Rubik's CubeHeads up!  Next week is a special celebration of 80s baby names at Appellation Mountain.  The profiled names will be two of the most popular girls’ names and two of the most popular boys’ names from the decade.

Why?  Most new parents today were either kids during the 1980s or were born during the era.  They’re the names that we (wrongly) think of as normal names.

Plus, whenever I’ve written about them, I’ve always enjoyed hearing from those that answer to the names.  So many of you are Jennifer or Ashley.

Lastly, we often celebrate names from bygone eras – the Victorians, the 1920s, the mid-century moderns.  But it can be difficult to appreciate the choices that are so very familiar to our ears.

And so here goes 1980s week.  Please let me know what you think of it, and whether it would be worth visiting other decades to surface their most popular, most dominant names – and maybe try to fall in love with them, even if they’re not the kinds of names we’d necessarily choose for children today.

About Abby Sandel

Whether you're naming a baby, or just all about names, you've come to the right place! Appellation Mountain is a haven for lovers of obscure gems and enduring classics alike.

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What do you think?


  1. How about a “random decades” week where you randomly select a decade to do for each day? (Since the SSA list currently covers 13 decades plus the partial current one, a convenient way I found for a game I created is to use a deck of cards; make the face cards cover the 1880s-1900s, Aces the 1910s, 2-9 the corresponding decades from the 1920s-1990s, and 10s the 2000s. Black cards are for boys and red ones are for girls. Draw however many cards for the number of names you want to cover.)

  2. This is a great idea! Keep the decades coming, please. I’m particularly interested in the 70’s.

  3. I’d like to see more weeks themed around a particular decade or time period. I’m now 40 and realizing that the names that sound fresh vs. dated to me are most probably perceived quite differently by name enthusiasts 15 or 20 years younger than I am. The older I get, the more fascinated I become with trends, in names and other things. Do it! 😀

  4. I like this idea. I tend to like names from all periods, even the 80s. So I think you definitely should profile some names from other decades.