September 20, 2010
Written by C.N.
September 15 through October 15 is Hispanic Heritage Month. Below is an historical summary and a few noteworthy statistics published by the Census Bureau for this occasion:
In September 1968, Congress authorized President Lyndon B. Johnson to proclaim National Hispanic Heritage Week, which was observed during the week that included Sept. 15 and Sept. 16. The observance was expanded in 1988 to a month-long celebration (Sept. 15 – Oct. 15). America celebrates the culture and traditions of those who trace their roots to Spain, Mexico and the Spanish-speaking nations of Central America, South America and the Caribbean.
Sept. 15 was chosen as the starting point for the celebration because it is the anniversary of independence of five Latin American countries: Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Nicaragua. In addition, Mexico and Chile celebrate their independence days on Sept. 16 and Sept. 18, respectively.
The estimated Hispanic population of the United States as of July 1, 2009, making people of Hispanic origin the nation’s largest ethnic or race minority. Hispanics constituted 16 percent of the nation’s total population. In addition, there are approximately 4 million residents of Puerto Rico, a Caribbean U.S. territory.
Percentage increase in the Hispanic population between July 1, 2008, and July 1, 2009, making Hispanics the fastest-growing minority group.
The nation’s Hispanic population during the 1990 Census.
The projected Hispanic population of the United States on July 1, 2050. According to this projection, Hispanics will constitute 30 percent of the nation’s population by that date.
The percentage of Hispanic-origin people in the United States who were of Mexican background in 2008. Another 9 percent were of Puerto Rican background, with 3.4 percent Cuban, 3.4 percent Salvadoran and 2.8 percent Dominican. The remainder was of some other Central American, South American or other Hispanic or Latino origin.
Median age of the Hispanic population in 2009. This compared with 36.8 years for the population as a whole.
Number of Hispanic males in 2009 per every 100 Hispanic females. This was in sharp contrast to the overall population, which had 97 males per every 100 females.
The percentage of the Hispanic-origin population that lived in California or Texas in 2009. California was home to 13.7 million Hispanics, and Texas was home to 9.1 million.
The percentage of New Mexico’s population that was Hispanic in 2009, the highest of any state (New Mexico had 916,000 Hispanics). Hispanics also made up at least one fifth of the population in California and Texas, at 37 percent each, followed by Arizona (31 percent), Nevada (26 percent), Florida (22 percent) and Colorado (20 percent).
Number of the nation’s 3,143 counties that were majority-Hispanic.
The number of Hispanic-owned businesses in 2007, up 43.6 percent from 2002.
Receipts generated by Hispanic-owned businesses in 2007, up 55.5 percent from 2002.
The number of U.S. residents 5 and older who spoke Spanish at home in 2008. Those who hablan español constituted 12 percent of U.S. residents. More than half of these Spanish speakers spoke English “very well.”
The number of Hispanic surnames ranked among the 15 most common in 2000. It was the first time that a Hispanic surname reached the top 15 during a census. Garcia was the most frequent Hispanic surname, occurring 858,289 times and placing eighth on the list — up from 18th in 1990. Rodriguez (ninth), Martinez (11th) and Hernandez (15th) were the next most common Hispanic surnames.
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Suggested reference: Le, C.N. . "14 Statistics for Hispanic Heritage Month" Asian-Nation: The Landscape of Asian America. <http://www.asian-nation.org/headlines/2010/09/14-statistics-hispanic-heritage-month/> ().
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