Picking out your baby’s name is one of the most exciting and nerve-wracking tasks as a parent. Should you go with a trendy moniker or stick with a classic?

Luckily, the Social Security Administration keeps a “popular baby name” database that may have all the answers. The SSA compiles a list of the top 1,000 names each for boys and girls every year and 1920 is no exception. So what names from a century ago still have staying power?

It’s no surprise that the popularity of certain names change over time, but it is a little astonishing to see that some names from 1920 are still alive and well today.You probably know a few Elizabeths, Annas, Evelyns and Roses.


  1. Mary
  2. Dorothy
  3. Helen
  4. Margaret
  5. Ruth
  6. Mildred
  7. Virginia
  8. Elizabeth
  9. Frances
  10. Anna
  11. Betty
  12. Evelyn
  13. Marie
  14. Doris
  15. Alice
  16. Florence
  17. Irene
  18. Lillian
  19. Louise
  20. Rose

When it comes to boys, classics like John, William, Robert, James, Charles, Thomas and Jack are just as popular today as they were then.


  1. John
  2. William
  3. Robert
  4. James
  5. Charles
  6. George
  7. Joseph
  8. Edward
  9. Frank
  10. Richard
  11. Thomas
  12. Harold
  13. Walter
  14. Paul
  15. Raymond
  16. Donald
  17. Henry
  18. Arthur
  19. Albert
  20. Jack

If you’d like to get a glimpse of the entire list from 1920, or search any other year, head to the Social Security Administration’s Popular Baby Names database.

––Karly Wood



These Billionaire Baby Names Could Set Your Baby Up for Success

What Are the Most Popular Gender-Neutral Baby Names Across the U.S.?

These Are the Most Popular Baby Names of the Decade