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On the 2000 Census questionnaire, "race" and "Hispanic ethnicity" are listed as separate questions. A person of Hispanic ethnicity is anyone who identifies with that social group, and so can be of any race. This can make data on race and ethnicity difficult to interpret.

Race data is also difficult to compare from Census to Census because categories have changed over time. For example, the 2000 Census was the first to offer the category "Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander," and those people could have responded in a number of different ways in previous years.

The 2000 Census also marked the first time that respondents were allowed to select more than one racial category. On earlier Censuses, multiracial individuals were asked to choose a single racial category, or respond as "Some Other Race." For more information on the multiracial population in 2000, please see the multiracial profile.

If you are interested in the distribution of races in cities and across metropolitan areas, you might find our section on segregation to be helpful.

Hispanic Population and Race Distribution for Non-Hispanic Population
1980 1990 2000
Number Percent Number Percent Number Percent
Total Population 1,168,972 100.00% 1,203,789 100.00% 1,332,650 100.00%
Total Hispanics 396,353 33.91% 523,111 43.46% 644,705 48.38%
White* 396,836 33.95% 272,503 22.64% 193,651 14.53%
Black* 348,744 29.83% 369,113 30.66% 416,338 31.24%
American Indian and Eskimo* 2,409 0.21% 3,445 0.29% 3,488 0.26%
Asian* 15,163 1.30% 31,210 2.59% 38,558 2.89%
Hawaiian and Pacific Islander* - - - - 474 0.04%
Other* 9,467 0.81% 4,407 0.37% 8,227 0.62%
Two or More Races* - - - - 27,209 2.04%

* Non-Hispanic only; in 1980 and 1990 "Asians" includes Hawaiians and Pacific Islanders.

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

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