feature image (and adorable onesie!) courtesy of Simply Stated by Kristin Bleyenberg.
Giving Your Kid a Michigan Baby Name is the Ultimate High Five
So everyone and their brother in Michigan is either sporting a Smitten with the Mitten t-shirt or has a bumper sticker on their car.
I didn’t realize how deep our state pride was until I traveled out of Michigan and everyone started looking the same – you couldn’t tell an Ohio-an from an Alabaman!
It’s pretty special to have such a uniquely shaped geography, and to be surrounded by world-class great lakes. It’s fun to hail from the mitten!
But who are the truly diehard Michiganders? Who is truly Smitten with the Mitten?
Answer: Those loyal folks who give their own kids a Michigan-inspired baby name!
Our List of Michigan-Inspired Baby Names
If you’re expecting and want some Michigan-centric baby name inspiration, here’s your list of baby names. (In no particular order.)
Edsel (Ford). Okay, so this one is a no brainer. With throwback names being all the rage right now, you can be on trend while also giving a silent nod to the famed Ford Company president and important Detroit art benefactor. Totally vintage. Totally better than Ethel.
Ford. This one scores you double points for Michigan madness. Because in addition to the invention of the automobile by that Ford, we’re also home to the 38th President of the United States, Gerald R. Ford.
Vernor. I think that maybe this is the most iconic Michigan name you can give your child. And Vern’s a cool nickname! Who’s game? If you have a thing for the best ginger ale in America, created right here in Detroit, you may be a good candidate.
Stevie (Wonder). Only smooth-singing musical savants need apply. Or if you think your kid may become a hardcore humanitarian.
Aretha. The name Aretha packs a powerful punch, yet still maintains a distinct air of femininity. It’s the kind of girl all girls dream of being.
Detroit. Just do it.
Chevelle. For parents who have a burning nostalgia for four on the floor.
Izzo. I love the nicknames Ozzy and Izzy. Go Green. Go White. Go with Izzo!
(Bob) Seger. Old Time Detroit N Roll rock in its hay day. Timeless. Iconic.
(Lewis) Cass. Cass sounds like a hard core name, if you ask me. And also could swing to the preppy side. Cass covers all the bases!
Frederik. The shoes of Frederik Meijer are big ones to fill, with his Meijer store dynasty, incredible philanthropy, and world-class Frederik Meijer Gardens and Sculpture Park that is an amazing gift to West Michigan.
Sparky. This name is waiting for the right Detroit Tigers diehard fan. Is it you?
Gordie (Howe). And here’s one for the Red Wings fans out there. There can be only one Mr. Hockey, but there is no limit to admirers honoring him by giving this name to their kids.
(Barry) Gordy. If you don’t like Gordie with an ie, how about with a y? A definite nod to the iconic sounds of Motown.
Smokey (Robinson). Another Motown great, Smokey’s career was built on his great songwriting skills.
Malcolm (X). Did you know that this famed civil rights leader was raised in Lansing? Neither did I! Spread this tidbit of knowledge by naming your child Malcolm and telling everyone why.
Sojourner (Truth). Sojourner is just a beautiful name and she did beautiful things with her life fighting in the abolitionist movement. And she lived in Battle Creek.
Earvin Magic Johnson. Give him whatever first name you want. Then give him the middle name magic. People who aren’t diehard basketball fans may think you a little pretentious, but everyone else will get it. And give you the sly “I get you, man” wink.
Flint. I know they’ve got the whole water scandal going on, but sometimes I just want to root for this poor little city that gets a bad rap. Flint helped pioneer the automobile era. Flint has worked so hard to remake itself and its citizens are a resilient, hopeful bunch.
Mackinac (or Mackinaw). Because the nickname Mac is awesome. And no matter where your child will go, they’ll always know where he’s from.
Gilda (Radner). For those who aspire to raise a comedic genius.
(Tom) Selleck. Can Selleck be a first name? I hope so. Because Detroiter Tom Selleck is iconic in my book and his greatness needs to be made apparent in future generations.
Cadillac. Cuz cars. You can buy the Cadillac of houses or speed boats. Why not have the Cadillac of children?
(John C.) Sheehan This one is for the nerds of obscure, yet really interesting, facts. Do you know what John Sheehan, of Battle Creek, did for the world? He developed the synthetic form of penicillin in 1957, revolutionizing the field of medicine. Sheehan was awarded more than 40 patents including one for the explosive RDX, which replaced TNT in rocket, bomb, and torpedo warheads.
Leland. For those who are wistful for summers up north on Lake Michigan.
Ada. This one’s for you, West Michigan. It’s a sweet name. And a lot of great people hail from this little town outside of Grand Rapids. Make sure you take this one’s baby pics at the Ada Covered Bridge!
Alden. This tiny little northern Michigan town nestled alongside Torch Lake has a great modern yet sophisticated, while also pronounceable, name.
Rowe. This shortened version of the popular Rowan/en is for Grand Rapids history and architecture buffs. With the newly-rehabbed old Rowe hotel in downtown Grand Rapids, you can get in on the action and choose this cute, classy name, perfect for a girl or boy.
Elsie. Did you know that Elsie, Michigan is home of the world’s largest registered Holstein dairy herd? If this fact excites you, Elsie is the name for you!
More Michigan-Inspired Baby Names
Still Not Satisfied? Here are some more famous Michiganders that may spark your interest in naming your baby!
- Steven Segal
- Charles Lindbergh
- Diana Ross
- Sugar Ray
- Ted Nugent
- Ty Cobb
- Della Reese
- Marshall Mathers. Or Eminem, if you like to be spunky.
- Alice Cooper
What did we miss? Tell us in the comments other great Michigan-inspired baby names!
More in Grand Rapids
New International Fireworks Competition Coming to Traverse City for Sept 2023
Don’t Miss the Dazzling Showdown in Traverse City- International Fireworks Championship Get ready to ignite your excitement, because Traverse City, MI is about to explode with the country’s first-ever International…
Grand Rapids Strawberry Picking: 11 West Michigan Farms with the Best UPick Strawberries
Summer Starts with UPick Strawberries In West Michigan, summertime fruit picking kicks off with strawberries. Raising my kids in West Michigan, surrounded by so many amazing farms, finding the best…
Brightest Grand Rapids Fireworks Shows – 2023
West Michigan & Grand Rapids Fireworks Shows Fireworks are popping up around West Michigan again! Here’s where you can find fireworks in Grand Rapids this year, including 4th of July…
Fun Places! 12 Best Things to Do in Fort Wayne with Kids, Free & Affordable Activities Included
Fort Wayne Delights for the Whole Family Looking for an amazing, affordable, easy-to-reach family getaway? Northeast Indiana’s Fort Wayne takes the cake with its brand-new waterfront park and huge roster…
100 Free Things to do in Michigan Will Keep You Adventuring Year Round
These free Michigan family activities help you explore the Mitten State on a budget. There are free Michigan travel ideas in every corner of the state.
Favorite South Haven Campgrounds: Find Your 2023 Outdoor Retreat at these Campgrounds in Southwest Michigan
Southwest Michigan Campgrounds If you’re looking for fabulous South Haven campgrounds, you’re in the right spot. As far as campgrounds in Michigan go, Southwest Michigan has gem after gem. Deciding…
51 thoughts on “These Michigan Inspired Baby Names are Perfect for Your Pint-Sized Mitten Fan”
Robin should be on the list. State bird ?
We have a Grant 🙂
Shared on FB ☀️
Leland was my favorite! Expecting my first baby any second now (6 days overdue!) and naming her Summer ????
Ada, that’s where I lived for over 30 years. Ada Michigan, a Great place to live.
Shared on FB 🙂
I like a few of the names!! We are having a little boy so I was looking at the boy names!! So I like Mackinac or Mackinaw!! Mac for short is really cute! I also like Rowe and Leland! I think Magic for a middle name is super cute too!! We already have our name picked out but lots of great ideas! Mac would have the most sentimental meaning to me! Even though I like some of the other ones I don’t really care enough about the things the name is affiliated with to name my child that! Cute idea! And fun looking through the names!
I like Ada.
Never would have thought it, but Edsel just sounds cool! Too bad we’ll never have a boy. Maybe one of the kittens ????
I just had my daughter on 3/17/16 her name is Charlavoix Jones. After Charlevoix, Mi.
I grew up by Ada, so I love that one. I think Lowell would make a cute boy name too!
I shared on Twitter!
Antrim! I have a friend who named their child Antrim.
Maybe I’m a tad bit bias but my family has three generations of Smokey! Hopefully the name will be carried on!
Shared on fb
Leland is my favorite… It’s my son’s middle name after our honeymoon spot!
I think Elsie is cute!
Leland is my fav!
Shared on FB
Love Leland! Though I’ve been leaning toward Reese, which didn’t make your list.
Ada. It’s simple and sweet
Edsel is a cool oldie! I’ve also heard Charlevoix (which isn’t on your list 😉 ) Shared and liked on fb!!
We just moved to Ada- so it’s my favorite!
My favorite is Elsie.
Izzo! Go green!
Shared on FB
I like Alden.
Gordie is pretty good, but how about Griffin? ????
Love the name Leland. Just had a baby boy and Leland was on our list.
I like the city names (Ada) and there are other nice ones too, like Shelby or Beulah!
Ada and Rowe – I hope someone uses these as names for their kiddos!
My grandsons middle name is Michigan. He is not only named after this great state but after his great grandfather Michigan!
Rowe is my fave!
I love the name Elsie!!
I like the name Alden!
My favorite is Leland 🙂
Alden would probably be my favorite from the list.
Our 6 year old sons name is Alleghan Jackson.
Shared on FB
Sparky maybe as a nickname.
You forgot Kid Rock! Robert James Ritchie
Shared on facebook!
I question the seven by ten Foot description 7’x10’… I think it should be 7″x10″
The way that is is written 7′ x 10′ is actually correct.
TY Cobb… I work with a guy by this name!
Tie between Rowe and Elsie
Shared on Facebook & Twiitter @SensitiveMommy
I shared on FB.
I like Ada.
Loni Love is an American comedian and actress. While working as an electrical engineer in 2003, Love began to pursue a career in music engineering.
Born July 12Detroit, MI
Shared page on facebook
I love the name Ford