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Most popular baby names of every year since 1915

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The most popular baby name of every year since 1915

If you’ve ever resented your parents because your classmates called you “John P.” as opposed to “John” or “Anna W.” instead of “Anna,” consider that they may have just been looking out for your best interest. Part of the psychology that goes into naming a child is a phenomenon known as the “playground effect,” the way in which parents consider how their child’s name would influence his or her popularity amongst peers. Because of the vicious social warzones schools can be, many parents shy away from unique names and those who do choose abnormal spellings typically regret it down the line, as was revealed by a survey of 3,000 parents.

As such, it makes sense that over time the majority of American parents have gone for the same select few names year in and year out. Since 1915 there have only been eight male names and 10 female names that have taken the top spot annually for their respective national ranks. Of those 18, 16 have sustained their reign at the top for multiple years, indicating that when a new name amasses a great deal of popularity society clings to it for quite some time.

Using data from the Social Security Administration, Stacker found the three most popular male and female names in the United States from every year since 1915. The top names for every year are ranked according to the total number of babies born with that name in that year.

Read on to see if your name was amongst the most popular for the past 100 years.

RELATED: Fastest growing baby names of the last 50 years

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Shutterstock

1915-1919

#1 boys' name: John
#2 boys' name: William
#3 boys' name: James

#1 girls' name: Mary
#2 girls' name: Helen
#3 girls' name: Dorothy

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Shutterstock

1920

#1 boys' name: John
#2 boys' name: William
#3 boys' name: Robert

#1 girls' name: Mary
#2 girls' name: Dorothy
#3 girls' name: Helen

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Shutterstock

1921-1923

#1 boys' name: John
#2 boys' name: Robert
#3 boys' name: William

#1 girls' name: Mary
#2 girls' name: Dorothy
#3 girls' name: Helen

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Shutterstock

1924

#1 boys' name: Robert
#2 boys' name: John
#3 boys' name: William

#1 girls' name: Mary
#2 girls' name: Dorothy
#3 girls' name: Helen

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Shutterstock

1925

#1 boys' name: Robert
#2 boys' name: John
#3 boys' name: William

#1 girls' name: Mary
#2 girls' name: Dorothy
#3 girls' name: Betty

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Shutterstock

1926-1927

#1 boys' name: Robert
#2 boys' name: John
#3 boys' name: James

#1 girls' name: Mary
#2 girls' name: Dorothy
#3 girls' name: Betty

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1928

#1 boys' name: Robert
#2 boys' name: John
#3 boys' name: James

#1 girls' name: Mary
#2 girls' name: Betty
#3 girls' name: Dorothy

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1929-1931

#1 boys' name: Robert
#2 boys' name: James
#3 boys' name: John

#1 girls' name: Mary
#2 girls' name: Betty
#3 girls' name: Dorothy

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Shutterstock

1932-1934

#1 boys' name: Robert
#2 boys' name: James
#3 boys' name: John

#1 girls' name: Mary
#2 girls' name: Betty
#3 girls' name: Barbara

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Shutterstock

1935-1936

#1 boys' name: Robert
#2 boys' name: James
#3 boys' name: John

#1 girls' name: Mary
#2 girls' name: Shirley
#3 girls' name: Barbara

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Shutterstock

1937-1939

#1 boys' name: Robert
#2 boys' name: James
#3 boys' name: John

#1 girls' name: Mary
#2 girls' name: Barbara
#3 girls' name: Patricia

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Shutterstock

1940-1943

#1 boys' name: James
#2 boys' name: Robert
#3 boys' name: John

#1 girls' name: Mary
#2 girls' name: Barbara
#3 girls' name: Patricia

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Shutterstock

1944

#1 boys' name: James
#2 boys' name: Robert
#3 boys' name: John

#1 girls' name: Mary
#2 girls' name: Barbara
#3 girls' name: Linda

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Shutterstock

1945

#1 boys' name: James
#2 boys' name: Robert
#3 boys' name: John

#1 girls' name: Mary
#2 girls' name: Linda
#3 girls' name: Barbara

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Shutterstock

1946

#1 boys' name: James
#2 boys' name: Robert
#3 boys' name: John

#1 girls' name: Mary
#2 girls' name: Linda
#3 girls' name: Patricia

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Shutterstock

1947

#1 boys' name: James
#2 boys' name: Robert
#3 boys' name: John

#1 girls' name: Linda
#2 girls' name: Mary
#3 girls' name: Patricia

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Shutterstock

1948

#1 boys' name: James
#2 boys' name: Robert
#3 boys' name: John

#1 girls' name: Linda
#2 girls' name: Mary
#3 girls' name: Barbara

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Shutterstock

1949-1952

#1 boys' name: James
#2 boys' name: Robert
#3 boys' name: John

#1 girls' name: Linda
#2 girls' name: Mary
#3 girls' name: Patricia

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Shutterstock

1953

#1 boys' name: Robert
#2 boys' name: James
#3 boys' name: Michael

#1 girls' name: Mary
#2 girls' name: Linda
#3 girls' name: Deborah

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Shutterstock

1954

#1 boys' name: Michael
#2 boys' name: James
#3 boys' name: Robert

#1 girls' name: Mary
#2 girls' name: Linda
#3 girls' name: Deborah

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Shutterstock

1955

#1 boys' name: Michael
#2 boys' name: David
#3 boys' name: James

#1 girls' name: Mary
#2 girls' name: Deborah
#3 girls' name: Linda

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Shutterstock

1956

#1 boys' name: Michael
#2 boys' name: James
#3 boys' name: Robert

#1 girls' name: Mary
#2 girls' name: Debra
#3 girls' name: Linda

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1957

#1 boys' name: Michael
#2 boys' name: James
#3 boys' name: David

#1 girls' name: Mary
#2 girls' name: Susan
#3 girls' name: Linda

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Shutterstock

1958-1959

#1 boys' name: Michael
#2 boys' name: David
#3 boys' name: James

#1 girls' name: Mary
#2 girls' name: Susan
#3 girls' name: Linda

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Shutterstock

1960

#1 boys' name: David
#2 boys' name: Michael
#3 boys' name: James

#1 girls' name: Mary
#2 girls' name: Susan
#3 girls' name: Linda

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Shutterstock

1961

#1 boys' name: Michael
#2 boys' name: David
#3 boys' name: John

#1 girls' name: Mary
#2 girls' name: Lisa
#3 girls' name: Susan

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Shutterstock

1962

#1 boys' name: Michael
#2 boys' name: David
#3 boys' name: John

#1 girls' name: Lisa
#2 girls' name: Mary
#3 girls' name: Susan

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Shutterstock

1963-1964

#1 boys' name: Michael
#2 boys' name: John
#3 boys' name: David

#1 girls' name: Lisa
#2 girls' name: Mary
#3 girls' name: Susan

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Evgeny Atamanenko // Shutterstock

1965

#1 boys' name: Michael
#2 boys' name: John
#3 boys' name: David

#1 girls' name: Lisa
#2 girls' name: Mary
#3 girls' name: Karen

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takayuki // Shutterstock

1966

#1 boys' name: Michael
#2 boys' name: David
#3 boys' name: James

#1 girls' name: Lisa
#2 girls' name: Kimberly
#3 girls' name: Mary

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Pshenina_m // Shutterstock

1967

#1 boys' name: Michael
#2 boys' name: David
#3 boys' name: James

#1 girls' name: Lisa
#2 girls' name: Kimberly
#3 girls' name: Michelle

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Syda Productions // Shutterstock

1968

#1 boys' name: Michael
#2 boys' name: David
#3 boys' name: John

#1 girls' name: Lisa
#2 girls' name: Michelle
#3 girls' name: Kimberly

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Oksana Kuzmina // Shutterstock

1969

#1 boys' name: Michael
#2 boys' name: David
#3 boys' name: James

#1 girls' name: Lisa
#2 girls' name: Michelle
#3 girls' name: Jennifer

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Zdenka Darula // Shutterstock

1970

#1 boys' name: Michael
#2 boys' name: James
#3 boys' name: David

#1 girls' name: Jennifer
#2 girls' name: Lisa
#3 girls' name: Kimberly

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FamVeld // Shutterstock

1971

#1 boys' name: Michael
#2 boys' name: James
#3 boys' name: David

#1 girls' name: Jennifer
#2 girls' name: Michelle
#3 girls' name: Lisa

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Pakhnyushchy // Shutterstock

1972

#1 boys' name: Michael
#2 boys' name: Christopher
#3 boys' name: James

#1 girls' name: Jennifer
#2 girls' name: Michelle
#3 girls' name: Lisa

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riggleton // Shutterstock

1973

#1 boys' name: Michael
#2 boys' name: Christopher
#3 boys' name: Jason

#1 girls' name: Jennifer
#2 girls' name: Amy
#3 girls' name: Michelle

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Krisda Ponchaipulltawee // Shutterstock

1974

#1 boys' name: Michael
#2 boys' name: Jason
#3 boys' name: Christopher

#1 girls' name: Jennifer
#2 girls' name: Amy
#3 girls' name: Michelle

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Africa Studio // Shutterstock

1975

#1 boys' name: Michael
#2 boys' name: Jason
#3 boys' name: Christopher

#1 girls' name: Jennifer
#2 girls' name: Amy
#3 girls' name: Heather

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Oksana Kuzmina // Shutterstock

1976

#1 boys' name: Michael
#2 boys' name: Jason
#3 boys' name: Christopher

#1 girls' name: Jennifer
#2 girls' name: Amy
#3 girls' name: Melissa

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Lipatova Maryna // Shutterstock

1977

#1 boys' name: Michael
#2 boys' name: Jason
#3 boys' name: Christopher

#1 girls' name: Jennifer
#2 girls' name: Melissa
#3 girls' name: Amy

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burlakova_anna // Shutterstock

1978

#1 boys' name: Michael
#2 boys' name: Jason
#3 boys' name: Christopher

#1 girls' name: Jennifer
#2 girls' name: Melissa
#3 girls' name: Jessica

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FamVeld // Shutterstock

1979

#1 boys' name: Michael
#2 boys' name: Christopher
#3 boys' name: Jason

#1 girls' name: Jennifer
#2 girls' name: Melissa
#3 girls' name: Amanda

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pratan ounpitipong // Shutterstock

1980

#1 boys' name: Michael
#2 boys' name: Christopher
#3 boys' name: Jason

#1 girls' name: Jennifer
#2 girls' name: Amanda
#3 girls' name: Jessica

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Africa Studio // Shutterstock

1981-1983

#1 boys' name: Michael
#2 boys' name: Christopher
#3 boys' name: Matthew

#1 girls' name: Jennifer
#2 girls' name: Jessica
#3 girls' name: Amanda

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Alena Vostrikova // Shutterstock

1984

#1 boys' name: Michael
#2 boys' name: Christopher
#3 boys' name: Matthew

#1 girls' name: Jennifer
#2 girls' name: Jessica
#3 girls' name: Ashley

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STANZI // Shutterstock

1985

#1 boys' name: Michael
#2 boys' name: Christopher
#3 boys' name: Matthew

#1 girls' name: Jessica
#2 girls' name: Ashley
#3 girls' name: Jennifer

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Anna Grigorjeva // Shutterstock

1986-1988

#1 boys' name: Michael
#2 boys' name: Christopher
#3 boys' name: Matthew

#1 girls' name: Jessica
#2 girls' name: Ashley
#3 girls' name: Amanda

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Oksana Kuzmina // Shutterstock

1989-1990

#1 boys' name: Michael
#2 boys' name: Christopher
#3 boys' name: Matthew

#1 girls' name: Jessica
#2 girls' name: Ashley
#3 girls' name: Brittany

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Olena Zaskochenko // Shutterstock

1991

#1 boys' name: Michael
#2 boys' name: Christopher
#3 boys' name: Matthew

#1 girls' name: Ashley
#2 girls' name: Jessica
#3 girls' name: Brittany

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showice // Shutterstock

1992

#1 boys' name: Michael
#2 boys' name: Christopher
#3 boys' name: Matthew

#1 girls' name: Ashley
#2 girls' name: Jessica
#3 girls' name: Amanda

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FamVeld // Shutterstock

1993

#1 boys' name: Michael
#2 boys' name: Christopher
#3 boys' name: Matthew

#1 girls' name: Jessica
#2 girls' name: Ashley
#3 girls' name: Sarah

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AlexAnnaButs // Shutterstock

1994

#1 boys' name: Michael
#2 boys' name: Christopher
#3 boys' name: Matthew

#1 girls' name: Jessica
#2 girls' name: Ashley
#3 girls' name: Emily

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2xSamara.com // Shutterstock

1995

#1 boys' name: Michael
#2 boys' name: Matthew
#3 boys' name: Christopher

#1 girls' name: Jessica
#2 girls' name: Ashley
#3 girls' name: Emily

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komokvm // Shutterstock

1996

#1 boys' name: Michael
#2 boys' name: Matthew
#3 boys' name: Jacob

#1 girls' name: Emily
#2 girls' name: Jessica
#3 girls' name: Ashley

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Troscha // Shutterstock

1997

#1 boys' name: Michael
#2 boys' name: Jacob
#3 boys' name: Matthew

#1 girls' name: Emily
#2 girls' name: Jessica
#3 girls' name: Ashley

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FamVeld // Shutterstock

1998

#1 boys' name: Michael
#2 boys' name: Jacob
#3 boys' name: Matthew

#1 girls' name: Emily
#2 girls' name: Hannah
#3 girls' name: Samantha

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Dmitry Lobanov // Shutterstock

1999

#1 boys' name: Jacob
#2 boys' name: Michael
#3 boys' name: Matthew

#1 girls' name: Emily
#2 girls' name: Hannah
#3 girls' name: Alexis

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ucchie79 // Shutterstock

2000

#1 boys' name: Jacob
#2 boys' name: Michael
#3 boys' name: Matthew

#1 girls' name: Emily
#2 girls' name: Hannah
#3 girls' name: Madison

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czechbest // Shutterstock

2001

#1 boys' name: Jacob
#2 boys' name: Michael
#3 boys' name: Matthew

#1 girls' name: Emily
#2 girls' name: Madison
#3 girls' name: Hannah

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2xSamara.com // Shutterstock

2002

#1 boys' name: Jacob
#2 boys' name: Michael
#3 boys' name: Joshua

#1 girls' name: Emily
#2 girls' name: Madison
#3 girls' name: Hannah

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Elvira Koneva // Shutterstock

2003-2006

#1 boys' name: Jacob
#2 boys' name: Michael
#3 boys' name: Joshua

#1 girls' name: Emily
#2 girls' name: Emma
#3 girls' name: Madison

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Natalia Deriabina // Shutterstock

2007

#1 boys' name: Jacob
#2 boys' name: Michael
#3 boys' name: Ethan

#1 girls' name: Emily
#2 girls' name: Isabella
#3 girls' name: Emma

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Gelpi // Shutterstock

2008

#1 boys' name: Jacob
#2 boys' name: Michael
#3 boys' name: Ethan

#1 girls' name: Emma
#2 girls' name: Isabella
#3 girls' name: Emily

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Bogdan Vija // Shutterstock

2009

#1 boys' name: Jacob
#2 boys' name: Ethan
#3 boys' name: Michael

#1 girls' name: Isabella
#2 girls' name: Emma
#3 girls' name: Olivia

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DONOT6_STUDIO // Shutterstock

2010

#1 boys' name: Jacob
#2 boys' name: Ethan
#3 boys' name: Michael

#1 girls' name: Isabella
#2 girls' name: Sophia
#3 girls' name: Emma

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pyrozhenka // Shutterstock

2011

#1 boys' name: Jacob
#2 boys' name: Mason
#3 boys' name: William

#1 girls' name: Sophia
#2 girls' name: Isabella
#3 girls' name: Emma

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Tatiana Chekryzhova // Shutterstock

2012

#1 boys' name: Jacob
#2 boys' name: Mason
#3 boys' name: Ethan

#1 girls' name: Sophia
#2 girls' name: Emma
#3 girls' name: Isabella

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Mallmo // Shutterstock

2013

#1 boys' name: Noah
#2 boys' name: Jacob
#3 boys' name: Liam

#1 girls' name: Sophia
#2 girls' name: Emma
#3 girls' name: Olivia

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Falcona // Shutterstock

2014-2015

#1 boys' name: Noah
#2 boys' name: Liam
#3 boys' name: Mason

#1 girls' name: Emma
#2 girls' name: Olivia
#3 girls' name: Sophia

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Michael Pettigrew // Shutterstock

2016

#1 boys' name: Noah
#2 boys' name: Liam
#3 boys' name: William

#1 girls' name: Emma
#2 girls' name: Olivia
#3 girls' name: Ava

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ucchie79 // Shutterstock

2017

#1 boys' name: Liam
#2 boys' name: Noah
#3 boys' name: William

#1 girls' name: Emma
#2 girls' name: Olivia
#3 girls' name: Ava

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