This name came into public view with the 1982 film Savannah Smiles, about a little rich girl who runs away from home and ends up with two bumbling jailbreakers. Savannah rose to popularity with the popularity of other place names, like Dakota, Madison, etc.

Savannah's popularity in the USA rode in with the trend of using place names as first names in the 80s and 90s (witness Dakota, Madison, London etc). The place name Savannah in Georgia was named because the name "Savannah" means "Shawnee"--deriving from the Muskoghean Indian word Sawanoki, the native name of the Shawnees.
See Also: Savanna

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