53 responses to 10 Common Amish Men’s Names (And 10 Rare Ones)
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    Comment on 10 Common Amish Men’s Names (And 10 Rare Ones) (April 9th, 2015 at 06:20)

    We have met an Iddo, Jethro (he was the one that rented us the Amish house) and Aquilla. We also knew Roman, Monroe, Mahlon, Ira, Stephen, Atley, Isaac. Isaiah, Lester, Levi, and Toby.

    • Interesting Tammy. Two other names that aren’t too common but I particularly like are Malva and Ola.

      But Ola trips me up sometimes because in Polish it is the diminutive form of the female name Aleksandra. I only know one Amish Ola.

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      Comment on Tammy,,,, (April 11th, 2015 at 10:31)


      Tammy , the names which you mentioned are from the Dixon Missouri , Amish Community,,,right????
      I know some of them too, but have not heard from them in a Long time ….
      I know the Bishop’s Ex Amish Son and family in Kentucky,,,,would love hearing more about that area….e-mail at followjesusonly@gmail.com

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    Carl Oliver
    Comment on Names (April 9th, 2015 at 07:03)


    Here in Buchanan county Iowa we definitely have a lot of the names you mentioned. I would add Rudy, Andy, Jonas, and Reuben.

    • Good familiar names. Here’s what I found for Rudy, or Rudolf, at behindthename.com:

      Rudolf- From the Germanic name Hrodulf, which was derived from the elements hrod “fame” and wulf “wolf”.

      Dictionary of First Names gives it as “Hrodwulf”, but with a line over the “o”.

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    Gretchen Troyer H
    Comment on 10 Common Amish Men’s Names (And 10 Rare Ones) (April 9th, 2015 at 08:17)

    My sons’ names are Levi, Jacob, Micah, Samuel, Caleb, and Noah, and I get asked all the time if I chose Amish names. We chose Biblical names on purpose, but weren’t thinking of Amish names specifically. (My first son’s name is Troyer, which I guess technically is Amish!)

    • Nice, I like Troyer as a first name. Of your other sons, Levi, Jacob, Samuel, and Noah are all common among Amish, while Caleb and Micah not really. I’ve never figured out why certain Biblical names enjoy popularity among Amish and others not so much or not at all.

      John, as I’ve mentioned above, is a very common name. Of the other three Gospel writers, Mark is probably the next-most common, followed by Matthew (have only come across a few Matthews among Amish). I don’t think I’ve ever met or heard of an Amish Luke.

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        Gretchen Troyer H
        Comment on 10 Common Amish Men’s Names (And 10 Rare Ones) (April 9th, 2015 at 09:21)

        We chose Troyer because my father had three girls and no sons to carry on his name. My older sister used his first name, I used his last name, and the third sister used his middle name! His middle name is Gideon, by the way, which did come to him through his Amish roots (Gideon was his grandfather’s middle name, and his great-grandfather’s first name).

        While doing family history research, I’ve come across some very unusual girls’ names; some sound like they were just made up! I hope you will write a companion post with girls’ names.

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    Comment on Mens names (April 9th, 2015 at 08:47)

    Mens names

    My favorite around here is Benuel.We have a few of them.

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    Comment on 10 Common Amish Men’s Names (And 10 Rare Ones) (April 9th, 2015 at 08:49)

    I guess some of these names that are more common are family names, would you say? I know in my own family certain names seems to repeat themselves over family history.

    On an off topic note, I got distracted by a lot of things and haven’t given a lot of time replying to Amish American, I’ve read and “lurked”, this story intrigues me

    • Shom, first, how nice to hear from you again. I was just wondering the other day if you were still out there.

      I do think family naming traditions have a lot to do with particular names persisting over the generations. People get their uncles’ and aunts’ and grandparents’ names. The interesting part, which is harder to know, is when and how a given name entered the Amish.

      Putting myself in the theoretical outsider’s shoes who knows little about the Amish, I’d probably assume Amish names were all Biblical. But as we see, a lot aren’t.

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    Comment on Common names (April 9th, 2015 at 09:10)

    Common names

    Roman, Mahlon, Mervin, and Amos are all common in the Allen County area. I really enjoyed this article, and would love to see the female names. I’ll bet Katie tops the list! Speaking of people who we haven’t heard from lately, where is Mark?

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      Comment on Mark (April 10th, 2015 at 04:54)


      I don’t know Harriet, we haven’t heard from him in awhile. Hopefully if he reads this he’ll know he’s missed around here.

      Look for a 10 female names list next week.

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    Karen Johnson-Weiner
    Comment on 10 Common Amish Men’s Names (And 10 Rare Ones) (April 9th, 2015 at 09:27)

    Some good Swartzentruber names: Harvey, Gideon, Mose (Moses), Enos, Henry–I know a lot of these! I’ve never met a Swartzentruber Wayne, Leroy, Vernon, or Mervin. (Of course, that doesn’t mean there aren’t any!)

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      Comment on Agree with Swartzie Names (April 9th, 2015 at 10:38)

      Agree with Swartzie Names

      Yep, Karen, I have 3 Harveys in my life now. And a Mosie (Moses), Levi, Jonas, & a Monroe.

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    Debbie W
    Comment on 10 Common Amish Men’s Names (And 10 Rare Ones) (April 9th, 2015 at 10:00)

    In Lancaster I’ve come across two people named Omar. No idea how they came to use that name. Also, my friend’s don’s name is Daniel-Lee. Daniel is quite popular but Lee, not quite sure. Two names together as a first name is quite unusual I would think.

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      Comment on Omar (April 9th, 2015 at 10:09)


      That one surprised me too Debbie. You’ve also got Omer, and Homer. Here’s a snippet from Wikipedia on the name:

      “Omar, Omer, Ömer or Umar (Arabic: عمر‎, Hebrew: עומר‎), is a male given name of Arabic and Hebrew origin, mentioned in the Book of Genesis. It is a common name in Arab and Muslim territories and populations in general, as well as in Spanish-speaking countries.”

      The Dictionary of First Names adds that it apparently means “talkative” in Hebrew.

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    Debbie W
    Comment on 10 Common Amish Men’s Names (And 10 Rare Ones) (April 9th, 2015 at 10:01)

    Sorry. It should be my friend’s son’s name

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    Shirley Chapel
    Comment on 10 Common Amish Men’s Names (And 10 Rare Ones) (April 9th, 2015 at 10:08)

    One of the writers of the book Plain Faith was once an Amish man. His name is Ora Jay. I guess that would be first name and middle name. But both names are used in the true story they wrote about their life.
    His wife Irene referred to him as Ora Jay.

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    Barb Zimmerman
    Comment on Amish Men Names (April 9th, 2015 at 10:43)

    Amish Men Names

    Around here Levi, Benjamin, Matthew, Mark, Luke, Jesse, David, Lyle.

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    Comment on 10 Common Amish Men’s Names (And 10 Rare Ones) (April 9th, 2015 at 14:15)

    It’s funny – pop culture has ‘Jebediah’ as the stereotypical Amish name, but in all my reading, I don’t think I’ve come across a single occurrence of it in real life. At most, I think some conservative Amish groups might be more likely to use longer, less common Biblical names – in a couple of news stories about Amish opposition to SMV triangles, I’ve seen the names Ananias and ‘Hecekiah’ (presumably a variant spelling or journalistic misspelling of Hezekiah).

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      Comment on Jebediah (April 10th, 2015 at 04:56)


      I think Weird Al’s Amish Paradise video helped that along, Jebediah and Jacob were two names he used. You’re right, never heard of an Amish Jebediah.

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    Terry from Wisc
    Comment on Mens names (April 9th, 2015 at 15:04)

    Mens names

    How about Felty, Firman, Freeman, Aden, Marion, Alvin is popular, Ura, Uriah, Urias, Melvin, Marvin, Mervin, Mahlon, Milan, Ora..Orrie for short..,Perry, Mose or Moses, Toby, Tobias, Tobe, John, Samuel, Calvin, Amos, Levi, Ely, Lester, Leroy, Jacob, William…not Bill, Martin, Marty or just Mart, Chester or Chet, Titus, Cletus, Lewis, Christ, Jack, Jackie, Jeckie, Henry, Enos, Jonas, Joni(pronounced Joe-ni, Delmar, LaVern, LaMar, Menno, Owen, Abe, Atlee, Aaron, Albert, Andy…just to name a few!

    Many of these names are men I personally know. The Budget came today so I found some others.

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    Jane Staiger
    Comment on Common Amish Men's Names and Rare Ones (April 9th, 2015 at 16:24)

    Common Amish Men's Names and Rare Ones

    My son in law is a fireman in Glen Burnie MD. In his house is an Amish man. His name is Esh. He told my son in law that when he visits his parents, he must dress in the clothes he left home in, and bring no electronics in the home. His parents were not allowed to attend his graduation from the Fire Academy. They are very much old school, they do farming. I look forward to meeting him the next time I visit the fire house with goodies.

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    Katie Troyer
    Comment on 10 Common Amish Men’s Names (And 10 Rare Ones) (April 9th, 2015 at 17:03)

    Where is David and Daniel and Paul?

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    Al in Ky
    Comment on 10 Common Amish Men’s Names (And 10 Rare Ones) (April 9th, 2015 at 17:20)

    Other Amish names — Oba (also called Obie), Joas, Josie (have
    met several Josies through the years). I was surprised when I first met an Amish man named Josie, because I had always thought of that as a woman’s name. Also I think Menno, Enos, and Christ (pronounced with a short “i”, not long “i” like Jesus Christ)are
    quite common.

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    Comment on 10 Common Amish Men’s Names (And 10 Rare Ones) (April 9th, 2015 at 20:15)

    My ancestors were Amish and one male ancestor was named “Plesa” We believe the name comes from the Old Testament, but we are not sure which part.

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    Comment on 10 common amish men's names (April 9th, 2015 at 22:22)

    10 common amish men's names

    Knew a Phineas in Reno County, Kansas (yoder) but he recently passed. He had an “antique” shop and had interesting things for sale. His name was pronounced Feenis, but spelled Phineas. Also know an Atley there. My grandpa was Enos and great grandpa was Shem.

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    Comment on 10 Common Amish Men’s Names (And 10 Rare Ones) (April 9th, 2015 at 22:54)

    The name Hannes is short for the German Johannes. I knew a man who went by Hannes when I was in the German choir in Fort Wayne. He immigrated from Germany to Indiana some years ago and was a Tischler (carpenter or woodworker, as in one who makes furniture)by trade. I once was made aware that the name John is Sean in Irish Gaelic, Ian in Scottish Gaelic, Jean in French, Johannes and Johann in German, Jan in Polish and some other Slavic languages, and Ivan in Russian. All were derived from the Hebrew Yochanan (ch as in “J.S. Bach”). Perhaps some of the odder names are German derivatives of Bible names? Just guessing there. Blessings.

    • Thanks Nicholas, and for the variations of “John”. My middle name is “Jan”, and that was also my grandfather’s first name.

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        Terry from Wisc
        Comment on It's all in the name... (April 10th, 2015 at 13:08)

        It's all in the name...

        I looked up Jan in th elist of Norwegian names and this is what I found. “Jan” male..Dutch, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Czech, Polish, Slovene, German, Catalan
        Form of JOHANNES. This name was borne by the 15th-century Flemish painter Jan van Eyck and the 17th-century Dutch painter Jan Vermeer.

        Hey Erik, Our Eric is with a c instead of a k so he wouldn’t have to correct everyone who would write his name! lol!

        Have you ever watched Dr Pol the vet who is on Sat night? His name is Jan and he’s from Holland. We had a dr in town who was Jan. A friend told me years ago that when you find a name for the baby that is on the way, you holler it out the back door and if it has a good flow to it, then use it! lol So, your name I feel goes better as Eric Yahn instead of Eric Jan. Our kid is Eric Andrew, and he has 3 sibs that are Emily, Evan and Elden!

        • Mine often becomes Erik with a “c” when others write it, but that doesn’t bother me. The best is when the last name gets messed up too, so I become “Eric Western”. Sounds like a Viking cowboy character 🙂

          I have not seen Dr. Pol.

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        Comment on 10 Common Amish Men’s Names (And 10 Rare Ones) (April 10th, 2015 at 16:39)

        That’s neat that you have your grandfather’s name.

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    Osiah Horst
    Comment on 10 Common Amish Men’s Names (And 10 Rare Ones) (April 10th, 2015 at 07:26)

    I am not Amish but Mennonite, which is very similar. I have never heard of an Amish Osiah but where I come from my name is fairly common. I have a grandson Shaphan Isaac. Shaphan was chief scribe for King Josiah and helped him with the great reformation. Isaac is a more common name – someone wondered what my son was expecting of his son considering who the biblical Shaphan was. And Isaac, well around here he is known as a “famous Mennonite historian.” Luke and Leander are fairly common names here. Fermon, Tilman, Angus, Amsey, Benjamin, Elo, and Ivan are other names in use by Ontario Old Order Mennonites.

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    Don Curtis
    Comment on Common Amish Men's Names (April 10th, 2015 at 12:22)

    Common Amish Men's Names

    I asked Mark what some of the common Amish names are in the Belle Center area. He said that all of the following names are used more than once in the community: Daniel, Marvin, James, Chester, Levi, Matthew, Mahlon, Steven, Curtis, Conrad, Joseph, Thomas, Nathan, Leon, Mark, Samuel, Paul,

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    Comment on Hannes (April 16th, 2015 at 07:04)


    My husband’s boss is German (and still lives in Europe). His name is Hans Joachim, but everyone called him Hannes.

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    Deb Simmering
    Comment on Amish Names (June 24th, 2015 at 14:19)

    Amish Names

    Around where I live, we have Jonah, Marvin, Jeb, Josiah, David, Daniel, Eli, John. I went to school with an Arden and he wasn’t even Amish.

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    Melissa Hedge
    Comment on Names (June 25th, 2015 at 11:19)


    My kids are: Elizabeth, Rebekah, Micah Josiah, and Hannah…we often get comments regarding their names, especially Rebekah’s and Micah’s. My brother-in-law even commented that, “Some Amish man is missing his name.” when my son was born (we were living just outside Philly at that time, and of course, my BIL knew of my fascination of the Amish.)

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    Comment on Henry and Stephen (July 2nd, 2015 at 08:42)

    Henry and Stephen

    I am surprised that David, Henry, and Stephen did not make the list. I have several distant relatives between the Yoder’s and Troyer’s named Henry and David.

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    Kay Stahl
    Comment on 10 Common Amish Men’s Names (And 10 Rare Ones) (July 2nd, 2015 at 21:50)

    I looked up the names in the Church and Family Directory of the Upper Valleys of Pennsylvania for our area (South White Deer District). The most common male names were: Elmer, Benjamin, Stephen(Steven), John (Jonathan), Emmanuel, Samuel, Henry, Daniel and Isaac. The more uncommon ones were: Bena, Phares, Arie, Chester, Lloyd, Leon, Norman, Jerry and Melvin.

    • Kay thanks for sharing this here and on the other posts about the Upper Valleys. One jumped out at me here–Bena, which I thought was a female name (at least I thought I knew of a female someone in the Holmes County Amish going by that name). Interesting to see too that some of the least common here would be rather common in other places.

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    Doug Douglass
    Comment on 10 Common Amish Men’s Names (And 10 Rare Ones) (October 26th, 2015 at 12:29)

    I haven’t seen the name Lemuel mentioned.

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    Robert M. Snyder
    Comment on "Wollie" (April 4th, 2017 at 13:54)


    I have a friend who was born and raised in Germany. His name is Wolfgang, but his friends call him Wolle. Maybe Wollie is a variation on Wolle, and a nickname for Wolfgang.

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    Comment on More names (September 3rd, 2017 at 21:54)

    More names

    I’ve spent a lot of time personally with Amish in MN and WI (I used to do work with them). I imagine first names are different in different regions, as are surnames. I’ve often heard the male names Benjamin and Matthew, Aaron, Isaiah. These are common.

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    Comment on Can you find the "H"umor (August 19th, 2018 at 12:33)

    Can you find the "H"umor

    Instead of swearing, saying “Get the ‘H’ outta here?”, or “What the ‘h”?” are common ways around one swear word.

    When I was reading the “Rare” ~ Uncommon Amish mens names, I saw Phenis, and said to my 17 year old son, “Get the “h” outta here!!”, pointing to the name…

    We IMMEDIATELY BURST OUT IN LAUGHTER, when looking at the name in a modified way…

    Cool article though. I have had the pleasure of getting to know many Amish families over my travels in the Mid West where I live, and TOTALLY Appreciate the Vast Majority of their way of life.

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