Skip to Main Content

Find COVID-19 Information and Resources
Information from TN Dept of Health about the Ongoing Novel Coronavirus Outbreak

Emma is Back as Tennessee's Top Baby Girl Name in 2018; William Still Biggest for Boys

Friday, January 04, 2019 | 11:52am
Baby name pic

NASHVILLE  – Emma has unseated Ava as the number one name for baby girls born in Tennessee, rising to the top of the list of the most popular names for babies born in 2018. William maintains the number one spot as the most popular name chosen for baby boys in Tennessee for the 12th straight year.

The top 10 names Tennessee parents chose for their new babies born in 2018* are as follows:

Rank            Girls              Boys

1                    Emma            William

2                    Ava                  James

3                    Olivia              Liam

4                    Harper           Elijah

5                    Amelia            Noah

6                    Charlotte        Jackson

7                    Isabella            Mason

8                    Elizabeth          Grayson

9                    Evelyn                John

10                  Abigail               Oliver

 *provisional data

Emma returns to the top spot for names of baby girls born in Tennessee, which she had held since 2011 until overtaken in 2017 by Ava. Evelyn is a new addition to the top ten list of girls’ names for 2018, with Ella dropping from the list since last year. All other names in the top ten list for girls are the same as in 2017, but have changed in ranking.

Oliver is the new arrival on the top ten list of boys’ names for 2018, with Samuel falling off the list since 2017. William has been the most popular name chosen for baby boys in Tennessee since 2007. All other names in the top ten list for boys made the list in 2017 as well, but have changed in ranking with the exception of Mason, which also ranked at number seven last year. Names chosen for babies are recorded and tallied by the dedicated team in the Tennessee Department of Health Division of Vital Records and Statistics. This division maintains the integrity of approximately 15 million records, including issuance and amending records of births, deaths, marriages and divorces in Tennessee. Team members process an average of more than 42,000 requests for these certificates every month. Requests are submitted in person, by mail, online and via telephone; Vital Records and Statistics staff members handle an average of 8,500 phone calls every month and issue more than 2,100 certificates every single day. This division registers approximately 240,000 new records of events for birth, death, marriage and divorce each year. 

“All Tennessee county health department locations can provide copies of birth and death records, offering an important convenience for Tennesseans,” said Office of Vital Records Director Gray Bishop. “We remind new parents to make sure they have a copy of their child’s birth certificate before filing their 2018 income taxes so they can claim the exemption for the new additions to their families.”

Find a list of county health department locations and their contact information online at

The Tennessee Office of Vital Records is located on the first floor of the Andrew Johnson Tower at 710 James Robertson Parkway in Nashville. Walk-in hours are available Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Central time. The office is open for extended hours each Tuesday and Thursday from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Central time. Learn more about the Tennessee Office of Vital Records including how request these records at

The mission of the Tennessee Department of Health is to protect, promote and improve the health and prosperity of people in Tennessee. TDH has facilities in all 95 counties and provides direct services for more than one in five Tennesseans annually as well as indirect services for everyone in the state, including emergency response to health threats, licensure of health professionals, regulation of health care facilities and inspection of food service establishments. Learn more about TDH services and programs at