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Charleston 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 258,812 95.32% 271,353 93.59%
Spanish 5,212 1.92% 9,112 3.14%
Other Indo-European* 5,567 2.05% 6,611 2.28%
Asian Language** 1,419 0.52% 2,307 0.80%
Other 511 0.19% 543 0.19%
Total Population Age 5+ 271,521 100.00% 289,926 100.00%

Population Speaking English Less Than "Very Well" in 2000
Language Spoken at Home: Number Percent
Spanish 4,097 44.96%
Other Indo-European* 1,510 22.84%
Asian Language** 1,144 49.59%
Other Language 82 15.10%
Total 6,833 2.36%

Population Speaking English Less Than "Very Well" in 1990
Language Spoken at Home: Number Percent
Spanish 1,880 36.07%
Other Indo-European* 1,534 27.56%
Asian Language** 621 43.76%
Other Language 132 25.83%
Total 4,167 1.53%

* "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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