These Are The Most Popular Baby Names In The Northeast

When it comes to baby name trends, there are regional differences. (Photo: Nancy Brown via Getty Images)
When it comes to baby name trends, there are regional differences. (Photo: Nancy Brown via Getty Images)

The Social Security Administration’s list of most popular baby names in the U.S. doesn’t have many surprising rankings, but there are some interesting trends on the regional level.

Take the Northeast, for example. Looking at the most recent SSA data from 2017, we identified the most popular baby names for boys and girls born in Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island and Vermont (the states the Census Bureau defines as the Northeast).

While there was much overlap between the Northeast rankings and national data, there were also points of divergence. On the regional list, Emily sits at No. 10; it’s No. 12 on the U.S. list. Meanwhile, nationally ranked No. 9, Evelyn, falls out of the Top 10, sitting at No. 13 in the Northeast rankings. Leah, Sarah and Gabriella are also more popular in the region (where they rank at Nos. 18, 29 and 32, respectively) than in the U.S. as a whole (where they fall at Nos. 40, 52 and 68).

The Top 10 national and regional lists look quite different when it comes to popular names for boys. In the Northeast, Jacob ranks No. 3, Lucas is No. 5, Michael is No. 6 and Joseph is No. 10, but nationally, those names fall at Nos. 10, 11, 12 and 19, respectively. Other names, like Ryan, have an even more dramatic contrast in ranking ― Ryan is No. 15 in the Northeast vs. No. 43 in the U.S.

Below, find the top 35 boys’ and girls’ names for Northeast babies. For more data and state-by-state breakdowns, visit the SSA website.

Girls

  1. Emma

  2. Olivia

  3. Ava

  4. Sophia

  5. Isabella

  6. Charlotte

  7. Mia

  8. Amelia

  9. Abigail

  10. Emily

  11. Ella

  12. Madison

  13. Evelyn

  14. Harper

  15. Grace

  16. Avery

  17. Elizabeth

  18. Leah

  19. Scarlett

  20. Sofia

  21. Riley

  22. Chloe

  23. Aria

  24. Nora

  25. Hannah

  26. Victoria

  27. Penelope

  28. Lily

  29. Sarah

  30. Savannah

  31. Layla

  32. Gabriella

  33. Natalie

  34. Mila

  35. Zoe

Boys

  1. Liam

  2. Noah

  3. Jacob

  4. Logan

  5. Lucas

  6. Michael

  7. Benjamin

  8. Mason

  9. James

  10. Joseph

  11. Matthew

  12. Ethan

  13. Alexander

  14. William

  15. Ryan

  16. Daniel

  17. Dylan

  18. Oliver

  19. Anthony

  20. David

  21. John

  22. Aiden

  23. Jack

  24. Jackson

  25. Henry

  26. Owen

  27. Samuel

  28. Jayden

  29. Carter

  30. Gabriel

  31. Thomas

  32. Elijah

  33. Joshua

  34. Julian

  35. Christopher

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Bogan

Louise Bogan was the fourth Poet Laureate of the United States and the first woman to be appointed to that position, appreciated for her subtle intellectual style.  Bogan could be a perfectly acceptable companion to boy named Brogan, Logan and Hogan--though Bogan does have some negative connotations in Australian slang.
Louise Bogan was the fourth Poet Laureate of the United States and the first woman to be appointed to that position, appreciated for her subtle intellectual style. Bogan could be a perfectly acceptable companion to boy named Brogan, Logan and Hogan--though Bogan does have some negative connotations in Australian slang.

Byron

George Gordon Byron, known simply as Lord Byron, was a (if not the) leading Romantic poet of the late eighteenth to early nineteenth century, with the term 'byronic' coming to connote romanticism, melancholy and melodrama.  The name Byron still retains something of the poet's dramatic, windswept image.
George Gordon Byron, known simply as Lord Byron, was a (if not the) leading Romantic poet of the late eighteenth to early nineteenth century, with the term 'byronic' coming to connote romanticism, melancholy and melodrama. The name Byron still retains something of the poet's dramatic, windswept image.

Chaucer

Geoffrey Chaucer is regarded as the greatest literary figure of medieval England, the father of all the literature that followed.  An unusual English occupational name -- it means "maker of leggings"-- Chaucer has a particularly pleasing sound and is beginning to stir up some interest among knowledgeable parents.
Geoffrey Chaucer is regarded as the greatest literary figure of medieval England, the father of all the literature that followed. An unusual English occupational name -- it means "maker of leggings"-- Chaucer has a particularly pleasing sound and is beginning to stir up some interest among knowledgeable parents.

Cullen

Countee Cullen was one of the key poetic voice of the Harlem Renaissance. Although his first name is semi-unique, the surname Cullen is one of the hot Irish boys' names, propelled by its appearance as the family name of key character Edward in the "Twilight" series of books and movies. Cullen now ranks at an all-time high of Number 413.
Countee Cullen was one of the key poetic voice of the Harlem Renaissance. Although his first name is semi-unique, the surname Cullen is one of the hot Irish boys' names, propelled by its appearance as the family name of key character Edward in the "Twilight" series of books and movies. Cullen now ranks at an all-time high of Number 413.

Dove

Rita Dove is a major contemporary American poet, winner of a Pulitzer Prize and Poet Laureate of the United States from 1993 to 1995. The name Dove is one of several soft and gentle bird names, including Wren and Lark, that have become a fledgling category--as opposed to more aggressive avian choices like Hawk and Falcon.
Rita Dove is a major contemporary American poet, winner of a Pulitzer Prize and Poet Laureate of the United States from 1993 to 1995. The name Dove is one of several soft and gentle bird names, including Wren and Lark, that have become a fledgling category--as opposed to more aggressive avian choices like Hawk and Falcon.

John Dryden

John Dryden was a highly influential seventeenth century English poet in what came to be called "The Age of Dryden."  Dryden is a name that could blend well with all the Ryders and Brydens in the playground, with its poetic cred adding a subtle support.
John Dryden was a highly influential seventeenth century English poet in what came to be called "The Age of Dryden." Dryden is a name that could blend well with all the Ryders and Brydens in the playground, with its poetic cred adding a subtle support.

Frost

Robert Frost is the acclaimed poet who famously read his work at the 1961 Inauguration of President Kennedy.  Frost, Snow, Winter, January... these are all among the coolest current choices, and the literary tie to the esteemed poet makes Frost all the more appealing.
Robert Frost is the acclaimed poet who famously read his work at the 1961 Inauguration of President Kennedy. Frost, Snow, Winter, January... these are all among the coolest current choices, and the literary tie to the esteemed poet makes Frost all the more appealing.

Giovanni

Nikki Giovanni (born Yolande Cornelia) is a contemporary African-American poet and civil rights activist whose work reflects strong racial pride. Giovanni, the ubiquitous Italian version of John, now ranks at an all-time high of Number 114 in the US, indicating that its one of the Latin names catching on among Anglos, much like Matteo and Gianna.
Nikki Giovanni (born Yolande Cornelia) is a contemporary African-American poet and civil rights activist whose work reflects strong racial pride. Giovanni, the ubiquitous Italian version of John, now ranks at an all-time high of Number 114 in the US, indicating that its one of the Latin names catching on among Anglos, much like Matteo and Gianna.

Hugo

Victor Hugo, the author of "Les Miserables" and "The Hunchback of Notre Dame," first found fame as a poet.   Hugo is a rising o-ending name for boys here, and also in Spain and France, where it's in the Top 10. Hugo was the name chosen by Ron and Hermione for their "Harry Potter" franchise son, and it is the hero and title of the latest Martin Scorsese 3-D film.
Victor Hugo, the author of "Les Miserables" and "The Hunchback of Notre Dame," first found fame as a poet. Hugo is a rising o-ending name for boys here, and also in Spain and France, where it's in the Top 10. Hugo was the name chosen by Ron and Hermione for their "Harry Potter" franchise son, and it is the hero and title of the latest Martin Scorsese 3-D film.

Kipling

Rudyard Kipling was a memorable poet (<em>Gunga Din, Recessional</em>), as well as the author of "The Jungle Book" and "Kim."  When actress Kim Raver (the Kim connection?) named her son Leo Kipling in 2007, it put this evocative yet quirky name on the table.
Rudyard Kipling was a memorable poet (Gunga Din, Recessional), as well as the author of "The Jungle Book" and "Kim." When actress Kim Raver (the Kim connection?) named her son Leo Kipling in 2007, it put this evocative yet quirky name on the table.

Lorca

Federico Garcia Lorca was an early twentieth century poet and playwright, a tragic casualty of the Spanish civil war.  He was a favorite of fellow poet Leonard Cohen, who named his now grown daughter Lorca in his honor, thereby introducing it as a lovely new girls' name possibility.
Federico Garcia Lorca was an early twentieth century poet and playwright, a tragic casualty of the Spanish civil war. He was a favorite of fellow poet Leonard Cohen, who named his now grown daughter Lorca in his honor, thereby introducing it as a lovely new girls' name possibility.

Marlowe

Christopher Marlowe was a pre-Shakespeare poet and playwright at the forefront of the sixteenth century drama renaissance.  And of the three possible spellings of the name -- Marlo, Marlow, Marlowe -- Marlowe seems to be the current winner, and used primarily for girls; Jason Schwartzman named his baby girl Marlowe Rivers.  It's a perfect smoosh of Marley and Harlow.
Christopher Marlowe was a pre-Shakespeare poet and playwright at the forefront of the sixteenth century drama renaissance. And of the three possible spellings of the name -- Marlo, Marlow, Marlowe -- Marlowe seems to be the current winner, and used primarily for girls; Jason Schwartzman named his baby girl Marlowe Rivers. It's a perfect smoosh of Marley and Harlow.

Paz

Octavio Paz was a leading Mexican poet and polemicist, who has been called "Latin America's most scintillating poet."  Meaning peace, Paz is a Spanish unisex favorite, and is currently represented on the international screen by two attractive actresses: Paz Vega and Paz de la Huerta.
Octavio Paz was a leading Mexican poet and polemicist, who has been called "Latin America's most scintillating poet." Meaning peace, Paz is a Spanish unisex favorite, and is currently represented on the international screen by two attractive actresses: Paz Vega and Paz de la Huerta.

Tennyson

Alfred Lord Tennyson was one of the most popular English poets of all time, the Poet Laureate throughout most of Queen Victoria's reign.  Russell Crowe made the bold choice of Tennyson as the name of his first son, and you have only to hear the brawny actor speak tenderly of "Tenny" to see the great charm of the name.
Alfred Lord Tennyson was one of the most popular English poets of all time, the Poet Laureate throughout most of Queen Victoria's reign. Russell Crowe made the bold choice of Tennyson as the name of his first son, and you have only to hear the brawny actor speak tenderly of "Tenny" to see the great charm of the name.

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