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These baby names are going extinct

  • These baby names are going extinct

    When's the last time you met a child named Gladys? Wanda? Garland? Probably not in a while; these names are among many on their way out. Baby names flutter in and out of popularity like any other fashion trend: Out go Antoinette, Napoleon, and Olga, and in come Oaklynn, Kashton, and Emberly. We're also living in a time of unprecedented name diversity. Thirty years ago, 80% of all baby girls in America had one of around 100 names; now that number is over 250. Over the same period, that number for boys increased from 50 to 140. Though parents are looking wider for names to give to their babies, some didn't make the cut of the new millennium. 

    Naming your baby can be a momentous decision. The internet is rife with articles on choosing a baby name and how a particular name can have a big impact on your child’s future. Research proves that names are, in fact, important. Names can signal a person’s gender, ethnicity, and even political leanings. In some cases, baby naming can mean big business: Erfolgswelle, a Swiss company, charges clients $31,000 for an "internationally unique" name. Blogs bemoan the perceived "baby name crisis," where parents desperate for unique names create new spellings for old favorites; just look at the increasing number of names ending in "nn," like Brooklynn, Flynn, Adalynn, Finn, and Quinn. 

    While spending $31,000 for a unique baby name may not be in everyone’s budget, this list of 100 baby names that are going extinct is 100% free. Using the Social Security Administration’s historical archives of baby names, we calculated the historical average annual rank for baby names from 1880 to 2017 and then compared it to where those names placed in 2018. The list focuses on classically popular names that ranked in the top 1,500 names historically. From Wanda to Wilton, read on to find the top 50 vintage boys and girls names that are flying out of fashion.

    You may also like: Fastest growing baby names of the last 50 years

  • #50. Girl: Jean

    - Historical average rank: #504
    - Today's rank: #2,389 (75 babies born)
    - Change in rank: down 1,949 spots

  • #50. Boy: Willis

    - Historical average rank: #544
    - Today's rank: #2,373 (55 babies born)
    - Change in rank: down 1,977 spots

  • #49. Girl: Katharine

    - Historical average rank: #528
    - Today's rank: #2,916 (56 babies born)
    - Change in rank: down 1,951 spots

  • #49. Boy: Sherman

    - Historical average rank: #607
    - Today's rank: #3,154 (36 babies born)
    - Change in rank: down 2,015 spots

  • #48. Girl: Edna

    - Historical average rank: #491
    - Today's rank: #1,734 (117 babies born)
    - Change in rank: down 1,962 spots

  • #48. Boy: Bennie

    - Historical average rank: #605
    - Today's rank: #3,025 (38 babies born)
    - Change in rank: down 2,063 spots

  • #47. Girl: Irma

    - Historical average rank: #558
    - Today's rank: #3,079 (52 babies born)
    - Change in rank: down 1,968 spots

  • #47. Boy: Tommie

    - Historical average rank: #678
    - Today's rank: #2,622 (47 babies born)
    - Change in rank: down 2,071 spots

  • #46. Girl: Gladys

    - Historical average rank: #463
    - Today's rank: #3,422 (45 babies born)
    - Change in rank: down 1,990 spots

  • #46. Boy: Wilber

    - Historical average rank: #1,504
    - Today's rank: #2,826 (42 babies born)
    - Change in rank: down 2,163 spots

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