Baby names run in waves, and the data from 2009 shows that New Yorkers had definate favorites for both boy and girl babies. Based on the NYC Department of Health data, here are the most popular names city-wide. (Data isn't available by borough.)
Top Ten: Most Popular Baby Names for Girls in NYC in 2009
Top Ten: Most Popular Baby Names for Boys in NYC in 2009
Where Do New Yorkers Get Baby Names? From Pop Culture--and the Bible
1. Religion: The Bible turns out to be a major source of inspiration for baby names even in New York City. In 2009, baby New Yorkers' Old Testament Biblical names included Esther (#21) and Genesis (#43) for the girls, Joshua (#8), Jacob (#12), Elijah (#21) Noah (#30) and Jeremiah (#34) and Moshe (#42; Hebrew for Moses) for the boys. Of these names, one can safely say that most, save Jeremiah and Genesis, suggest not just mere survival, but as-big-as-Donald-Trump-or-bigger success in the face of huge odds. Jesus ranked #89, and Muhammad #111.
2. Pop Culture & Fashion:This is, after all, the Big Apple, and so there's naturally a strong secular strain in the baby-naming department.
Modeling themselves after celebrity parents Angelina Jolie and Will Smith, 880 NYC parents dubbed their baby boys Jayden, the single most popular male baby name in 2009.(Ten baby girls were also called Jayden in 2009.)
Other NYC babies were named, according to the NYC Department of Health, after various pop culture icons, including
- actresses (Scarlett and Penelope tied at #104)
- singers (Usher at #158 ranked lower than Rihanna at#107)
- athletes (Brady at #158 outflanked Peyton at #171)
- models (Iman at #147) and
- fashion designers (Chanel at #139 outclassed Armani at #150).
2009 saw the birth of 20 new boys named Elvis (#161). Twenty two infant Romeos arrived in New York in 2009, as well.
3. The Season: In 2009 New York City's population grew by 74 with seasonally-named girls: 39 Summers, 23 Autumns and 12 Winters. Curiously, the City's list did not include any babies named Spring.
Want more information? For the complete breakdown of popular baby names by ethnicity (Hispanic, Black, White, and Asian/Pacific Islander), see the NYC Department of Health data.
See the complete list of baby names for 2009 in NYC.