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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 20,499 91.51% 18,632 86.98%
Spanish 1,593 7.11% 2,522 11.77%
Other Indo-European* 256 1.14% 159 0.74%
Asian Language** 35 0.16% 28 0.13%
Other 18 0.08% 81 0.38%
Total Population Age 5+ 22,401 100.00% 21,422 100.00%

Population Speaking English Less Than "Very Well" in 2000
Language Spoken at Home: Number Percent
Spanish 926 36.72%
Other Indo-European* 45 28.30%
Asian Language** 2 7.14%
Other Language 36 44.44%
Total 1,009 4.71%

Population Speaking English Less Than "Very Well" in 1990
Language Spoken at Home: Number Percent
Spanish 671 42.12%
Other Indo-European* 61 23.83%
Asian Language** 0 -
Other Language 0 -
Total 732 3.27%

* "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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