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Columbia County

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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 54,768 93.42% 55,726 93.31%
Spanish 995 1.70% 1,256 2.10%
Other Indo-European* 2,669 4.55% 2,541 4.25%
Asian Language** 68 0.12% 117 0.20%
Other 126 0.21% 82 0.14%
Total Population Age 5+ 58,626 100.00% 59,722 100.00%

Population Speaking English Less Than "Very Well" in 2000
Language Spoken at Home: Number Percent
Spanish 406 32.32%
Other Indo-European* 792 31.17%
Asian Language** 35 29.91%
Other Language 39 47.56%
Total 1,272 2.13%

Population Speaking English Less Than "Very Well" in 1990
Language Spoken at Home: Number Percent
Spanish 396 39.80%
Other Indo-European* 885 33.16%
Asian Language** 24 35.29%
Other Language 46 36.51%
Total 1,351 2.30%

* "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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