Category: baby name Blue
By Abby Sandel, Appelation Mountain
Both new arrivals names’ are definitely distinctive, and at first glance, it might seem that they wouldn’t have much impact on what the rest of us name our children.
But high profile birth announcements – even the most extreme examples – do change the way that we think about possible names, often for the better.
Few subjects are as divisive as gender neutral baby names, and yet I can’t stop talking about them. Some of us deny their very existence. Others are willing to call a daughter James, but hesitate to name a son Avery or Madison. Many of us are discovering nature names or other novel appellations, ones that don’t easily declare themselves pink or blue.
Not every culture splits names into such neat categories, and names certainly shift over time. Plenty of ends-in-a options, like Noah and Joshua have become favorites for boys, even though they’re very different from the once-dominant Bob, Tom, and Bill – proof that we can reconsider names every generation, if not more often.
Though its current associations might run more to barbecues, picnics and parades, Memorial Day conjures up a load of historic references dating back to its post-Civil War origins, as well as some more contemporary traditions.
There are several blogs-worth of noteworthy Civil War generals’ names alone—Alpheus, Americus, Cassius, Gustavus, Lafayette, Napoleon, Pleasant, Romeyn, for starters– but for now we’ve included just a few of the most intriguing, as well as some less obvious Memorial Day names associated with the holiday.
BLUE and GREY—The colors of the uniforms of the Union and Confederate soldiers fighting the Civil War (the Confederate soldiers sometimes referred to the Yankees disparagingly as ‘bluebellies’), Blue and Gray are the current coolest of the unisex color names. Blue Ivy is the much-discussed name picked by Beyoncé and Jay-Z for their daughter; actress Jenna von Oy recently named her daughter Gray.
CATHAY—Cathay Williams—aka William Cathay—was one of many women who passed as men to serve as Civil War soldiers. A former slave, she was the first African-American woman to enlist. Cathay is an evocative old term for China used by Marco Polo that could make an interesting choice—if it weren’t in danger of being constantly confused with Cathy.