Jacob and Sophia were the most popular names for babies born in 2011, the Social Security Administration revealed on Monday.
Jacob topped the list for boys names for the 13th year in a row, but there were a few surprises in the Top 10: For the first time since 1948, Michael is no longer in the top five and Anthony (a Top 10 favorite in 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, and 2010) has dropped off the list. But Mason made its Top 10 debut as the second most-popular boys name in 2011.
The names on the boys list tend to be stay the same from year to year — Michael, David, John, James, William, Matthew, and Robert have been favorites for generations — which is what makes Mason’s leap from number 12 to number 2 so remarkable. The girls list gets reorganized more often. In the past five years, four different names have held the top girls’ spot — Emily was the number one name from 1996 to 2007, but since then Emma, Isabella, and now Sophia have been the most popular.
While some names are perennially popular, other tend to rocket their way up the list. According to the Social Security Administration, the fastest riser on the girls’ list is Briella. On the boys’ side, it’s Brantley.
The Social Security Administration compiles their annual lists using data supplied by parents when they apply for their newborn’s Social Security number. The agency has tracked baby names every year since 1880 — that year, the most popular names were John and Mary; in 2012, neither of those names even made the top 10. Here are the ones that did: