Discussions of race and ethnic identity are often limited to big, broad groups: Black, White, Latino, Asian, American Indian. Now, data compiled by the APM Research Lab allows us to get past those labels and get to know a bit more about our fellow Georgians.
The new Roots Beyond Race project provides data on 198 distinct heritage groups based on self-reported U.S. Census Bureau data, and includes easy state-by-state comparisons.
“By weaving the data together from the wide variety of ways that people can express their ethnic heritage on Census questionnaires, this project is the most comprehensive look at the ethnic identity of Americans available,” said the project’s chief architect, Andi Egbert. “It teaches us so much about our neighbors and our country—especially the way immigration patterns have shaped our state populations so differently.”
So what does this new data say about Georgia?
The top five heritage groups claimed by the 10.4 million people who live in Georgia are:
African American heritage (26% of all residents; here defined as those of any race who listed the any of the following responses for their first or second ancestries: African American, African, or Afro-American, as well as anyone who identified as Black and listed “American” for their first or second ancestries. Note that the Census Bureau’s racial category “Black” is broader, and includes nearly 3.5 million Georgians.)
And how do we compare with the rest of the nation?
Compared to all states, Georgia has the 2nd largest number of residents with African American heritage, trailing only Texas.
Georgia has the nation’s 4th largest Nigerian population (28,000).
Georgia has the 5th highest number of residents claiming Guatemalan roots (76,000).
Georgia has the 10th highest number of residents claiming Scottish heritage.
Like 21 other states Asian Indian is the single largest heritage group within Georgia’s Asian population.
NOTE: The researchers constructed a heritage group for African American that included any responses of African American, African or Afro-American and American for their first or second ancestries. It also includes anyone who identified as Black (alone or in combination with other races) and also listed American for their first or second ancestries.