We should all learn something every day. As I wait for my Amazon.com shipment to arrive by Friday, laden with my summer reading assignments, I learned that the name 'Jamel' is less common the 'Jamal', even though I hear 'Jamel' more often.
In the doohickey filed of anthropological nomenclaturology, checking the Social Security database, I was able to see the rise and fall of the eternal Madison, John falling into disuse, and Atticus made the top 1000 list this decade, holding title 958, above familiar names such as Arnold, Dwight (the '5o's never die), Forrest, as well as Amare (never heard that name before- it's Latin for the infinitive 'to love'), the more basic form of the best-selling hit, Amanda (I forgot the name of this tense, but it means 'that must be loved'). To put a scale on such things, 6.1 in 100000 received the name this decade; or 1034 kids. But you're more likely to meet a Fidel than an Atticus, touche. But only by a minute chance, though.
Anyway, I expected Washington, DC's state naming statistics to be skewed, as with everything else. But not too much. In 1992 in DC, Ashley was the most popular girl name, Jasmine #2. Jasmine was the typical statistical misfit; nationally Ashley and Jessica topped the list. For guys, Michael was #1, Christopher #2, which was statistically accurate. In 2007 in DC, Ashley was #1, Sophia #2, for girls. Boys, William #1 ,and John #2. Nationally, Jacob, Michael, Emily, and Elizabeth were tops. See!? That proves DC may be divergent from reality. Additional research may be needed to prove conclusion.
Historically, John and Mary were prominent from back when to the 1960's. 70's come, Mike, Chris top the list for 3 decades; Jennifer comes, shares the '80's with Jessica, and Jess prevails one more decade until the 2000's really destroy nomenclature unity.
Breakdown of the Status Quo
Madison? Doesn't even break the 1% mark. Only Emily does. Back in the day, Marys made 6%.
A few boy names barely break the 1% mark. Back in the day, Mike+Chris had 6% market share, together. Even further back, mighty John had 7% market share alone; William had a similar number as well.
What has society wrought?
There'd be a lot of pointless linear stats if I went on, but you got the point. here's the site with the treasure chest: http://www.ssa.gov/OACT/babynames/