17 Most Popular Baby Names From the 1970s

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By Darryl Henderson

The 1970s – a decade of significant change and upheaval. There was so much happening in the 70s, from the end of the Vietnam War to Watergate and blockbusters like Star Wars. But what were people naming the next generation? Let’s find out the 17 most common baby names given in the 70s.

Jennifer

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Jennifer was a hugely popular name in the 1970s. Originating from Welsh and Cornish roots, the name means “fair one” or “white wave”. Jennifer’s prevalence throughout the 1970s influenced a surge in similar-sounding names like Jenna and Jessica in later years.

Michael

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Michael has Hebrew origins and translates to “who is like God”. This name symbolizes strength and humility and was a hit in the 70s because of notable figures like Michael Jackson. According to BabyCenter, the name Michael first appeared in the Old Testament book of Numbers.

Jessica

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Jessica is a beautiful name that was wildly popular in the 1970s. Meaning “rich” or “God beholds” and derived from Hebrew, this name paved the way for a cultural shift towards modernity in baby names. 

Jason

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The name Jason comes from Greek mythology and means “healer” and “the Lord is salvation”. It’s still an incredibly popular name across the world and is used in many different cultures. A great choice for 70s parents looking for a name with timeless strength!

Lisa

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Lisa was an excellent option for new parents who wanted to give their daughters a feminine, graceful name. Lisa comes from Hebrew origins and means “God is my oath”, which symbolizes fidelity and devotion. 

David

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This classic name has always been a favorite among new parents for their sons. With Hebrew roots, David translates to “beloved” or “friend”, reflecting camaraderie. The Bump says that it has deep biblical roots, and it’s still widely popular, with famous names including David Bowie and David Beckham.

Amanda

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Amanda comes from Latin origins, and means “lovable” or “worthy of love”, reflecting qualities of admiration and affection. In the 1970s, people preferred names for girls that were graceful and refined, which explains why this name was so common. 

James

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James has always been a strong and popular name for baby boys. It means “supplanter”, and “the one who follows” – great for parents who want their sons to appear loyal and diligent. This traditional favorite was cherished in the 1970s for its biblical roots. 

Melissa

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Melissa means “bee” and originates from Greek mythology. The name symbolizes sweetness and hard-working, with an air of gentle charm and beauty that made it a high ranker on girls’ baby name lists of the 1970s.

John

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A strong and simple name to give a baby boy, John has been a popular name for many centuries. It comes from Hebrew origins and means “God is gracious”. With many famous Johns and biblical significance, it’s an excellent choice for parents looking for a masculine name.

Kimberly

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Kimberley is of Old English origin and means “from the royal fortress meadow”. It was popular in the 70s, partly because of the influence of the icon Kimberly Drummond from “Diff’rent Strokes”, which showcased the name’s sophistication and affluence.

Christopher

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A name that has Greek origins and religious connotation, Christopher means “Christ-bearer”, or “bearing Christ”, and symbolizes spirituality and devotion. According to MomJunction, the name Christopher was made popular during the Middle Ages by the Normans.

Michelle

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Michelle is a French name that means “who is like God”. It symbolizes divine grace and strength. Its popularity in the 1970s demonstrated a cultural appreciation for girls’ names that appeared elegant and sophisticated.

Brian

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With Celtic origins and translating to “noble” or “strong”, Brian has been a strong choice for many years. Parents who named their sons Brian wanted to give a sense of resilience, courage, and reliability.

Amy

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Amy is a more modern and highly popular girl’s name which means “beloved” or “dearly loved”. Nameberry says it is of French, Latin origin. The name represents youthful vitality and charm and exudes liveliness and warmth – a great choice for 70s parents searching for contemporary options

Robert

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The Germanic roots of the name Robert give it a strong air of wisdom, distinction, and honor. It means “bright fame” or “famed for his counsel”, so it was chosen by a lot of parents who wanted to give their sons a sense of timeless prestige throughout their lives.

Heather

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This beautiful name was a top choice for many parents in the 1970s. Derived from the name of the flowering plant, Heather is an English name that symbolizes beauty and gentleness. Many baby girls received this name due to its softness and elegance.