Most popular boy names in the 80s in California

Written by:
September 11, 2021
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Most popular boy names in the 80s in California

Known for the emergence of MTV, the rise of neon, and the invention of the mixtape, the 1980s were certainly a rockin' era in American history. New economic policies were introduced, the news network CNN launched, and, much less enjoyable, Wall Street crashed on the infamous Black Monday—the worst one-day decline in American stock market history. Sandra Day O'Connor was nominated by President Ronald Reagan as the first female Supreme Court justice, the Cold War saw the beginning of the end as the Berlin Wall began to fall, and millions watched in horror as the Space Shuttle Challenger exploded on live television.

Among all the big hair, Rubix cubes, and shoulder pads, however, there were still plenty of babies being born during this defining time. And with celebrities like Michael J. Fox and Robert Palmer reaching their peak fame during the ‘80s, it's no surprise that many parents chose to name their kids after them.

To see just how popular these names were, Stacker compiled a list of the most popular baby names for boys in the 80s in California using data from the Social Security Administration. Names are ranked by number of babies born.

Just like scrunchies and PAC MAN, Americans can still hold onto some of the best aspects of the ‘80s, including baby names (some things never get old). So whether you're welcoming a new little one into the world this year or just curious, these are the 100 most popular baby names of the 1980s in California.

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Canva

#50. Travis

Travis is a name of French origin meaning "to cross".

California
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 9,482
- Number of babies from 2010 to 2019: 1,767 (#266 most common name, -81.4% compared to the 80s)

National
- Rank: #42
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 102,915
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Unsplash

#49. Stephen

Stephen is a name of Greek origin meaning "wreath, crown".

California
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 9,875
- Number of babies from 2010 to 2019: 1,356 (#311 most common name, -86.3% compared to the 80s)

National
- Rank: #36
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 113,597
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PxHere

#48. Bryan

Bryan is a name of Irish origin meaning "noble".

California
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 9,978
- Number of babies from 2010 to 2019: 4,911 (#106 most common name, -50.8% compared to the 80s)

National
- Rank: #51
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 80,488
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Canva

#47. Miguel

Miguel is a name of Spanish origin meaning "who is like God?".

California
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 10,137
- Number of babies from 2010 to 2019: 6,645 (#76 most common name, -34.4% compared to the 80s)

National
- Rank: #116
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 25,189
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Unsplash

#46. Charles

Charles is a name of Germanic origin meaning "free man".

California
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 10,350
- Number of babies from 2010 to 2019: 5,573 (#95 most common name, -46.2% compared to the 80s)

National
- Rank: #33
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 131,861
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Jeremy Bishop // Unsplash

#45. Patrick

Patrick is a name of Latin origin meaning "nobleman".

California
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 10,775
- Number of babies from 2010 to 2019: 2,278 (#212 most common name, -78.9% compared to the 80s)

National
- Rank: #37
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 111,365
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Canva

#44. Jesus

Jesus is a name of Hebrew origin meaning "to deliver".

California
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 11,140
- Number of babies from 2010 to 2019: 9,435 (#48 most common name, -15.3% compared to the 80s)

National
- Rank: #106
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 27,012
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Ramona Heim // Shutterstock

#43. Jesse

Jesse is a name of Hebrew origin meaning "the Lord exists".

California
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 11,888
- Number of babies from 2010 to 2019: 4,776 (#110 most common name, -59.8% compared to the 80s)

National
- Rank: #49
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 85,897
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Serenko Natalia // Shutterstock

#42. Scott

Scott is a name of Scotland origin meaning "a Scotsman".

California
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 12,011
- Number of babies from 2010 to 2019: 752 (#445 most common name, -93.7% compared to the 80s)

National
- Rank: #38
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 108,165
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Tomsickova Tatyana // Shutterstock

#41. Jacob

Jacob is a name of Hebrew origin meaning "to follow".

California
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 12,021
- Number of babies from 2010 to 2019: 25,368 (#2 most common name, +111.0% compared to the 80s)

National
- Rank: #35
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 124,186
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Vasilyev Alexandr // Shutterstock

#40. Benjamin

Benjamin is a name of Hebrew origin meaning "son of my days".

California
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 12,416
- Number of babies from 2010 to 2019: 17,591 (#16 most common name, +41.7% compared to the 80s)

National
- Rank: #31
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 141,341
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Africa Studio // Shutterstock

#39. Jeremy

Jeremy is a name of English origin meaning "appointed by God".

California
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 12,485
- Number of babies from 2010 to 2019: 3,534 (#147 most common name, -71.7% compared to the 80s)

National
- Rank: #28
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 153,418
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yifanjrb // Shutterstock

#38. Luis

Luis is a name of German origin meaning "famous warrior".

California
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 12,595
- Number of babies from 2010 to 2019: 9,187 (#50 most common name, -27.1% compared to the 80s)

National
- Rank: #83
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 37,123
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Vasiuk Iryna // Shutterstock

#37. Carlos

Carlos is a name of Spanish origin meaning "free man".

California
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 12,616
- Number of babies from 2010 to 2019: 8,261 (#61 most common name, -34.5% compared to the 80s)

National
- Rank: #76
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 41,320
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Canva

#36. Paul

Paul is a name of Latin origin meaning "humble".

California
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 12,886
- Number of babies from 2010 to 2019: 2,212 (#217 (tie) most common name, -82.8% compared to the 80s)

National
- Rank: #40
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 104,339
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Yulia Sribna // Shutterstock

#35. Alexander

Alexander is a name of Greek origin meaning “defender of man".

California
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 13,412
- Number of babies from 2010 to 2019: 22,650 (#6 most common name, +68.9% compared to the 80s)

National
- Rank: #50
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 81,932
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Anna Grigorjeva // Shutterstock

#34. Mark

Mark is a name of Latin origin meaning "God of war".

California
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 13,468
- Number of babies from 2010 to 2019: 2,871 (#179 most common name, -78.7% compared to the 80s)

National
- Rank: #34
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 129,371
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Canva

#33. Sean

Sean is a name of Irish origin meaning "God is gracious".

California
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 14,768
- Number of babies from 2010 to 2019: 2,905 (#176 most common name, -80.3% compared to the 80s)

National
- Rank: #41
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 103,828
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Irisska // Shutterstock

#32. Kyle

Kyle is a name of Scottish origin meaning "narrow strait".

California
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 15,011
- Number of babies from 2010 to 2019: 3,110 (#164 most common name, -79.3% compared to the 80s)

National
- Rank: #30
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 141,910
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FamVeld // Shutterstock

#31. Timothy

Timothy is a name of Greek origin meaning "honouring God".

California
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 15,022
- Number of babies from 2010 to 2019: 2,704 (#187 most common name, -82.0% compared to the 80s)

National
- Rank: #26
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 172,811
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DONOT6_STUDIO // Shutterstock

#30. Aaron

Aaron is a name of Hebrew origin meaning "high mountain".

California
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 15,217
- Number of babies from 2010 to 2019: 14,606 (#25 most common name, -4.0% compared to the 80s)

National
- Rank: #32
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 138,343
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Africa Studio // Shutterstock

#29. Thomas

Thomas is a name of Greek origin meaning "twin".

California
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 15,284
- Number of babies from 2010 to 2019: 6,088 (#81 most common name, -60.2% compared to the 80s)

National
- Rank: #24
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 177,743
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Pexels

#28. Jeffrey

Jeffrey is a name of English origin meaning "pledge of peace".

California
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 16,316
- Number of babies from 2010 to 2019: 1,644 (#276 most common name, -89.9% compared to the 80s)

National
- Rank: #29
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 144,781
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Pixabay

#27. Adam

Adam is a name of Hebrew origin meaning "earth".

California
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 16,974
- Number of babies from 2010 to 2019: 8,370 (#59 most common name, -50.7% compared to the 80s)

National
- Rank: #22
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 195,049
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PxHere

#26. Juan

Juan is a name of Spanish origin meaning "God is gracious".

California
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 17,819
- Number of babies from 2010 to 2019: 8,602 (#56 most common name, -51.7% compared to the 80s)

National
- Rank: #65
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 51,205
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Anna Grigorjeva // Shutterstock

#25. William

William is a name of Germanic origin meaning "vehement protector".

California
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 19,908
- Number of babies from 2010 to 2019: 14,227 (#29 most common name, -28.5% compared to the 80s)

National
- Rank: #15
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 248,240
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PxHere

#24. Richard

Richard is a name of German origin meaning "dominant ruler".

California
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 21,722
- Number of babies from 2010 to 2019: 4,134 (#125 most common name, -81.0% compared to the 80s)

National
- Rank: #27
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 154,710
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Katrina Elena // Shutterstock

#23. Brandon

Brandon is a name of English origin meaning "beacon hill" or "crow".

California
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 21,788
- Number of babies from 2010 to 2019: 9,559 (#46 most common name, -56.1% compared to the 80s)

National
- Rank: #17
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 232,173
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burlakova_anna // Shutterstock

#22. Kevin

Kevin is a name of Irish origin meaning "noble".

California
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 22,426
- Number of babies from 2010 to 2019: 9,946 (#43 most common name, -55.6% compared to the 80s)

National
- Rank: #23
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 188,638
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Tatiana Chekryzhova // Shutterstock

#21. Steven

Steven is a name of Greek origin meaning "crown".

California
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 22,709
- Number of babies from 2010 to 2019: 4,453 (#119 most common name, -80.4% compared to the 80s)

National
- Rank: #25
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 177,405
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Alena Vostrikova // Shutterstock

#20. Eric

Eric is a name of Norse origin meaning "sole ruler".

California
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 24,165
- Number of babies from 2010 to 2019: 5,837 (#87 most common name, -75.8% compared to the 80s)

National
- Rank: #21
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 204,199
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Syda Productions // Shutterstock

#19. Nicholas

Nicholas is a name of Greek origin meaning "victory of the people".

California
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 25,411
- Number of babies from 2010 to 2019: 9,006 (#53 most common name, -64.6% compared to the 80s)

National
- Rank: #19
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 223,293
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Canva

#18. Brian

Brian is a name of Irish origin meaning "noble".

California
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 25,550
- Number of babies from 2010 to 2019: 3,874 (#131 most common name, -84.8% compared to the 80s)

National
- Rank: #16
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 233,976
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Pixabay

#17. Justin

Justin is a name of Latin origin meaning "righteous".

California
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 26,030
- Number of babies from 2010 to 2019: 5,661 (#92 most common name, -78.3% compared to the 80s)

National
- Rank: #12
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 289,755
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Sidharth Sircar // Pexels

#16. Jonathan

Jonathan is a name of Hebrew origin meaning "God has given".

California
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 27,730
- Number of babies from 2010 to 2019: 13,779 (#32 most common name, -50.3% compared to the 80s)

National
- Rank: #18
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 229,906
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Unsplash

#15. Jason

Jason is a name of Greek origin meaning "healer".

California
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 29,187
- Number of babies from 2010 to 2019: 8,514 (#57 most common name, -70.8% compared to the 80s)

National
- Rank: #11
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 292,016
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Shutterstock

#14. Anthony

Anthony is a name of Latin origin meaning "praiseworthy".

California
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 29,342
- Number of babies from 2010 to 2019: 19,694 (#8 most common name, -32.9% compared to the 80s)

National
- Rank: #20
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 211,804
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Lipatova Maryna // Shutterstock

#13. John

John is a name of Hebrew origin meaning "Yahweh has been gracious".

California
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 30,260
- Number of babies from 2010 to 2019: 8,235 (#62 most common name, -72.8% compared to the 80s)

National
- Rank: #9
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 321,034
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PxHere

#12. James

James is a name of Hebrew origin meaning "supplanter".

California
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 30,850
- Number of babies from 2010 to 2019: 14,244 (#28 most common name, -53.8% compared to the 80s)

National
- Rank: #6
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 356,362
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Todd Trapani // Unsplash

#11. Joseph

Joseph is a name of Hebrew origin meaning "he will add".

California
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 30,908
- Number of babies from 2010 to 2019: 14,781 (#24 most common name, -52.2% compared to the 80s)

National
- Rank: #10
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 299,367
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Canva

#10. Andrew

Andrew is a name of Greek origin meaning "brave".

California
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 31,998
- Number of babies from 2010 to 2019: 17,277 (#17 most common name, -46.0% compared to the 80s)

National
- Rank: #13
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 285,013
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Pixabay

#9. Jose

Jose is a name of Spanish origin meaning "God will increase".

California
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 32,228
- Number of babies from 2010 to 2019: 13,032 (#34 most common name, -59.6% compared to the 80s)

National
- Rank: #48
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 86,349
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Tetyana Kovyrina // Pexels

#8. Ryan

Ryan is a name of Irish origin meaning "little king" or "illustrious".

California
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 33,476
- Number of babies from 2010 to 2019: 12,557 (#35 most common name, -62.5% compared to the 80s)

National
- Rank: #14
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 278,848
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Philippe Put // Flickr

#7. Joshua

Joshua is a name of Hebrew origin meaning "God Is my salvation".

California
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 35,500
- Number of babies from 2010 to 2019: 14,280 (#27 most common name, -59.8% compared to the 80s)

National
- Rank: #4
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 396,533
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Canva

#6. Robert

Robert is a name of Germanic origin meaning "fame" or "bright".

California
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 36,320
- Number of babies from 2010 to 2019: 7,154 (#73 most common name, -80.3% compared to the 80s)

National
- Rank: #8
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 321,598
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Pexels

#5. Matthew

Matthew is a name of Hebrew origin meaning "Gift of Yahweh".

California
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 44,264
- Number of babies from 2010 to 2019: 22,661 (#5 most common name, -48.8% compared to the 80s)

National
- Rank: #3
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 458,894
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Canva

#4. Daniel

Daniel is a name of Hebrew origin meaning "God is my judge".

California
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 50,145
- Number of babies from 2010 to 2019: 24,502 (#3 most common name, -51.1% compared to the 80s)

National
- Rank: #7
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 345,414
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Unsplash

#3. David

David is a name of Hebrew origin meaning "beloved".

California
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 51,612
- Number of babies from 2010 to 2019: 18,868 (#11 most common name, -63.4% compared to the 80s)

National
- Rank: #5
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 383,610
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Canva

#2. Christopher

Christopher is a name of English origin meaning "Christ-bearer".

California
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 61,487
- Number of babies from 2010 to 2019: 13,923 (#31 most common name, -77.4% compared to the 80s)

National
- Rank: #2
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 554,793
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Pixabay

#1. Michael

Michael is a name of Hebrew origin meaning "who is like God?".

California
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 73,620
- Number of babies from 2010 to 2019: 17,941 (#14 most common name, -75.6% compared to the 80s)

National
- Rank: #1
- Number of babies from 1980 to 1989: 663,592

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