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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Posts
    197

    Meet Clelya: Antique name gems pulled from obituaries in the Midwest

    I work at a large Midwestern newspaper and am a name junkie. For the past three months, I have recorded names from obituaries. My rule: The person had to be age 85 or older at the time of his or her death. (Obviously, this meant there would be more girls’ names.)

    Below I have listed the first name, year of birth, and middle name, if it was listed in the obituary. All of the spellings are listed as they appeared in the obituaries.

    I found some lovely gems alongside some awkward monikers (Velva, anyone?) If the 100-year rule proves true, many of these names could be popular again in the next 10 to 20 years – some are already climbing the charts. Obviously, my data is not scientific. However, I think it provides a nice cross-section of baby names from 1907 to 1928.

    1. If you had to name one daughter and one son using only names from this list, which would you select?

    2. Which child do you feel most sorry for on this list?

    3. What was the biggest surprise on this list to you?

    GIRLS
    Agnes, 1916
    Anna Mae, 1920
    Anne, 1919
    Anne, 1927
    Bernedene, 1925
    Catherine, 1920
    Catherine Rita, 1928
    Charlotte Vivian, 1918
    Charlotte, 1923
    Clelya, 1910
    Doris, 1913
    Dorothy, 1925
    Elaine, 1923
    Elsie Anna, 1917
    Eunice Marie, 1926
    Evelyn, 1924
    Flossie, 1915
    Frances, 1915
    Gladys Jo, 1919
    Gloria, 1922
    Helen, 1907
    Helen, 1915
    Helen Elaine, 1918
    Helen, 1926
    Josephine, 1920
    Kathleen, 1927
    Lois, 1920
    Lorraine, 1927
    Mable Kathleen, 1924
    Margaret, 1927
    Margaret Aletha, 1919
    Margarete, 1924
    Mary Ellen, 1922
    Mary Jane, 1920
    Mary Ruth, 1917
    Mary, 1927
    Maxine, 1927
    Nancy, 1908
    Norma Lucille, 1923
    Mildred, who went by “Mim,” 1922
    Palma Christine, 1919
    Patricia Jean, 1923
    Peggy, 1923
    Peggy June, 1922
    Ramona, 1923
    Rita, 1925
    Ruby Mae, 1920
    Ruth, 1919
    Trina, 1922
    Vadis, 1921
    Velma, 1924
    Velva, 1920
    Virginia May, 1924
    Vivian Marie, 1928
    Wilma June, 1917

    BOYS
    Anthony, 1927
    Barton, 1924
    Benjamin, 1924
    Byron, 1926
    Charles, 1914
    Charles Kenneth, 1922
    Clarence Henry, 1924
    Dareld, 1923
    Darwin Albert, 1927
    Edward, 1924
    Elmer, 1928
    Frank, 1923
    Fred Nolan, 1925
    Harley, 1928
    Harry, 1923
    Herb, 1928
    Howard, 1922
    James, 1918
    Joel, 1924
    Larry Gene, 1927
    Lee, 1926
    Leland Edgar, 1927
    Lloyd Gene, 1927
    Malcolm Robert, 1928
    Merrill, 1923
    Merrill Eugene, 1923
    Neil, 1915
    Noel (male), 1916
    Otto, 1916
    Peter, 1923
    Raymond, 1928
    Robert, 1916
    Robert George, 1925
    Robert, 1927
    Roger Wayne, 1921
    Thomas, 1924
    Verle, 1924
    Verne, 1922
    Walter Thomas, 1920
    Wayne Harold, 1923
    Wilbur, 1923
    William, 1927

  2. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    Canada
    Posts
    155
    1. Josephine, Otto
    2. Eunice- I strongly dislike this name
    3. Clelya. Or Palma
    Forty-something mom to three teenage girls and an eleven-year-old boy
    Foster mom to two sweet sisters born Aug 2011 and Sept 2012 and another wee girl born Aug 2013

  3. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Alberta, Canada
    Posts
    124
    Wow I have to say people back in the day knew how name children! Out of both lists there's only one from the girls list I feel sorry for, Clelya, and from the men it would be Verle.

    If I had to pick one girl to name it would be Norma Lucille, Velma was a very close second.
    And for boys if I had to pick one it would be Peter, with Leland Edgar a close second as well.

    Forgot the most surprising was Darwin.
    Last edited by girlymegz; October 18th, 2013 at 10:56 PM.
    Charming Boys: Arthur, Gulliver, Oliver, Clark, Linus, Edmund,

    Gorgeous Girl: Juliet, Matilda, Harriet, Vada, Odette

  4. #7
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
    Location
    Germany
    Posts
    1,428
    1. Ruby Mae & Benjamin

    2. Vadis

    3. Clelya & Vadis

  5. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Posts
    197
    I suppose I should add my own responses! I am completely in agreement about Eunice -- I think it is the only female Biblical name that completely lacks appeal.

    1. Ruth, James

    2. Velva -- far too anatomical

    3. Harley -- I wrongly assumed this name was only given to the children of motorcycle men starting in the 1990s!

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