Help us name our baby boy!

My husband and I have narrowed down our list for our baby boy.

What are your thoughts? Last name is Scott.

1. Brendon

2. Spencer

3. Logan

4. Bryson

5. Joseph

6. Jackson

7. Hudson

8. Conor

9. Jameson


July 25, 2017 6:30 PM

1. Brendon: I love the name Brendan...Brendon seems like an unnecessarily odd spelling.  It's not really objectionable, it just doesn't seem worth it.

2.Spencer: I don't usually care for surname-names.  However, I have a soft spot for this one since it was almost my name until my mother settled on the name I actually ended up with.

3.Logan: Not my favorite, but I like it for a boy better than for a girl.

4.Bryson: Also not my favorite...sounds slightly trendy and slightly dated.

5.Joseph: I like this one, but it is one of those "no mental image" names.  The full name sounds slightly fussy to me, but not unbearably so.  Joe and Joey are good, solid nicknames, and allow some differentiation between prim-and-proper "Joseph," fun and playful "Joey," and midcentury blue-collar "Joe."

6.Jackson: I'm not crazy about it...if I were looking for a way to get to "Jack" I would use John, and the full name "Jackson" doesn't excite me.

7.Hudson: A surname-name or a place name...neither of those are my favorite categories.  It also sounds little bit heavy for a little boy: the "hud" sound really sounds "big" to me.

8. Conor: Not my favorite, but it's okay.

9. Jameson: This, to me, is the whiskey.  If I met a Jameson, I would think "his parents must love whiskey!"  Which is fine with me, but I don't know if I'd want my child saddled with an alcohol-related name.


It's obvious, as I go through this list, that we have very different style, so take my suggestions with a grain of salt.  None of these are objectionable really, and they all come across as solid, decent boy names even if they aren't my favorites.  Off your list, I would pick Joseph or Brendan, with Conor as a distant third.

July 25, 2017 6:34 PM

Thanks for you input! I honestly have encountered a few different people with the name Brendan and I've seen Brendan, Brendon, and Brendin. So I really wasn't sure which was the common spelling! If we go with this name we will definitely go with the most common spelling for it. 

July 25, 2017 9:11 PM

I like the way Joseph Scott sounds.  A few of your names are quite trendy and popular right now so keep that in mind especially Logan, Jackson, Conor.

July 25, 2017 6:55 PM

Something I always think of when a last name is also a common given name is that people may be confused if his given name sounds like a last name and vice versa (Such as: having Hudson Sc0tt may result in some people thinking his name is Sc0tt Hudson.) Not a dealbreaker, but I think it's something important to note.

For that reason, and sticking to less trendy names, I like Brendan, Logan, and Joseph the best. Good luck!

July 25, 2017 8:47 PM

As someone already mentioned, Scott is sometimes used as a given name. Thus, using a surname-as-given could be problematic for your son: it's only a matter of time before some well-meaning bureaucrat converts Hudson Scott to Scott Hudson. This applies to Spencer, Logan, Bryson, Jackson, and Jameson as well as Hudson.

Like Optatus, I would suggest spelling it Brendan. (The most common Br*nd*n name is actually Brandon, but that's arguably a different name, plus --unlike Brendan-- it's a surname-as-given, so it's not ideal combined with your last name.)

Connor would be my expected spelling, and the statistics bear me out. Note that both Brendan Scott and Connor Scott, in whatever spellings, double down on the Celtic origins (and I'm purposely using the word "Celtic" rather than a more accurate and specific word). That may be precisely your intent, but if it isn't, it's something to keep in mind.

My favorite from your list is Joseph, both in terms of my personal tastes and associations, and --more importantly-- in terms of coordinating with your last name: it's clearly a given name, so greatly reduces the chance of bureaucratic meddling with name order; it doesn't go into Celtic Overload; it's been in continuous, remarkably steady use for as long as anybody's been keeping track, so can't be pinned down to a specific decade; the spelling is about as unambiguous as it's possible to get in English (since someone would have be purposely obtuse to spell it as "Josef"); and it has quite a few nicknames available if you need or want to vary things. However, if you do go with Joseph, I would suggest choosing a more unusual middle name, since I'm sure there are quite a few Joseph Scotts running around out there.

July 25, 2017 11:35 PM

My grandfather's name is Vance and we are thinking abbot that as a middle name. How does Joseph Vance Scott sound?  

July 26, 2017 1:24 AM

Sounds like a winner to me!


I echo that Jameson is a whiskey - and a porn star.  Great name, but don't go there with your son!  And I do have a friend who has a surname that is usually a given name (sort of like James, though it's not), and they gave their son a surname-as-first-name (a la Harris).  I confirm that the boy's first and last names are indeed constantly reversed into James Harris rather than Harris James.

July 26, 2017 2:03 AM

Vance would be a nice mn - it's great having family connection


Brendan, Joseph or Jameson would be my top 3.    Sorry dont like Spencer or Connor with your surname


Logan, Bryson, Jackson, Hudson are ok

July 26, 2017 5:46 AM

I have a soft spot for Logan, because I loved Logan's Run as a child (even though it was sooo scary). I also have two Uncles Joe, and always wanted to use a Joe name (I would have used the original Japanese Johei, though).

Of your other choices, none of the -son names are really my favorite, except that I can get behind them as an alternate form of "junior" (e.g. Jamison if Mom's name is Jama). I agree that Brendan is more common than Brendon. Similarly, Connor with two Ns is much more common than Conor, though the one-N version might be an earlier Anglicization. It feels very classicly Americans-who-want-an-Irish-name (in a good way), if that makes sense. Spencer has conflicting associations for me—it's simultaneously kind of 5th Avenue NYC and blue-collar Spencer for Hire.

On the issue of given name/surname confusion: With a surname like Scott, this is going to be an issue with many traditional male names, because so many of them can also be surnames. Regulars will have heard my story about my husband and his college roommate, who between them had five names that swing both ways, without a single modern surname-name in the bunch. Two of these were Joseph and Scott. My kids are much more likely to assume that Jackson is a given name than a surname, so I wouldn't worry about that issue too much (it might make a good tie-breaker, but don't overthink it too much).

July 26, 2017 5:04 PM

To clarify that last point: Every single name on the OP's list is used as a surname. So is James. So are other traditional names, like Matthew and Charles and Christopher.

If I met an adult today with the names Scott and Mason, I would probably guess that he was a Scott Mason. But if I met a two-year-old with those names, I would probably guess Mason Scott, so I suspect the surname-names will become less confusing as Scott continues to fall in popularity and surname names become more common. Something like Lee Scott/Scott Lee will likely continue to be a head-scratcher for the foreseeable future.

To put this in perspective, numbers-wise: Here are the surname rankings from the 1990 US census:

  • Jackson – #13
  • [Lee – #24]
  • Scott – #39
  • (James – #71)
  • [Mason – #135]
  • Hudson – #162
  • Spencer – #163
  • Joseph – #384
  • (Conner – #393)
  • Logan – #454

(O’Connor – #530)

the rest aren't in the top-1000. So Scott is more common, as a surname, than any of the names on the original list except for Jackson.

At the other end of things, here are the 2016 US Social Security rankings for names given to baby boys:

  • [Mason – #4]
  • (James –  #6)
  • Jackson – #16
  • Logan – #17
  • Joseph – #20
  • (Connor – #54)
  • Hudson – #61
  • Bryson – #93
  • Jameson – #128
  • Spencer – #163
  • Conor – #323
  • (Brendan – #451)
  • Scott – #463

[Lee– #666]

Of the OP’s list, only Brendon-with-an-O ranks lower than Scott (not in the top 1000).

This suggests to me that anyone paying attention to baby name trends shouldn't be too confused about the appropriate order of any of these names when paired with Scott, except possibly Jackson. That includes the baby's peers, who will probably grow up thinking of names like Jameson and Bryson as first names first. 

So overall, I think it's worth looking for a name that you love, without worrying about this issue too much. Just try to avoid names that are significantly more common as surnames and less popular as given names than Scott (like Lee). On the other hand, if this is an issue that really concerns you, I think you probably need to come up with a new list.

July 26, 2017 5:29 PM

Yeah, how many people do you know who pay attention to baby name trends? Who don't visit this website? :)

Note that "subconsciously liking the same names as your peers" and "knowing which names are currently popular" are two different things.

Unmarked patronymics don't change the fact that, in form and in origin, Joseph is a given name, Bryson is a surname, and Scott could be either. Thus, people looking at Bryson Scott will get the irresistible urge to convert it to Scott Bryson, but they will not get the same urge with Joseph Scott. (Many people wouldn't even be able to articulate why Scott Bryson sounds better to them than Bryson Scott, and why they have no problem with Joseph Scott.)

But I agree: find a name you love, everything else is negotiable.

July 26, 2017 5:47 PM

I just think that the lived experience of a Bryson Scott born today is going to be much different than a forty-ish Bryson Scott—in 1977, Scott was a top-30 name and had been for decades, whereas Bryson hadn't ever been in the top-1000. That's a completely different context than today.

With the huge popularity of -son names as given names today, it seems obvious that a lot of folks already think of those as first names, and I really don't think that today's kids are going to internalize the "ends in -son, must be a surname" rule the way that previous generations did.

July 27, 2017 4:54 PM

I think public perception of names lags behind the trends for a simple reason: the men named Scott don't all die at once. So there will still be plenty of people with names like Scott Hudson or Scott Connor or Scott Bryson, and even if they mostly aren't the same age as the hypothetical boy in this thread, the perception that Scott is a common first name remains. 

July 26, 2017 9:59 AM

I agree with most of what has already been posted.  Brendan over Brendon and Connor with 2 "n's".  I also picked up on the Very Celtic sound of Brendan Scott & Connor Scott.  If that is what you want, then go for it!  I prefer Brendan over Connor.

I see the same Very Celtic issue with Logan Scott, though Logan I suspect Logan has lost some of its Celtic sound for a lot of people.

I'd personally avoid Spencer, Bryson, Jackson & Hudson as being very trendy.  I would also avoid Jameson because of the whiskey connection (thought James is lovely).

I think something like Joseph Vance Scott or James Vance Scott would work well.

July 26, 2017 3:59 PM

I love James Vance Scott too and agree with the spelling of Brendan and Connor


July 26, 2017 2:47 PM

I have a friend whose surname is often a given name and given name is often a surname. Additionally, they were both popular given names for girls in our age group. Think along the lines of Sydney Madison or Ashley Taylor, but none of those are the actual names. She has frequently had people switch the two around, even with important documents and such. This has happened in all sorts of situations, such as with college registration and financial aid, at doctor's offices, renewing her driver's license, etc. Knowing her frequent frustrating experiences, I'd avoid a surname as given name with the surname Scott.

Out of the rest of the choices, I would suggest if you choose Brendon or Conor to use the more common Brendan or Connor spellings. They do both come across as very Celtic with your surname, but that's not necessarily a bad thing. My favorite is Joseph, though, and I think Joseph Vance Scott sounds great.

August 2, 2017 9:18 AM

My personal favorites are Joseph, Spencer, and Logan. Although, they are all great choices. I agree with everyone else above about using the most common form of Conor and Brendon if you do decided to us the names, but I think Joseph Vance Scott sounds amazing!

August 7, 2017 1:38 PM

of your names, I like Brendon but don't care for the spelling.  I would spell it Brendan.  Also, if you like Brendan, what about Brennan?  I like Brennan better, but that's just me.  ;)

Spencer with Scott has to many sss in my opinion.

Hudson is ok.  

The rest of the names are not my style.

Other names to consider Torin, Lawson, Griffin