Etymology & Historical Origin of the Baby Name Houston

Houston is the transferred use of a English-Scottish surname which most likely developed from a place name so-called “Hugh’s town” from the Germanic element “hug” meaning “heart, mind and spirit” and the Middle English “tūn” meaning “town, settlement”. Both Hugh and Hugo were personal names taken up by the aristocracy of medieval France no doubt due to the name’s favorable meaning, i.e., an intelligent person, or one who is bright in heart, mind and spirit. The French introduced the name to Britain via the Normans after the conquest of 1066 and Hugh subsequently became very common in medieval England. Saint Hugh of Lincoln (12th century) and Little Saint Hugh of Lincoln (13th century) were two well-known English saints of the Middle Ages; their popularity further cemented the usage of Hugh among English-speakers. The Scottish gaelicized “Huchon” (a French diminutive of Hugh) to “Mac Uistean” (basically, son of Hugh) which is how the clan name came to be in Scotland. The first recorded spelling of the surname occurred in Scotland in the late 13th century and was rendered as “de Hustone”. In terms of American significance, Houston, TX (established in 1836) was named in honor of Sam Houston (1793-1863), himself descended from the Scottish-Irish. Sam Houston was a key figure in the fight for (and ultimate victory in) Texas’s Independence from Mexico.

All About the Baby Name – Houston

Personality

OF THE BOY NAME HOUSTON

The number Four personality is marked by stability and discipline. This is the personality that follows the rules and is conservative by nature.  They have an earth-bound energy that prefers to build things methodically on top of firm foundations; they don't cut corners. Fours take their time and don't like to be hurried. But the outcome of their endeavors is likely to result in some strong and useful structure, which makes them great engineers and inventors. Fours are anything but frivolous or controversial. This is a trustworthy, straight-forward personality that embodies dedication and organization. They are the backbone and anchor in their relationships, careers and communities. They are tidy, punctual, and full of integrity. Hard-work comes naturally to a Four and they are immensely reliable. This is the personality you can always count on.

Popularity

OF THE BOY NAME HOUSTON

Houston is another example of a surname that has been used as a first name long before it became a trendy naming practice in America. The name dates back to the late 19th century and most likely was bestowed in honor of Sam Houston – a real hero to the Texans. Yet Houston is not just a surname; it’s a place name too. Houston is the largest city in Texas and the 4th largest city in the United States. Dallas and Austin are other Texas city names bestowed on little boys today. Armadillo and Waco? Um, not so much. Houston was used with impressive moderation over 100 years ago but today it’s just not one of the most common surnames-turned-first-names (those honors belong to Mason, Jackson and Logan). Even though Houston covers two huge naming styles popular in the United States today (i.e., Last Names as First Names and Geographical Place Names), the name is still extremely rare. In fact, Houston is dangerously close to falling off the American boy’s naming charts any year now. He resides at the very bottom on the Top 1000 list. We do like the historical significance of this name for Texans, and the name’s etymology is among our favorites (“heart, mind and spirit”) – not to mention Houston can always be shortened to Hugh.

Quick Facts

ON HOUSTON

GENDER:

Boy

ORIGIN:

English

NUMBER OF SYLLABLES:

2

RANKING POPULARITY:

973

PRONUNCIATION:

HEW-stun

SIMPLE MEANING:

Hugh's Town

Characteristics

OF HOUSTON

Dependable

Solid

Practical

Hard-working

Industrious

Studious

Conservative

Cultural References to the Baby Name – Houston

Literary Characters

OF THE BABY NAME HOUSTON

We cannot find any significant literary characters by the name of Houston

Popular Songs

ON HOUSTON

Houston We Have a Problem
a song by Lonely Kings

Houston Is Hot Tonight
a song by Iggy Pop

Houston
a song by R.E.M.

Home to Houston
a song by Steve Earle

Heaven, Hell, or Houston
a song by ZZ Top

Fueled for Houston
a song by Wilson Phillips

Dallas to Houston
a song by South Park Mexican

Famous People

NAMED HOUSTON

Houston Jiménez (baseball player)

Children of Famous People

NAMED HOUSTON

We cannot find any children of famous people with the first name Houston

Historic Figures

WITH THE NAME HOUSTON

Kit Carson is one of the best known characters in the pantheon of the American Old West. He was born in the Missouri Territory and apprenticed at a young age to a saddle-maker, but this was not the life for Kit. At the age of fourteen he ran off and started his extraordinary life with fur-trapping. As such, he mingled with Native American tribes and married first, an Arapaho woman and after her death, a Cheyenne. Although he could neither read nor write (except to sign his name) Kit was proficient in Spanish, French, and several Native American languages. His teaming up with John C. Fremont was serendipitous – he worked as a guide for Fremont and during their long association, Kit Carson was present on expeditions into the Sierra Nevada and the Oregon Trail, and took part in California’s Bear Flag rebellion. The tales of these exploits made Kit the subject of dime novels during his lifetime; his popularity only grew wider after his death. Kit Carson worked as a federal Indian Agent and while he advocated for the reservation system, it is generally believed that he did so in the spirit of trying to protect the native people from the growing hostility on the part of white settlers. Nonetheless, he was one of those responsible for the relocation of thousands of Navajo to a reservation in New Mexico, an episode that became known as the Long Walk, which resulted in the deaths of hundreds. After serving in the Union Army during the Civil War, Kit Carson retired to the life of a rancher in Colorado. In 1868 he traveled to Washington D. C. in order to plead for assistance on behalf of the Ute tribe. Certainly a man of his times, and manifesting the overriding sense of superiority of the white man, Carson still appears to have been closer than many to our somewhat more enlightened times.

Kit Carson is one of the best known characters in the pantheon of the American Old West. He was born in the Missouri Territory and apprenticed at a young age to a saddle-maker, but this was not the life for Kit. At the age of fourteen he ran off and started his extraordinary life with fur-trapping. As such, he mingled with Native American tribes and married first, an Arapaho woman and after her death, a Cheyenne. Although he could neither read nor write (except to sign his name) Kit was proficient in Spanish, French, and several Native American languages. His teaming up with John C. Fremont was serendipitous – he worked as a guide for Fremont and during their long association, Kit Carson was present on expeditions into the Sierra Nevada and the Oregon Trail, and took part in California’s Bear Flag rebellion. The tales of these exploits made Kit the subject of dime novels during his lifetime; his popularity only grew wider after his death. Kit Carson worked as a federal Indian Agent and while he advocated for the reservation system, it is generally believed that he did so in the spirit of trying to protect the native people from the growing hostility on the part of white settlers. Nonetheless, he was one of those responsible for the relocation of thousands of Navajo to a reservation in New Mexico, an episode that became known as the Long Walk, which resulted in the deaths of hundreds. After serving in the Union Army during the Civil War, Kit Carson retired to the life of a rancher in Colorado. In 1868 he traveled to Washington D. C. in order to plead for assistance on behalf of the Ute tribe. Certainly a man of his times, and manifesting the overriding sense of superiority of the white man, Carson still appears to have been closer than many to our somewhat more enlightened times.