The Top Three Baby Names 100 Years Ago in Weber County

By Jenny Goldsberry

Baby New Year has arrived! With him, thousands of other babies will arrive this year too. If you’re expecting, check out this list of 100-year-old baby names you can use as inspiration to name your own Baby New Year. Then, keep reading to find the stories of locals who share the same name.

Girls’ Names

The number-one name in 1922 was Mary. In the United States, it remained the number-one name for 35 consecutive years. Its origin is Hebrew. It was the word for myrrh, used in Biblical times as incense and perfume.

Mary Hardy was born the sixth of fourteen children in Roy. During World War II, she made 50 caliber machine gun shells for the Ogden Arsenal. Then, she worked for the Navy Base, driving Italian prisoners of war there and to Hill Air Force Base. When the Korean War came around, she worked at Hill again, dismantling B-26 aircraft.

Next, comes this Greek name. In its original language it was Dorothea. It meant “God’s gift.”

Dorothy Brown was a first-generation English girl born in Roy. Her mother, Florence Adell Butterworth, left England to move to Utah to follow the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. She gave birth to eleven children, Dorothy being the fifth. Only two months after Dorothy married her husband, Ralph Paul Ricketts, he was drafted into the Second World War.

At number three on the list is another Greek name. Then it was pronounced Helena, now it is shortened to Helen. Helena meant “light or torch.”

Helen Duncan grew up on 6000 South in Roy. During her time, it was known as “Cousin Row” because all her neighbors were her relatives. Seven years after she married Robert Clarence Peterson, he was drafted into the war in 1940. She raised her two children on her own, while he was away.

Boys’ Names

While this was the number-one name in 1922, it would remain in the top five for 52 consecutive years. In Hebrew, it meant “God is gracious.” Its longer companion, Johnathan, meant “Jehovah’s gift.”

John Dawson was born in Roy and lived till the ripe old age of 78. He was fortunate because the lifestyle back then was so dangerous. His wife, Fannie Adella Terry, had seen her sister killed by a falling tree and her own mother struck by lightning. To top it off, they got even luckier by both landing plots in Roy Cemetery, despite its current max capacity.

This name is Old English. It meant “bright or shining with fame.” Robert was made world-renowned by Robert the Bruce, King of Scotland, who preserved his country’s independence.

Robert Charles Child was born on a 20-acre farm in Roy on 5600 South and 3500 West. Today, a Maverick convenience store has taken its place there. He learned from his father, Roy, on how to trade horses. Then, when they moved to a smaller property on 1900 West, they raised chickens, and his mother, Elena Rundquist, taught him how to pluck nearly 100 chickens a day, like she did.

William is an Old German name. It meant “a resolute protector.” Its Old English nickname, Will, meant “determined, firm, resolute.”

William Henry Barton was a first-generation Hollander when he was born in Roy. His parents raised him on a farm, and he continued to farm as an adult. He was known to grow prize-winning tomatoes and watermelons. He also served in WWII, getting drafted a year before he married his wife, Verla Ellen Birt.


This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.