The Social Security Administration compiles and publishes a comprehensive list of the most popular baby names in the United States every year. They also release baby name data for every state. So, what were the trendiest baby names in Wisconsin in 2023?
We will examine the most popular names for boys and girls in “America's Dairyland,” as Wisconsin is commonly called. Moreover, we will explore the similarities and differences between Wisconsin's list and the national list. We will also note which names are regional favorites.
Wisconsin's Top Baby Boy Names for 2023
Wisconsin's list of baby boy names includes four regional favorites: Levi, Jack, Hudson, and Leo. While rising in popularity, these names do not appear in the national top ten names for boys. However, overall, Wisconsin's list closely resembles the national top ten, with parents continuing to embrace traditional names like Liam, Oliver, and William.
Oliver is currently a very popular name for boys, just like its feminine counterpart, Olivia. The name has its roots in the Latin name Oliverius, and it is an Old French name that traditionally means “olive tree” or “kind one.” Olive trees have long been associated with peace, hence the connection to the “olive branch” as a peace offering. Moreover, the name Oliver is also likely connected to the Old Norse name Óleifr as well as the modern Danish Olaf and Swedish Olof.
Theodore is a traditional name originating from the Greek name Theódōros, which means “gift of god.” This name has regained its popularity after more than a century. It was last popular when Theodore Roosevelt was president in 1901. Teddy Roosevelt, as he was commonly known, is credited with inspiring the name of the iconic children's toy, the teddy bear. The name Theodore offers a variety of nickname options, including Theo, Ted, and Teddy.
Royalty has long favored the name Henry. The name's roots can be traced back to the Old French and Anglo-Norman name Henri, which shares a cognate with the common German name Heinrich. “Estate ruler” or “ruler of the home” is the meaning of the name Henry. It has been a traditional name for many years and has been the name of eight English kings.
Liam is a name that originates from the Irish name Uilliam, which is equivalent to William. Moreover, this name has a powerful sound, and its meaning is equally rugged. The name means “strong-willed protector” or “helmet of will.” It entered the top 100 baby names list in 2008. Since 2014, it has remained in the top ten names for boys. In 2017, it became the most popular name for boys and continues to stay in the top ten list in both England and the United States.
Levi has been a popular name for Jewish boys throughout most of history, but after the Puritans adopted it in the early 1850s, it became more common among Protestants. The name has a biblical origin and means “joined” or “united.” Levi was one of the twelve sons of Jacob and Leah in the Bible, and it was also used as an alias by the prophet Matthew. Additionally, the name Levi is associated with the Hungarian name Levente, which means “hero.” In recent years, Levi has been a popular choice for baby boys and has consistently ranked among the top twenty names.
In medieval England, people used the name Jack as a diminutive of John, meaning “God is gracious.” The phrase “Jack of all trades” was also coined during the Middle Ages to describe individuals who performed many different jobs. Some believe that Jack is linked to this phrase. Historically, Jack was mainly a nickname, but in the twenty-first century, it has become a popular standalone name among many parents.
The name Noah has its roots in the name Noach, which is derived from the Hebrew root nuach. This widely used name means “rest” or “repose.” This ancient biblical name was the most popular boy's name in the United States from 2013 to 2017 when it finally fell to second place. Noa, on the other hand, is a distinct feminine Hebrew name, although it is also used as an alternate spelling of the male name Noah.
Another boy's name on our list that was popular with monarchs is the name William. Meaning “resolute protector” or “strong-willed warrior,” this name comes from Wilhelm, a name of Old German origin. William the Conqueror introduced this classic name to England, and several British monarchs have used it. Today, Prince William, Duke of Cambridge, who is the eventual heir to the British throne, is one of the most well-known Williams.
Hudson is a common nickname for the Old German name Hugh, which means “mind” or “spirit.” Although Hudson was originally a surname, it has become increasingly popular as a first name for boys in the last four decades. This trend follows the pattern of other gender-neutral surnames that have become popular given names, such as Carson, Colton, Holden, and Grayson.
Since 700 B.C., men who are brave and lionhearted have been described using the Latin word Leo, meaning “lion.” Although the name declined in popularity during the twentieth century, it has experienced a resurgence in recent years, partly due to the tremendous success of the 1997 film “Titanic.” Many people credit the film's star, Leonardo DiCaprio, for the renewed interest in this strong and timeless name for boys.
Wisconsin's Top Baby Girl Names for 2023
The trendiest names for girls in Wisconsin are similar to the national top ten list, with only three names being unique to Wisconsin: Eleanor, Nora, and Harper. These names are not currently in the national top ten list, but they are steadily gaining popularity and may make the list in the next few years. Additionally, Wisconsin's list also reveals the popularity of vintage names for girls that end with an A-sound, as evidenced by Ava, Amelia, Emma, Sophia, and Nora making the top ten.
Charlotte derives its meaning “free man” from its French origin. This name has been favored by royalty for centuries. Charlotte's recent surge in popularity may be linked to the Netflix series “Bridgerton” and “Queen Charlotte.” Additionally, the daughter of Kate Middleton and Prince William, Princess Charlotte, may have contributed to the name's rising popularity. Currently, Charlotte is not only popular in America but also in European countries, making it a traditional yet trendy name for baby girls.
Olivia is currently one of the most popular names for girls, just like its masculine counterpart, Oliver. The name has its roots in the Latin word oliva, which means “olive,” meaning “peace” or “olive tree.” In the UK, parents have been naming their girls Olivia since the mid-1990s. In the United States, the name has also been gaining popularity over the years, so much so that it was the number one name for girls in both the United States and the United Kingdom in 2020.
The Latin word “Amal,” meaning “work,” is the origin of this vintage name. Parents are choosing this name for their daughters this year, likely due to its A-sound ending, which is currently fashionable. Moreover, this name is versatile and lends itself to trendy girl nicknames such as Amy, Mia, and Emma.
Evelyn, originally an English surname, is the anglicized form of the Norman French name Aveline. Aveline has various meanings, including “desired,” “life,” and “island.” While Evelyn is a unisex name, it is now more common as a feminine name, perhaps because it reminds parents of the names Eve or Eva. The name Evelyn appeared in the top ten names back in 1910 but fell out of favor for most of the twentieth century. However, now it has seen a dramatic resurgence in popularity like other traditional names on this list.
Stemming from the Germanic word ermen, meaning “whole” or “universal,” Emma is another vintage name ending in an A-sound that parents love right now. Although the name fell out of fashion between the 1940s and the 1970s, it has steadily gained popularity since the 1990s. In fact, between 2014 and 2019, Emma was the most popular girl's name in the United States.
Eleanor is an English variation of the French name Alienor. However, the meaning of the name is not entirely clear. Some historians suggest that it originated from the Germanic name Adenorde, which means “ancient north.” On the other hand, some believe that it comes from the Latin phrase alia Aenor, which translates to “other Aenor.” In the twelfth century, Queen Eleanor of Aquitaine introduced this name to England from France.
Nora has two distinct origins. The European origin of the name comes from the Latin word “Honora,” which means “honor.” Additionally, Nora is a shortened version of the Greek name Eleanora, which means “light.” However, Nora is generally considered to be of Irish origin. Apart from being a given name, Nora is also a popular nickname for girls named Eleanor, Eleanora, and Lenora.
Ava is an ancient name, making its meaning quite difficult to define. Similar to the name Evelyn, it is believed that Ava stems from the Germanic name Aveline. Moreover, it may be connected to the Persian word amal, which means “work.” Additionally, the name is associated with a Germanic root that means “island” or “water.” Although Ava was popular in the Middle Ages, it fell out of fashion for centuries, only to become trendy again in the twenty-first century after celebrities such as Reese Witherspoon chose the name for their children.
Sophia, another traditional name on our list, means “wisdom” in Greek. Moreover, the name has long been associated with beauty and royalty, particularly during the Middle Ages. While always popular in Europe, the name only took hold in America during the 1990s. Since that time, it has steadily risen in popularity, becoming the number one name for girls between 2011 and 2013.
In the medieval period, Harper was an occupational surname used to describe those who played the harp. Moreover, in Ireland, England, and Scotland, many people used Harper as a last name. Later on, the name evolved into a popular given name for girls. Since 2004, it has slowly gained favor, finally entering the top ten list in 2020. Harper Lee, the author of the novel “To Kill a Mockingbird,” is often credited with the name's popularity.
Like many states, Wisconsin's most popular baby name list closely resembles the national top ten list. Wisconsin follows the national trend by favoring traditional baby names with biblical associations for boys. For girls, parents love vintage names that end with an A-sound. As for the regional favorites, Wisconsin's embrace of the names Harper and Leo reflects their growing popularity.
There are countless names to choose from nowadays, whether you prefer trendy or less common ones. While choosing a baby name is a big decision, there is inspiration everywhere. With a little bit of research, you are sure to find a name that you and your partner will love for your little one.
The image featured at the top of this post is ©Alexander Lukatskiy/Shutterstock.com.