By Peggy O'Farrell
The Cincinnati Enquirer
Yell "Jacob!" at the next Gymboree session, and everyone in the building might come running.
Jacob was the most popular name for baby boys born in Ohio, Kentucky and Indiana - as well as nationally - in 2003, according to the Social Security Administration. The annual list, which is based on applications for Social Security cards, was released Friday.
Emily, Emma and Madison were the most popular names for baby girls in the three states last year. Nationally, Emily won the race.
In Ohio, the top five names for boys were Jacob, Andrew, Michael, Ethan and Joshua. Top girls' names were Emma, Madison, Emily, Olivia and Hannah.
In Kentucky, boys named Jacob, James, Ethan, William and Joshua topped the list, while girls named Emily, Madison, Hannah, Emma and Alexis ruled the nursery.
Most popular names for Hoosier boys were Jacob, Ethan, Michael, Andrew and Joshua. For girls, the top names were Emma, Madison, Emily, Hannah and Abigail.
No separate data are available for the Greater Cincinnati area.
Nationally, the top five names for boys were Jacob, Michael, Joshua, Matthew and Andrew; and for girls, Emily, Emma, Madison, Hannah and Olivia.
It's only been in the last century or so that parents picked names based on personal preferences, says Rhys Williams, chair of the sociology department at the University of Cincinnati. Before that, cultural, religious and other factors dictated the limited choices. From 1880 to 1919, the top names for boys and girls every year were John and Mary.
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