Names that Peaked in 1935

  1. Mary
    • Origin:

      Hebrew or Egyptian
    • Meaning:

      "drop of the sea, bitter, or beloved"
    • Description:

      Mary is the English form of Maria, which ultimately was derived from the Hebrew name Maryam/Mariam. The original meaning of Maryam is uncertain, but theories include "drop of the sea" (from Hebrew roots mar "drop" and yam "sea"); "bitter" (from Hebrew marah "bitterness"); and "beloved" (from the Egyptian root mr).
  2. Robert
    • Origin:

      English from German
    • Meaning:

      "bright fame"
    • Description:

      Robert was the Number 1 boys' name in the US in both 1925 and 1950, and in fact was in the Top 25 for more than a century, giving it true classic status. Strong if not quite stylish, Robert remains in the Top 100 for baby boys as a family favorite.
  3. Richard
    • Origin:

      German
    • Meaning:

      "dominant ruler"
    • Description:

      A classic old Norman name popular for a thousand years and favored for kings (Richard Nixon was named for Richard the Lionhearted), as well as the hoi polloi (as in every Tom, Dick and Harry), Richard was the sixth most popular US boys’ name in 1925, and was still Number 8 in 1950, but is now much less popular.
  4. Royce
    • Origin:

      English
    • Meaning:

      "son of the king"
    • Description:

      It may seem like an indecisive cross between Roy and Reece, but Royce was fairly popular in the 1930s and '40s. It has seen a resurgence in recent years, helped by some well-known athlete bearers. The Latin pop singer Prince Royce also has brought renown to the name. And some aspirational parents may see the name as a way to associate with the Rolls-Royce brand.
  5. Gordon
    • Origin:

      Scottish
    • Meaning:

      "great hill"
    • Description:

      As this long-term Age of Jordans, both male and female, begins to wind down, the neglected Scottish favorite Gordon, with its more distinguished history, could come back as a distinctive alternative. Gordon is one of the most classic authentically Scottish names for boys.
  6. Billy
    • Origin:

      English, diminutive of William
    • Meaning:

      "resolute protection"
    • Description:

      Cute kid with freckles, bouncing a Spalding ball. Cool couple Helena Bonham Carter and Tim Burton put the name Billy Burton on their son's birth certificate. While the classic William, name of the future king of England, may in fact be German, the nickname Billy along with such other classic short forms as Jim and Joe are authentically English names for boys.
  7. Ted
    • Origin:

      Diminutive of Theodore or Edward
    • Meaning:

      "gift of god; rich guard"
    • Description:

      Like Ed, Eddie and Teddy, Ted is rarely used as an independent name – in the US, at least. In the UK, Eddie ranks just outside the Top 200, Teddy ranks just outside the Top 30, and Ted is a Top 200 pick.

      With Theodore rising, Ted may have new life among parents who don't want to use the short form Theo. And TV's Ted Lasso makes it a quintessential nice guy name.
  8. Marlene
    • Origin:

      German variation of Madeline; combination of Mary and Magdalen
    • Description:

      Marlene Dietrich made it famous when she condensed her first two names, Maria and Magdalena. Now more often pronounced with two syllables rather than three.
  9. Buddy
    • Origin:

      English, nickname name
    • Description:

      Until recently it was rarely used as a proper name; Buddy Holly, for example, was christened Charles, and Salinger's Buddy Glass was born Webb. Celebrity chef Jamie Oliver did name his fourth child Buddy Bear Maurice--a fittingly named brother to Poppy Honey Rosie, Daisy Boo Pamela and Petal Blossom Rainbow, and singer Tom Fletcher has a double-nicknamed Buddy Bob.
  10. Shirley
    • Origin:

      English
    • Meaning:

      "bright meadow"
    • Description:

      Shirley Temple almost single-handedly lifted the gloom of the Great Depression, and in tribute (and perhaps wishing for a similarly curly-headed, dimpled darling of their own), thousands of parents of that generation gave their little girls her name. In 1935, Shirley was the second most popular girls' name in the country with more than 42,000 babies named Shirley.
  11. Leroy
    • Origin:

      French
    • Meaning:

      "the king"
    • Description:

      Leroy's heyday was in the early twentieth century, when it was in the US Top 100 until 1949. As a result, it's now more frequently seen as a father or grandfather name rather than a viable newborn option. Though it has dropped off the popularity charts several times in recent years, it hasn't fallen into complete obscurity yet.
  12. Ruthie
    • Origin:

      Diminutive of Ruth, Hebrew
    • Meaning:

      "compassionate friend"
    • Description:

      With vintage names on the rise and recent data suggesting that the US is following the UK trend of nicknames-as-given-names, Ruthie joined Goldie, Daisy, and Nellie on the US Top 1000 list in 2023.
  13. Joanne
    • Origin:

      French variation of Joanna
    • Meaning:

      "God is gracious"
    • Description:

      A Top 100 name from the 1930s all the way through the 1950s, it's now firmly in Mom -- or Grandma -- land and supplanted for babies by Joanna.....or even great-grandmother Josephine. In its heyday, it had a host of variations, including JoAnn and Jo-Anne.
  14. Ardith
    • Origin:

      Hebrew
    • Meaning:

      "flowering field"
    • Description:

      Ethereal combination of Arden and Edith, with a sweet naturey meaning.
  15. Claudine
    • Origin:

      French feminine variation of Claude
    • Description:

      There are much chicer versions of this name today, such as Claudie, Claudia, or Claude itself. Claudine is a name wobbling on the edge of extinction.
  16. Huey
    • Origin:

      Variation of Hugh, English
    • Meaning:

      "mind, intellect"
    • Description:

      Once upon a time, in the 1930s, Huey (yes, just Huey) was a Top 250 name. Could the 100-Year Rule bring it back?
  17. Nila
    • Origin:

      Indian, Tamil and Hindi
    • Meaning:

      "dark blue"
    • Description:

      A sweet, simple Sanskrit name which would work in many languages and has an sparkling, colorful meaning.
  18. Farrell
    • Origin:

      Irish
    • Meaning:

      "courageous"
    • Description:

      If you're looking for a pleasing namesake that's more modern than Darrell/Darryl, this would make an excellent choice. Farrell is an Anglicized form of the Irish Fergal, and was well used as a first name into the nineteenth century, before it faded to mostly surname use.
  19. Marlin
    • Elida