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The Census asks questions about language use at home to locate groups of people who speak a language other than English. Their isolation or integration into a primarily English speaking community can be determined by their ability to speak English proficiently.

Language Spoken at Home, 1990-2000
1990 2000
Number Percent Number Percent
Only English 15,212 98.29% 16,429 98.03%
Spanish 106 0.68% 186 1.11%
Other Indo-European* 136 0.88% 43 0.26%
Asian Language** 6 0.04% 46 0.27%
Other 16 0.10% 55 0.33%
Total Population Age 5+ 15,476 100.00% 16,759 100.00%

Population Speaking English Less Than "Very Well" in 2000
Language Spoken at Home: Number Percent
Spanish 52 27.96%
Other Indo-European* 5 11.63%
Asian Language** 20 43.48%
Other Language 9 16.36%
Total 86 0.51%

Population Speaking English Less Than "Very Well" in 1990
Language Spoken at Home: Number Percent
Spanish 58 54.72%
Other Indo-European* 50 36.76%
Asian Language** 1 16.67%
Other Language 9 56.25%
Total 118 0.76%

* "Other Indo-European" excludes English and Spanish. "Indo-European" is not synonymous with "European." French, German, Hindi, and Persian are all classified as Indo-European. Hungarian, on the other hand, is lumped into "Other Language."

** "Asian Language" includes languages indigenous to Asia and Pacific islands areas that are not also Indo-European languages. Chinese, Japanese, Telugu, and Hawaiian are all classified here.

Also note that ability to speak English "very well" is based on the self-assessment of those responding to Census questions, not on a test of language ability.

Source: Census 2000 analyzed by the Social Science Data Analysis Network (SSDAN).

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