Bessie

First Name
171k
in the U.S.
since 1880
Last Name
126
in the U.S.
in 2010
Girls
Boys
First
Last
On This Page
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How to Pronounce Bessie

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Meaning and Origin

What does the name Bessie mean? Find out below.

Origin and Meaning of Bessie

"Bessie" is a name of English origin, and it means "God is my oath". It's a name commonly given to girls.

Wiktionary
  1. A diminutive of Elizabeth, also used as a formal female given name.
  2. Bessie, a lake monster supposed to exist in Lake Erie in the United States.
  3. A town in Oklahoma.

Notable Persons Named Bessie

Bessie Smith was a blues and twelve-bar blues singer, actress, and singing. Her career lasted from 1912 to 1937. Bessie was born Bessie Smith on April 15th, 1894 in Chattanooga, Tennessee, U.S. Bessie is also known as The Empress of the Blues. She left this life on September 26th, 1937.

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Betty Wright is a rhythm, blues, soul music, gospel music, and disco musician. She was most prominent from 1956 to present. Betty was given the name Bessie Regina Norris on December 21st, 1953 in Miami, Florida, United States.

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Bessie Love was an actress. She was most active from 1915 to present. Bessie was given the name Juanita Horton on September 10th, 1898 in Midland, Texas, United States. She breathed her last breath on April 26th, 1986.

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Lillian Gordy Carter was a nursing and nurse. Lillian was given the name Bessie Lillian Gordy on August 15th, 1898 in Richland, Georgia. She breathed her last breath on October 30th, 1983.

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Bessie Braddock was a member of parliament. Bessie was born on September 24th, 1899 in Liverpool, Lancashire, England. She passed away on November 13th, 1970.

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Bessie was born in 1911 in Kingston, Jamaica. She left this life in 1993.

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Notable Persons With the Last Name Bessie

Alvah was born on June 4th, 1904. He died on July 21st, 1985.

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How popular is the baby name Bessie in the U.S.?

Click Here to Show Chart Data
Year Total Babies Born Girls Born Boys Born Ranking
1880 796 796 0 #23 girl name
1881 911 903 8 #22 girl name
1882 1,153 1,144 9 #18 girl name
1883 1,241 1,241 0 #18 girl name
1884 1,456 1,451 5 #15 girl name
1885 1,595 1,588 7 #13 girl name
1886 1,796 1,791 5 #12 girl name
1887 1,843 1,838 5 #13 girl name
1888 2,290 2,278 12 #10 girl name
1889 2,350 2,343 7 #9 girl name
1890 2,370 2,370 0 #11 girl name
1891 2,331 2,323 8 #12 girl name
1892 2,553 2,541 12 #13 girl name
1893 2,360 2,352 8 #15 girl name
1894 2,535 2,520 15 #13 girl name
1895 2,549 2,542 7 #15 girl name
1896 2,447 2,435 12 #18 girl name
1897 2,413 2,407 6 #17 girl name
1898 2,653 2,647 6 #16 girl name
1899 2,280 2,280 0 #19 girl name
1900 3,055 3,044 11 #15 girl name
1901 2,194 2,183 11 #21 girl name
1902 2,455 2,448 7 #19 girl name
1903 2,354 2,339 15 #21 girl name
1904 2,345 2,340 5 #21 girl name
1905 2,455 2,446 9 #20 girl name
1906 2,403 2,396 7 #21 girl name
1907 2,322 2,311 11 #30 girl name
1908 2,206 2,201 5 #34 girl name
1909 2,288 2,276 12 #35 girl name
1910 2,404 2,392 12 #37 girl name
1911 2,288 2,279 9 #40 girl name
1912 2,848 2,832 16 #43 girl name
1913 2,965 2,951 14 #47 girl name
1914 3,272 3,260 12 #55 girl name
1915 3,903 3,888 15 #57 girl name
1916 4,132 4,122 10 #56 girl name
1917 3,944 3,928 16 #61 girl name
1918 4,118 4,102 16 #61 girl name
1919 4,117 4,105 12 #59 girl name
1920 3,920 3,906 14 #71 girl name
1921 3,689 3,677 12 #75 girl name
1922 3,472 3,447 25 #81 girl name
1923 3,401 3,387 14 #81 girl name
1924 3,424 3,403 21 #86 girl name
1925 3,281 3,267 14 #87 girl name
1926 3,080 3,054 26 #89 girl name
1927 2,990 2,974 16 #88 girl name
1928 2,690 2,663 27
1929 2,399 2,379 20
1930 2,407 2,384 23
1931 2,131 2,114 17
1932 2,105 2,095 10
1933 1,899 1,882 17
1934 1,843 1,831 12
1935 1,775 1,755 20
1936 1,657 1,645 12
1937 1,560 1,551 9
1938 1,434 1,418 16
1939 1,373 1,362 11
1940 1,302 1,296 6
1941 1,184 1,174 10
1942 1,273 1,267 6
1943 1,148 1,148 0
1944 1,121 1,121 0
1945 1,074 1,074 0
1946 1,027 1,022 5
1947 1,013 1,013 0
1948 1,002 997 5
1949 953 946 7
1950 794 794 0
1951 764 764 0
1952 728 728 0
1953 648 648 0
1954 653 653 0
1955 536 536 0
1956 519 514 5
1957 465 465 0
1958 444 444 0
1959 393 393 0
1960 386 386 0
1961 317 317 0
1962 331 331 0
1963 293 293 0
1964 291 291 0
1965 272 272 0
1966 203 203 0
1967 184 184 0
1968 159 159 0
1969 157 157 0
1970 160 160 0
1971 140 140 0
1972 149 149 0
1973 120 120 0
1974 117 117 0
1975 131 131 0
1976 106 106 0
1977 92 92 0
1978 91 91 0
1979 101 101 0
1980 99 99 0
1981 103 103 0
1982 89 89 0
1983 67 67 0
1984 68 68 0
1985 84 84 0
1986 67 67 0
1987 59 59 0
1988 52 52 0
1989 60 60 0
1990 73 73 0
1991 65 65 0
1992 51 51 0
1993 24 24 0
1994 37 37 0
1995 26 26 0
1996 30 30 0
1997 32 32 0
1998 27 27 0
1999 21 21 0
2000 30 30 0
2001 26 26 0
2002 28 28 0
2003 15 15 0
2004 7 7 0
2005 15 15 0
2006 19 19 0
2007 15 15 0
2008 15 15 0
2009 9 9 0
2010 8 8 0
2011 9 9 0
2012 13 13 0
2013 17 17 0
2014 11 11 0
2015 11 11 0
2016 8 8 0

Explain the Trends

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Where is the name Bessie popular?

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Popularity of Bessie as a first name

The map shows the relative popularity of the name Bessie as a first name in each of the states. See other popular names in Mississippi, Alabama, or South Carolina.

Popularity of Bessie as a last name

The map shows the absolute popularity of the name Bessie as a last name in each of the states. See other popular names in Louisiana, Michigan, or New York.

Common last names for Bessie

  • Smith
  • Johnson
  • Williams
  • Jones
  • Brown
  • Davis
  • Miller
  • Wilson
  • Moore
  • Taylor
  • Harris
  • White
  • Jackson
  • Martin
  • Thomas
  • Thompson
  • Clark
  • Anderson
  • Robinson
  • Walker

Ethnicity Distribution

Ethnicity Bessie U.S.
  White 35.71% 64.26%
  African American 61.11% 11.96%
  Asian, Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander 0.00% 4.85%
  American Indian and Alaska Native 0.00% 0.69%
  Two or More Ethnicities 0.00% 1.76%
  Hispanic or Latino 0.00% 16.26%

Of Last Name Bessie

People with the last name Bessie are most frequently White or African American

Entire United States

Fun Facts about the name Bessie

  • How Popular is the name Bessie? Bessie is the 417th most popular name of all time. As a last name Bessie was the 133,863rd most popular name in 2010.
  • How many people with the first name Bessie have been born in the United States? From 1880 to 2016, the Social Security Administration has recorded 170,751 babies born with the first name Bessie in the United States. That's more than enough people named Bessie to occupy the country of Saint Lucia with an estimated population of 166,526 (as of May 10, 2010).
  • What year were 5 or more babies first named Bessie? The name was first given to 5 or more babies in the year 1880 when it was given as a first name to 796 new born babies.
  • When was Bessie first recorded in the United States? The oldest recorded birth by the Social Security Administration for the first name Bessie is Thursday, August 21st, 1862.
  • What year had the most people named Bessie born? The highest recorded use of the first name Bessie was in 1916 with a total of 4,122 babies. That's a lot of babies named Bessie!
  • Random Bessie Factoid: According to the 1924 U.S. Social Security Administration data, the first name Bessie ranks 100th in popularity as a baby girl's name in District of Columbia. Imagine that, 9 babies in District of Columbia have the same name as you in 1924.
  • Weird things about the name Bessie: Your name in reverse order is Eisseb. A random rearrangement of the letters in your name (anagram) will give Esbsie. How do you pronounce that?
  • How many people have the last name Bessie? In 2010, the U.S. Census Bureau surveyed 126 people with the last name Bessie.
  • How likely are you to meet someone with the last name of Bessie? Bessie is one of the most unique last names recorded.

What Bessies Have Visited This Page?

Name poster for Bessie

Name poster for Bessie(click to save the high quality version)

Most Popular Names

All Name Lists

  • Sources:
  • U.S. Census Bureau: Frequently Occurring Surnames from the Census 2000 (public domain).
  • U.S. Social Security Administration: Popular Baby Names, Death Master File (public domain).
  • Wiktionary: Titles and License.
  • Notable persons via Wikipedia: Titles and License. Click each image for the attribution information.