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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 83,190 93.34% 106,153 93.41%
Spanish 1,527 1.71% 3,185 2.80%
Other Indo-European* 3,797 4.26% 3,258 2.87%
Asian Language** 379 0.43% 787 0.69%
Other 236 0.26% 265 0.23%
Total Population Age 5+ 89,129 100.00% 113,648 100.00%

Population Speaking English Less Than "Very Well" in 2000
Language Spoken at Home: Number Percent
Spanish 1,223 38.40%
Other Indo-European* 1,105 33.92%
Asian Language** 301 38.25%
Other Language 61 23.02%
Total 2,690 2.37%

Population Speaking English Less Than "Very Well" in 1990
Language Spoken at Home: Number Percent
Spanish 490 32.09%
Other Indo-European* 1,050 27.65%
Asian Language** 127 33.51%
Other Language 76 32.20%
Total 1,743 1.96%

* "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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