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National Carter Day – January 9, 2025

If you’re wondering how to celebrate National Carter Day, which falls on January 9, the answer is simple: listen to some great music. We say that because two of the world’s most famous hip hop artists are technically known as Carters; Lil Wayne, also known as Dwayne Michael Carter Jr., and Jay-Z, who was born Shawn Corey Carter. Of course, these are both family names, but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t count. Whether your name is Carter or your surname today we’re celebrating you.

History of National Carter Day

Carter is one of those names that originated as a surname or family name but later became a favorite choice for parents when naming their newborn babies, predominantly sons. It is considered a gender-neutral English name that means carrier of commodities. Thanks to U.S. President Jimmy Carter, the English occupational surname first gained popularity in the 1970s. It is also associated with flash and elegance, as it sits opposite its French luxury sibling, Cartier. Carter is a charming name with historical and cultural significance.

The name is of Irish, Scottish, and English origin, and an Irish reduced form of the name McCarter meaning son of and its appearance and pronunciation as Carter being the Anglicized form of the Irish Mac Artir. The name comes from the Gaelic word ‘cairt,’ which means ‘cart,’ and then from the Latin ‘carettarius.’ Furthermore, the word ‘cairtear,’ meaning tourist or sojourner in Gaelic, is related.

People of European ancestry with this surname may have ancestors from Ireland, England, or Scotland. Over the last 150 years, the Carter surname has been widely adopted by African Americans who were taken from slave-masters by formerly enslaved people after emancipation and the 13 Amendment or through the standard mixing of Irish immigrants and free African Americans. It is the 44 most common surname in the United States, the 56 most common in England, the 428 most common in Ireland, where it is the 70 most common surname in County Laois, and the 274 most common in Scotland.

National Carter Day timeline

Black History Month

Carter G. Woodson, an American historian, establishes the precursor week to this month.

Jack Carter

The British film “Get Carter,” starring Michael Caine, based on Ted Lewis’ novel is released.

The Band

Carter Beauford becomes a drummer in the Dave Matthews Band in Charlottesville, Virginia.

An Academy Award Nominee

American composer Carter Burwell is nominated for an Oscar for his work on the film “Carol.”

National Carter Day FAQs

Is “Get Carter” a true story?

The guy whose life was the inspiration for the cult film hit “Get Carter” has died. Michael Luvaglio fought for more than 50 years to clear his name after being found guilty of the ‘one-armed bandit’ murder that inspired a book and a successful film.

What did Carter G. Woodson do after he became a teacher?

Aside from his work, Woodson held several academic roles. He was the principal of Washington, D.C.’s Armstrong Manual Training School before becoming a dean at Howard University and the West Virginia Collegiate Institute.

How old is the last name Carter?

Jocius Caretarius, Oxfordshire; Juliana le Cartere, Cambridgeshire; Nicholas le Carter, Oxfordshire; John le Cartere, Norfolk; Robert le Caretter, Huntingdonshire; and Margaret le Careter, Huntingdonshire were all recorded in the Hundredorum Rolls of 1273.

National Carter Day Activities

  1. Watch “Carol”

    This film is about a young woman named Therese Belivet who works in a department store in Manhattan. She meets the lovely Carol, a middle-aged married woman. When Therese develops strong feelings for Carol, things take an unexpected turn. Though, the real reason you should watch “Carol” on National Carter Day is to experience the beautiful score of the film, composed by Carter Burwell.

  2. Listen to the Dave Matthews Band

    ‘Crash Into Me’ might be their most famous song, but the Dave Matthews Band has a very extensive discography that you can dig into. Invite some friends over, cook them something nice and put on some music from the band. Doing so honors band member Carter Beauford and any Carters in attendance.

  3. Celebrate Black history

    Carter G. Woodson’s legacy lives every February with the celebration of Black History Month, as he was the mind behind this important event. That doesn’t mean that you only have to celebrate history in that particular month. You can also start honoring Woodson’s legacy on National Carter Day by telling your friends about him and writing about him on your social media platforms.

5 Famous Carters

  1. Carter Blackburn

    Blackburn is an American sportscaster who CBS Sports currently contracts from ESPN.

  2. Carter Braxton

    He was a Virginian politician who signed the U.S Declaration of Independence.

  3. Carter Camper

    Camper is a professional ice hockey player who plays for the Swedish Hockey League.

  4. Carter Harrison Jr.

    Harrison was a newspaper publisher and Democratic politician and an ex-Chicago mayor.

  5. Carter B. Magruder

    Magruder was a celebrated U.S. Army general who served as Commander-in-Chief.

Why We Love National Carter Day

  1. It honors names and surnames

    National Carter Day is one of those special name appreciation days that have a dual purpose as it celebrates both given names and surnames. The fact that this happens means it doubles the select group of people, so in turn, more people can celebrate. The extra lucky ones are the Carter Carters.

  2. Celebrates an essential historical figure

    One of the leading figures in the African American rights movement is the man who created an event that would later become known as Black History Month. His name was Carter Godwin Woodson, and he was an American historian, author, and journalist. We love it when a name celebration can include some noteworthy figures that form part of history and who have a lasting impact on society today.

  3. Celebrates Irish, Scottish, and English origins

    There are countless Carters in the United States, though the name has Irish, Scottish, and English origins. That means we can honor those foreign histories and cultures where the name was created and possibly even look for more names from those regions when it comes to naming the next generation.

National Carter Day dates

2025January 9Thursday
2026January 9Friday
2027January 9Saturday
2028January 9Sunday
2029January 9Tuesday

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