Baby Names


Most Popular Baby Names by Year


Top 100 Baby Names for the 1900s

Top 100 Baby Names for the 1900s

This decade ushered in a dramatic new century. New modes of transportation appeared and set the stage for worldwide changes.

In 1900, the first zeppelin launched in Germany. Just three years later, the Wright brothers flew their plane at Kitty Hawk, NC. Automobiles, while still somewhat unusual, became more popular.

In spite of these bold events, little changed among the 20 most popular names from the 1900s.

Traditional baby name sources, such as the Bible and British royalty, were still common sources for 1900s names. John and Mary, both Biblical names, remained the most popular names for babies.

1900s Girl Names

Opal and Violet were new to the list in this decade, showing that flowers and gemstones continued to provide inspiration for girl names. Names such as Rose, Hazel, and Myrtle refer to specific plants, while Florence simply means “blossom” or “flower.”

Pearl and Ruby were popular ways to name girls after precious stones.

Velma and Bernice were among the newly popular 1900s girl names.

The women's suffrage movement was growing at this time. Possibly because of this, Mildred, which means “gentle strength”, zoomed up this list from 42 to 10.

Gladys climbed from 43 to 14 due in part to several characters by that name in late-18th-century novels.

1900s kids

Top 100 Baby Girl Names From the 1900s

Top 100 Baby Names for the 1900s

1900s Boy Names

Popular 1900s names for boys remained fairly stable. The top five, which were all names of past British kings, went unchanged from previous years.

There also was little movement in the rest of the list. Clarence and Walter remained near the top of the list of boy names, while Victor and Allen remained near the bottom.

There were some exceptions to this rule. Johnnie made an appearance at number 87, while Ira disappeared from the most popular 1900s baby names.

As in the past, boy names often expressed virtues such as strength, courage, or nobility. Roy, which means “king”, and Earl are literal expressions of royalty.

Walter, which is new to the list, and Harold both mean “army leader.” Newly popular Ralph means “fearless advisor.”

Famous figures also influenced name popularity.

In 1901, US President McKinley was assassinated. The vice president, Theodore Roosevelt, stepped into the role of President and was re-elected in 1904. Roosevelt's popularity is the most likely reason that Theodore soared from 89 to 38 on the 1900s popular boy's names list.

While the vast majority of names are seen as either masculine or feminine, Jessie was a common name for both boys and girls.

1900s kids

Top 100 Baby Boy Names From the 1900s

It's been a long, long time since the 1900s. Name traditions have changed tremendously since then, so you might be wondering how the popular 1900s names fair today. Let's take a look at the top five boy's and girl's names from the 1900s to find out.

For boys, the top names were John, William, James, George, and Charles. John remains in the top 50 at number 40. William and James rank a lot better than John, at 12 and nine respectively. George ranks a lot lower than these three names, at 262. Charles remains in the Top 100, ranking at 84 today. If you want to give your son a traditional name that isn't all too popular, George is definitely the way to go.

For girls, the top names were Mary, Helen, Margaret, Anna, and Ruth. Mary ranks in the bottom half of the Top 500, at 330. Helen ranks a lot lower than Mary in 2023, at 849. Margaret is in better shape than both, ranking at 312. Anna ranks even better at 220. Ruth sinks below all but Helen at 415. All of these names are great options for parents who want a traditional name for their daughter that isn't terribly popular in 2023.

Top 100 Baby Names by Decade

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