Netherlands drops the name ‘Holland’ in rebranding move

The Dutch authorities have decided to rebrand their country’s international image, with a switch from calling it ‘Holland’ to ‘The Netherlands’.

Ministries and sporting and cultural institutions, along with the country’s major cities, came up with a new strategy that aims to be “less promotional and more about content”, according to the Adformatie marketing magazine. The details will be published later in the year, but marketing professionals briefed on the change say the country will sell itself as “co-creating pioneering solutions to global challenges”.

Countries and cities have been taking branding more seriously in recent years, either to overcome cliches, present a more positive image, or simply raise awareness.

About Names: A Column on Gwyneth

Dr. Cleveland Evans writes about names for the Omaha World-Herald. In his September 27th column, he looks at the history of the name Gwyneth.

Gwyneth Paltrow

Most experts believe Gwyneth is an alteration of Welsh place name Gwynedd. The kingdom of Gwynedd was created in northwestern Wales around 450. After the Romans abandoned Wales around 383, Irish raiders settled there. Gwynedd is thought to be a Welsh form of either Irish “fían” (warrior band) or “Féni” (Irish people).

Native Welsh speakers defeated the Irish to found the kingdom. Then, in the ninth century, Gwynedd’s King Rhodri the Great united most of Wales under his rule. The letters “th” represent two different sounds in English. Teeth/teethe and Ethan/heathen contrast the two sounds. In Welsh, the former is spelled “th” and the latter “dd.” The final syllable of “Gwynedd” sounds like the middle of “weather.” It was natural for British parents to respell Gwynedd with “th” when giving the name to a daughter, ending it with the same sound as the familiar Elizabeth and Edith.

The first Gwyneth in the United States census was Gwyneth Williams, born in Rockland County, New York, in 1856 to Welsh immigrants David and Mary. Her younger sister was the first American-born Gladys.

Want to know more? Read on to find out more about Gwyneths in history! seeking experts for interviews! is seeking name experts to be interviewed on future episodes of The Baby Names Podcast. We’ve already had the pleasure of speaking with ANS members Cleve Evans and Laurel Sutton and have received a great response.

If you have an expertise in any of the subjects, below, or know someone who does – please contact us. If you have a recommendation for another subject that you’ve researched, also let us know!

The Baby Names Podcast receives approximately 10,000 listeners per month and growing. We promote it through our site and social media and are happy to link to your social accounts and/or research. Email Jennifer Moss,, to submit yourself for a topic…or to suggest one!
  • Spanish Names and Spanish Naming Conventions
  • Shakespeare Names
  • Biblical Names / Saint’s Names
  • Early American & Puritanical Names
  • Presidents, Prime Ministers and Political Names
  • Irish Names and Naming
  • Immigration and Naming (“Americanizing Names”)
  • Chinese Names

Registration opens for the 2020 ANS Conference, New Orleans, LA, January 2-5, 2020

American Name SocietyRegistration is now open for the 2020 ANS Conference in New Orleans, LA. The ANS conference will take place in conjunction with the Linguistic Society of American (LSA) Conference from January 2-5, 2020.

To register, you must join the ANS or renew your ANS membership.

LSA Registration is now open! Go to the LSA Meeting page to register. You must be a member of the LSA (as well as the ANS) in order to attend.

You can also reserve your room at the Hilton New Orleans Riverside via the LSA. Use the LSA link to receive a special discounted room rate.

Once your membership is up to date, you can register online here, or download a PDF of the Conference Registration Form and mail it to ANS Treasurer Saundra Wright, as per the instructions on the form.

For more information about the ANS Conference and the LSA Conference, including rate and hotel information, please visit our Conference Page.

About Names: Presidents, poets and TV cowboys have helped Tyler remain a popular baby name

Director/Writer Tyler Perry (Photo by Jason Merritt/Getty Images)

Dr. Cleveland Evans writes about names for the Omaha World-Herald. In his September 13th column, he looks at the history of the name Tyler.

Tyler is an English surname indicating one’s medieval ancestor made or laid floor tiles. There were 66,056 people with the last name Tyler in 2010, making it the 509th most common surname in the United States. When the custom of turning surnames into first names began in the late 18th century, boys named Tyler appeared. In the 1840s, many were named after John Tyler (1790-1862), the 10th president.

Tyler had been elected vice president in 1841 under William Henry Harrison, the first President to die in office. Many thought Tyler should be “acting president,” but he insisted he was president, with all the powers of the office. Tyler remained a controversial figure after his term. He sided with the Confederacy in the Civil War, being elected to the Confederate Congress shortly before his death.

As a top name for men now in their 20s, Tyler is borne by scores of professional athletes — as well as Tyler Knott Gregson (born 1981), a poet famous through social media for posting daily haiku on Tumblr, Instagram and Twitter.

Want to know more? Read on to find out more about Tylers in history!

In memoriam: Alan Rayburn (1932-2019)

On the 19th of September 2019, Alan Rayburn, former president of the American Name Society and internationally recognized toponymist passed away at the age of 86. Alan is survived by his wife, Mary Teresa (née Fox); their three sons Kevin, Sean, and Garth; and their grandson Thomas. A funeral mass will be held to celebrate Alan’s life in Ottawa, Canada at St. Martin de Porres RC Church, Bells Corners, on Thursday, September 26, 2019 at 10:00 am.

The American Name Society would like to express its sincere condolences to the Rayburn family. Alan will always be remembered for his outstanding contributions to the scientific study of place names, his many decades of service to the American Name Society, and his extraordinary kindness to the ANS family. Friends and colleagues of the Alan Rayburn can share their condolences at

Toledo City Council approves airport name change

Toledo City Council on 17th September 2019 voted unanimously to officially change the name of Toledo Express Airport to the Eugene F. Kranz Toledo Express Airport.

The name change is to honor Mr. Kranz, 86, who served as flight director for Apollo 11 and directed the successful rescue mission of the Apollo 13 crew. He was born in Toledo and graduated from Central Catholic High School.

Toledo Mayor Wade Kapszukiewicz first announced his intention to change the airport’s name to honor the NASA icon. Now all that’s left is for the Federal Aviation Administration to authorize the name change.