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Explore the Ultimate US Name Map

May 7, 2020 namerology 14 Comments

Explore the Ultimate US Name Map

May 7, 2020 Namerology 14 Comments
Map showing state-by-state popularity of names ending in -TT

Interested in names, and America? Roll up your sleeves. Namerology’s new interactive map of the United States lets you explore name style from coast to coast, and from Aaden to Zyra.

Just start typing letters in the search box on the upper left, and the map will instantly show you naming patterns. You can look for individual names, letter strings, initials, or name endings like the -TT names shown above. Or try a unisex name like Parker and switch back and forth between girls and boys to see how the geographic patterns differ.

Happy name hunting! And as you make discoveries, please come back here to share them in comments.

>>Go to the Ultimate US Name Map!


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  • alex May 8, 2020 at 2:48 am

    I love this! Truly amazing work. I’ve spent some time playing with this and know I’ll be back for hours more.

    One piece of feedback: for states along the bottom edge of the map, the list of names is cut off — you might see none (for Hawaii) or only a couple (for Florida). I’m at 100% screen zoom and using Chrome.

    • Namerology
      Namerology May 8, 2020 at 2:50 am

      Thanks Alex, we’ve adjusted the mouseovers to fix that!

  • Penguinmom May 11, 2020 at 1:16 am

    I started off by seeing where various letter endings are popular, starting with just the alphabet and branching out with different blends of endings as the ideas struck me.

    -b names (dominated by Jacob and Caleb and its variants) are very popular in Utah and also somewhat in New Hampshire.

    South Dakota really doesn’t like -rd names compared to everywhere else.

    -l looks different than -ll

    -o is very Southwestern.

    -ee and -ei are similar

    Wyoming doesn’t like -w names.

    -x is almost symmetrical.

    The Southwest doesn’t like -y, -ey, -ie, or -ee names, but does like -i names, particularly for girls.

    Louisiana has the most popular endings out of any of the states for -z, -j, and -q.

    • Namerology
      Namerology May 11, 2020 at 5:24 pm

      I love mousing over the -x map — I think it’s a great shorthand portrait of cultural differences. E.g. in California the top 3 -x names are Alex, Max and Felix. In Tennessee they’re Knox, Maddox and Phoenix.

  • Jamie
    Jamie May 11, 2020 at 10:13 pm

    Anyone else having trouble posting in the forum? It seems to log me out whenever I try to go to a forum and start a new topic.

    • HungarianNameGeek
      HungarianNameGeek May 13, 2020 at 4:36 am

      The forum login issue is an ongoing known problem. It affects a couple of our moderators, among others.

      • LauraWattenberg
        LauraWattenberg May 13, 2020 at 2:43 pm

        Yes, I’m continuing to work with the software provider on it! It’s tricky because it’s inconsistent, so they keep thinking they’ve solved it but it turns out they just didn’t hit the problem that time. (And yes, I’m also researching software alternatives!)

        • AnotherLaura
          AnotherLaura May 15, 2020 at 6:30 pm

          Yes, I was just coming to comment that I still haven’t been able to post on the forums. I’ve been trying off and on for the last couple of months.

  • holey
    holey May 13, 2020 at 3:52 am

    This is great! I’m a little confused about the numbers I get when I mouse over a state. For example, if I do an exact match on Leo, North Dakota is redder than Utah. However, if I divide the Count by the Per Million number, I get a higher result for Utah. I’m pretty sure I’m just not understanding exactly what the Per Million number means.

    The coloring is a bit counterintuitive for me. Before looking at the key, I thought red represented the lower numbers – I guess because I see red as implying something negative, or an absence. I definitely see the reasoning for red representing a higher concentration, though, like a heat map.

    • LauraWattenberg
      LauraWattenberg May 13, 2020 at 2:59 pm

      @Holey, you’re right that the shading and the per-million counts are a bit different. The shading represents the ratio of number of babies matching the search vs. the total babies in that state’s *name data set*, while the per-million is a ratio vs. the total number of *births* in the state. The reason for the difference is that the shading is optimized to allow cross-state comparisons in multi-name searches, where the number of different names found varies tremendously with the state population. (The map FAQ goes into that more.) Meanwhile the per-million counts are designed to put an individual name’s local popularity in context.

      And I sometimes get confused by the coloring too! The trick is that red has two different canonical meanings in visualizations. This, as you say, is essentially a heat map, where red=MORE. But in some contexts, especially financial, red=NEGATIVE, as in red ink. (E.g. this map of the stock market my husband designed back in the day.) For names, the heat map seemed like the more natural metaphor, especially since there’s no inherent positive/negative, just more/less.

  • holey
    holey May 13, 2020 at 4:04 am

    Audr- vs. Aubr- for girls is an interesting comparison.

  • 4names4life
    4names4life May 13, 2020 at 5:31 pm

    Here’s a fun contrast: boys’ names ending in -an are somewhat concentrated in California and on the East Coast. Switch to boys’ names ending in -yn and the South and Midwest light up! Same sound, different spelling, totally different pattern.

  • Shea August 16, 2023 at 2:28 am

    A bit confused on what it means if I search a name and it comes up “none”. Does that mean not one single baby was named that in the USA recently?

    • Namerology
      Namerology August 19, 2023 at 6:11 pm

      Thanks for asking, this is a good point to clarify! In this map a “none” (i.e. no records found or no data available) means that last year, no individual state had 5 or more new babies with that name.

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