A man named Delos had a father named Shirley.
This raised a few eyebrows when we were filling out legal forms. I didn’t much question it earlier on because he was always Grandpa Shirley to me.
But I got to thinking about it recently and did some research.
Of all the people named Shirley, 99.41% are female and 0.59% are male.
It was given by Charlotte Brontë to the heroine of her novel Shirley (1849). According to the novel, her parents had selected the name in prospect of a male child and used it regardless. Shirley had earlier been used as a boy’s name (Charlotte Brontë refers to it as a ‘masculine cognomen’), but this literary influence fixed it firmly as a girl’s name. It was strongly reinforced during the 1930s and 40s by the popularity of the child film star Shirley Temple. (Source.)
Shirley was a hard-working, friendly, spiritually minded, unassuming, and unpretentious man. And look at the son he gave the world.