Most nights we run a job that goes through a list of personal names in WorldCat that should be linked to the LC/NACO authority file and link about 400,000 of them. Here are the top names from last night:
Chaucer, Geoffrey,‡dd. 1400
Wodehouse, P. G.‡q(Pelham Grenville),‡d1881-1975
Disraeli, Benjamin,‡cEarl of Beaconsfield,‡d1804-1881
Sousa, John Philip,‡d1854-1932
Everyone except Louis Armstrong was born before 1900. Here's the list from the previous night:
Rilke, Rainer Maria,‡d1875-1926
Vega, Lope de,‡d1562-1635
La Fontaine, Jean de,‡d1621-1695
McClure, Louis Charles,‡d1867-1957.
The most recent birth date is 1875. Another list from over the weekend (from 700,000 headings):
Erasmus, Desiderius,‡dd. 1536
Gogh, Vincent van,‡d1853-1890
Foster, Stephen Collins,‡d1826-1864
Johnson, Lyndon B.‡q(Lyndon Baines),‡d1908-1973
García Márquez, Gabriel,‡d1928-
Milne, A. A.‡q(Alan Alexander),‡d1882-1956
A 1928 date (or 1927 according to the German authority file), someone that is still alive. Interesting that it is a Columbian author that rates so highly (he won a Nobel prize for literature in 1982).
Now these aren't random names (they all have at least two subfields), but still, I'm struck by how early these common names in WorldCat tend to be.