Census 2000 showed that the United States population on April 1, 2000 was 281.4 million. Of the total, 216.9 million, or 77.1 percent, reported1 White. This number includes 211.5 million people, or 75.1 percent, who reported only White in addition to 5.5 million people, or 1.9 percent, who reported White as well as one or more other races. Census 2000 asked separate questions on race and Hispanic or Latino origin. Hispanics who reported their race as White, either alone or in combination with one or more other races, are included in the numbers for Whites.
This report, part of a series that analyzes population and housing data collected from Census 2000, provides a portrait of the White population in the United States and discusses its distribution at both the national and subnational levels. It is based on the Census 2000 Redistricting Data (Public Law 94-171) Summary File, which was among the first Census 2000 data products to be released and is used by each state to draw boundaries for legislative districts.2
The term “White” refers to people having origins in any of the original peoples of Europe, the Middle East, or North Africa. It includes people who reported “White” or wrote in entries such as Irish, German, Italian, Lebanese, Near Easterner, Arab, or Polish.
Data on race has been collected since the first U.S. decennial census in 1790. Whites have been enumerated in every census.
1 In this report, the term “reported” is used to refer to the answers provided by respondents, as well as responses assigned during the editing and imputation processes.
2 This report discusses data for 50 states and the District of Columbia, but not Puerto Rico. The Census 2000 Redistricting Data (Public Law 94-171) Summary File was released on a state-by-state basis in March 2001.