
Brooks started gaining popularity in the 19th and 20th centuries. It was one of the top 100 popular names in the U.S. in the 1920s. Not long after that, though, the use of the name slowed down, and it hasn't made its way back onto any major lists. Since 1880, approximately 41,000 people have been named Brooks in the United States.
The name Hudson has English origins. It is an English name that means “son of Hudd.” The name Hudd was given to people for their trade. Hudds were people who made hoods. It was also used as a nickname for the Old German name Hugh, which means “spirit” or “mind.” Although it was initially a surname, in recent years, it has been used as a first name in the United States.
Hudson only recently became a popular name in the 2000s. Before then, it was far off from being on any popular lists, but around 2002, it started gaining popularity that eventually led it to be on top lists today. It is believed that its popularity was due to a few characters in TV shows being named Hudson. There was Hudson Hawk in the 1991 film Hudson Hawk and Hudson Gimble, a character in the Nickelodeon show “Game Shakers.” Approximately 83,000 people have been named Hudson in the United States since 1880.
Maverick has English origins and means “unorthodox” or “independent-minded person.” This meaning came from a man in the 1800s who was a Texas cattle rancher who refused to brand his cattle. During that time, this was seen as an act of rebellion and was unorthodox, so they started calling people who didn't follow the rules mavericks.
The name Maverick had some popularity in the late 1900s but didn't really take off until the 2000s. Its rise in popularity started around the time that the “Top Gun” in 1986 was released, “Top Gun: Maverick.” “Maverick” made its way into the top 100 names in 2017 and then into the top 50 by 2020. Since 1880, approximately 44,000 people have been named Maverick in the U.S.
Top Baby Girl Names
The name Olivia has English and Latin origins. It came from the name Oliver. In Latin, Oliver translates to “olive tree.” Olivia is also the feminine variation of the boy named Oliver. It is believed to have first gained popularity in the 13th century when Shakespeare wrote and put on a play called The Twelfth Night, which had a main character named Olivia.
Olivia began rising in popularity in the 1990s. Not only was it popular in America but also in the United Kingdom, Australia, and Canada. Once it gained popularity, it stayed popular. In 1990, it was on the top 100 list, and since then has risen to the top five names. It made that jump in 2014. It is believed to have gained such quick popularity because of the TV show “Scandal,” which has a character named Olivia. Approximately 507,000 people have been named Olivia in the United States since 1880.
Charlotte has German, French, and English origins. It is the female variation of the name Charles. Charles is a variation of the old English word “ceorl” which translates to “free man.” Charles is also the French variation of Carl, which is a German name. Charlot was used as a nickname for the name Charles. And later, it turned into the Charlotte for a girl's name.
Charlotte was in the top 100 most popular names for 45 years, starting in 1908. It later stepped out of the spotlight and didn't reappear on big lists until 2007, when it was back in the top 100 names. It has continued to rise and made its way into the top 10 in 2014 and the top five in 2020. Approximately 402,000 people in the United States have been named Charlotte.
The name Amelia has Latin origins and finds its roots in the word Amal, which means to work. But, it doesn't mean work as in labor. The Latin translation means industriousness and fertility. This name is believed to be the feminine version of the male names Emery, Emmett, and Emil.
Amelia was first believed to have gained popularity in the 18th century because it was being used by Kings to name their daughters. And so, as many royal names do, they become popular in the public as well. But, in recent years, it has gained most of its popularity and was on the top 10 list in 2020. Approximately 231,000 individuals in the United States have been named Amelia.
The name Ava has a handful of believed origins. There is the German derivative of the word aval. Then, there's the Latin derivative of the word avis. And lastly, the Hebrew derivative of the names Eve and Eva. Aval means to “guarantee,” avis means “birdlike,” and the Hebrew names Eve and Eva are “lively” or life.
Ava started gaining popularity in the 1950s and has been rising ever since. It was believed to have had this surge due to Ava Gardner, a movie star who was rising in fame. But Ava really started gaining traction in the late 1990s when a few famous actresses started naming their daughters Ava. Since 1880, approximately 302,000 people have been named Ava in the United States.
The name Sophia has Greek origin. It is associated with sophistication, elegance, and beauty. The name itself means “wisdom.” It originally gained popularity a long time ago when the Greek Orthodox church celebrated Saint Sophia. During the Middle Ages in Europe, it even became a favored royal name, which has led to its long-time popularity and stability.
Since 2006, the name Sophia has stayed in the top 10 names in the United States. In 2011, it even secured the number one spot and was number one for three yeras. Sophia is a classic and vintage name. These vintage names have been popular for parents to choose from over the last few years. Since 1880, approximately 390,000 people in the United States have been named Sophia.
Originally a surname, the name Evelyn has English roots. It means “desired,” “hazelnut,” “life,” and “island.” It is also the anglicized version of the Normal French name, Aveline. Evelyn used to be a common name for girls and boys, but more recently, it has transitioned into mostly being used for girls. The reason behind this is that Evelyn is a combination of the girls named Eve and Lynne.
Evelyn was popular in the United States early in the 20th century. In 1907, it was in the top 20 names and stayed on that list for 23 years. After that extended reign, it disappeared off lists for a while until it reappeared in 2013. During that year, it found itself back on the list of top 20 names and has continued to grow in popularity. In 2020, it was among the top 10 names in America. Since 1880, approximately 605,000 people have been named Evelyn in the United States.
The name Hazel is of English origin. Hazel trees or shrubs produce hazelnuts, which can then be eaten or used to make other products like oil, flour, and even makeup. The wood from this tree is also a highly sought-after wood because of its elastic and durable properties. This wood is used to make items like fishing rods or handles. Also, in ancient folklore, hazel trees were considered sacred, and anyone who ate hazelnuts gained wisdom.
Hazel is among the list of vintage names that have recently begun gaining popularity again. It gained popularity in the 1900s and was regularly on the top 1,000 names list. It even had a brief stint in the top 50 names. But, around 1975, it began losing popularity and didn't resurface into top lists until 2020, when it was back in the top 50. It's believed to have regained popularity not only because it's a vintage name but because it's a plant and flower name that has also regained popularity. Since 1880, approximately 280,000 people in the United States have been named Hazel.
The name Eleanor has Greek, French, and English origins. It is a variation of the English name Alienor, which means “shining light” or “light-hearted.” Broken down, this name translates to “the other Aenor.” This name was used when the French Queen of Aquitaine was named after her mother, Aenor. For many years, this name was associated with successful women on the silver screen as well as the white house.
Although commonly used for girls today, Eleanor was actually in the top 1,000 names in 1908 for boys. But ever since then, it hasn't resurfaced on a list for boys' names. Eleanor gained more popularity for girls in the 2010s when it made its way up the list of top 100 names. It has continued to rise and made it into the top 50 in 2020. Since 1880, approximately 309,000 people have been named Eleanor in the United States.
Emma has English and German roots. It originated from the Old German word “erman” which means “universe” or “whole.” For a long time, it was most popular in England, and this popularity was believed to have been linked to Emma of Normandy. Emma was a woman who had been Queen twice, married to two different English kings. It is also believed that Emma was popular in the 1800s because of the novel “Emma,” published in 1816 by Jane Austen.
In the United States, Emma gained popularity very quickly and stayed consistently on top name lists. In the early 1900s, it was in the top 100 names for 21 years until it declined. Then, later in the 1990s, it had a large surge in popularity, and in 2003, it claimed the number two spot. It is believed that Emma became so popular because of the TV show “Friends,” where Ross and Rachel named their baby Emma. Emma hit the number-one spot in 2007. Since 1880, approximately 723,000 people in the United States have been named Emma.
The name Willow has English origins and is a feminine name meaning “willow tree.” It was originally a derivative of the word weblog, which translates to willow. Willow trees are known for their prosperity even when put in unfavorable conditions. This name symbolizes vitality and resilience.
Willow is a name that only recently gained popularity. It broke into the top 1,000 names in 2002 and has been slowly gaining more and more popularity each year. 2023 was its first year breaking into the top 100 names, and with how it's been trending over the last 20 years, it's likely safe to say it won't be long until it hits the top 50. Since 1880, approximately 46,000 people have been named Willow in the United States.
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