Name Help: Not Logan JrName Help is a series at Appellation Mountain. Every week, one reader’s name questions will be discussed.

We’re relying on thoughtful comments from the community to help expectant parents narrow down their name decisions. Thank you in advance for sharing your insight!

Savannah writes:

My boyfriend and I are expecting our first child next month. He’s stuck on having a junior, and I just can’t do it.

Maybe, maybe if he had a different name I’d consider it. Like a name that could have two nicknames for dad/son. But his name is Logan, and his middle name is Lee.

The names I’ve suggested (so far) are Wells, Banks, Grey, Granger, Grayer, Grayson, Ledger, Baylor, Wesson, and Truett.

He keeps just going back to Logan.

The baby’s last name will be H@rkins.


Please read on for my response and leave your thoughtful suggestions in the comments.

Abby replies:

Congratulations on your new son!

First, know that you are not alone.

Otherwise reasonable men sometimes dig their heels in when it comes to passing down their names. And they’ve been doing it forever. It’s not an unreasonable impulse, either. Family names have their strengths, and they can be great choices – sometimes.

But here’s the thing: he wants a junior, but you do not. Therefore, you will not be naming your son Logan Junior. And I’m certain, that if he really thinks about it, he’ll acknowledge that it’s not fair to try to strong arm your partner into ANY name.

Tell him I said so.

I’ll wait.

Now, how DO you move forward?

There’s one obvious, workable compromise in this case:

Move Logan to the middle spot and agree that you need to choose a first name you both like.

After all, I’m guessing H@rkins is your boyfriend’s last name. That means that two out of three of your son’s names come from his side. A jointly-chosen first just barely re-balances the equation.

It sounds like you haven’t talked about your list of names much, so let’s take a look at it now.

Wells and Banks are great names, but I’m not sure about the -s ending with your child’s surname. Wells H@rkins is … okay, not great.

Ledger, Granger, Grayer, and Baylor also seem less than ideal to my ear. The -r ending catches just a little with H@rkins. Not in a dealbreaker way, but if they’re not favorites, i’d probably move on. But maybe not, because while Baylor H@rkins is really a tongue-twister for me, Grayer H@arkins sounds perfectly fine. Call it something to think about, and say your son’s name five times fast before committing.

That leaves Wesson, Truett, and Grey/Grayson from the long list of Gray names.

I think all of them work really well with your surname, and they’re all similar in style – contemporary choices with history and style.

When I put them with Logan as a middle name, though?

  • WESSON LOGAN H@RKINS I’m not wild about the repeating -n endings. It’s okay, not great.
  • TRUETT LOGAN H@RKINS While they’re all two-syllable names, I think the varied endings make this sound appealing. Also, the nickname True for Truett has lots of appeal.
  • GREY LOGAN H@RKINS This works! The shorter first name balances the longer middle.
  • GRAYSON LOGAN H@RKINS – I’ll raise the same concern as with Wesson. It’s a sort of repetitive ending. And yet, if you plan to call your son Gray (Grey?) then maybe it works just fine.

In fact, I’m tempting to suggest Grayson (or Greyson) called Gray (or Grey). It’s a mainstream favorite, and the choice gives you some flexibility between the longer first name and the shorter nickname. While it’s not ideal with Logan as a middle name, I think it works just fine. And it’s clear that you’re strongly drawn to the Gray sound.

My second choice is Truett, Overall, I think it’s a better combination. But that’s not always the only consideration, and so I’ll rank it a close second.

Of course, once you start talking about names, it’s perfectly possible that your Logan has a great suggestion or three himself. And if what he’s really saying is that he’s interested in family names? Then it’s worth considering ones that you do agree would be great for your son – and I’d push for a name from your family tree, if that’s at all possible.

Readers, over to you – what would you suggest as a substitute for Logan?

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. Congratulations!
    Maybe you could also honor you in his name- Savannah is a city in Georgia. So maybe-

    George Logan H@rkins

    Just an idea 🙂 Best of Luck!

  2. Perhaps you need to gain an idea of what your boyfriend’s naming style actually is (apart from wanting a Logan Junior). Could you ask him, what if we were having twin boys? Or if you already had a son named Logan Junior? What would you want to name this son? If you can find out what other names he likes, you might be able to reach a compromise more easily.

  3. One line of my family did this, which has worked really well (names changed, but you get the idea!):

    Henry John Smith, called Henry/Hank (grandfather)
    Henry Robert Smith, called Robert (son)
    Henry Robert Micheal Smith, called Mike (grandson)

    So far the “grandson” only has daughters, but I’d be curious if he’d pass on the tradition to a son!

    This could be a fun tradition to start!

    I really like Logan Grey H@rkins, called Grey! Logan Truett H@rkins called True is so fun too! And I like that True rhymes with Two, which makes him Dad’s junior or Number Two ☺️

  4. What about Grant Logan H@rkins? If he isn’t into Gray, Grant may fit.

    I also wondered about using the letters of Logan… Langdon was all I came up with. Langdon Grayson H@rkins is pretty awesome.

  5. My first thought was to use Logan as the first name, but choose a middle name you love and call him by that eg Logan Grey H@rkins, called Grey. I know it can present some hassles, but dad would have his name in the first position, and you get to call him by the name you love.

    Otherwise you could use Logan Lee as a double middle? Wells Logan Lee H@rkins?

    My next thought was a name that rhymes with Logan that might be more your style. Brogan seems like it could fit in with your list of favourites. There’s also Hogan or Rogan.

    It also jumped out at me that a lot of your favourite names share letter with Logan. A combination like Granger Leo or Grayson Lee contains all the letters of Logan Lee, just rearranged. Ledger also shares the sounds of Logan, and a combo like Ledger Rowan uses all the letters.

  6. Just in case another few names might help get the convo rolling:
    Graham Logan
    Abram Lee
    Everett Logan
    Linden Luke (then dad & baby can have the same initials?)
    Landry Greyson

  7. I agree with Abby here. If you don’t like Logan Jr at all then it’s off the table and it’s time to find a compromise.

    Maybe you can compromise with a name that shares a similar sound to Logan? Or has a similar Celtic vibe? Or starts with an L? (Some of the below names check a few of these boxes!)

    Grady (LOVE this one for you!)

    Logan Lee is fun and alliterative. Maybe an alliterative combo for the baby could tie in the similarities with dad’s name.

    Grady is my favorite for you. It’s surnamey like Ledger, Wells, Banks but shares similar sounds to Granger, Grayson, and Grayer, but feels a bit cowboy like Wesson, Baylor, Truett, and it’s Celtic just like dad’s name!

    Grady Garrett, Grady George, Grady Gavin are all so handsome and alliterative just like dad’s name as well. I think Grady is a great compromise!

    Congrats on your new baby and good luck!

  8. Ooh @Iris I love your idea of Leo!! Twists on family names could be your naming style. If I was feeling generous and wanted to find a new way to ‘junior’ the name, I’d suggest other Lo- or Gan-names in your style preference too: Lowell, Lochlan, Loic, Loki, Lou, Locke, Loyal, Gannon. Love the sound of Lowell H@rkins! Or continue the -an shared in both of your names and name him Ansel or Anthem etc…

    But I’d push further and ensure the middle name comes from your side! Whether that’s your surname or another option.

    Would he have wanted a Junior if she’d been a girl? If the answer is no, I’d really have zero patience for his insistence.

  9. Some ideas (after making sure he understands he can’t choose a name you don’t want):
    Leo Logan – a twist on his name