Most popular names in America in the last century

“Over the last 100 years, the male name Michael has held the top spot most often (44 times), while the female name Mary has been ranked number one 41 times over those years,” according to the Social Security Administration.

There haven’t been too many girls names topping the charts in the past century. There’s only been ten: Emma (2014, 2008), Sophia (2011-13), Isabella (2009-10), Emily (1996-2007), Jessica (1985-90, 1993-95), Ashley (1991-92), Jennifer (1970-84), Lisa (1962-69), Mary (1915-1946, 1953-61), Linda (1947-52).

For guys, there are even fewer that ranked as number one. These seven are the only names that make that list:

Noah (2013-14), Jacob (1999-2012), Michael (1954-59, 1961-1998), David (1960), Robert (1924-39, 1953), James (1940-52), John 1915-23).

For a look at the five most frequent given names for male and female babies born in each year 1915-2014, check out this table from the SSA.


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