including 3,091,424 mixed race individuals
(13.6% of U.S. population)
2010 U.S. Census
|Regions with significant populations|
|Predominantly in the Southern United States and in urban areas across the country|
|Predominantly Protestant (78%)|
African Americans (also referred to as Black Americans or Afro-Americans or more unspecifically by using terms such as Blacks) are citizens or residents of the United States with Sub-Saharan African ancestry. African Americans have on average a very small degree of European ancestry.
Other words such Colored and Negro are today considered to be negative by the politically correct, despite this not always being the case. Negro remains the official category for blacks in United States Census Returns.
A ship with Africans arrived in British North America (and future United States of America) in 1619. The first Africans settled in Jamestown, Virginia and for many years were similar in legal position to poor English people who traded several years labor in exchange for passage to America. Africans could in some cases legally raise crops and cattle to purchase their freedom. By the 1640s and 1650s, some African families owned farms around Jamestown. The race-based slave system did not fully develop until the 1700's. By 1860, there were 3.5 million enslaved Africans in the Southern United States due to the Atlantic slave trade, and another 500,000 Africans lived free across the country. In 1863, during the American Civil War, President Abraham Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation. The proclamation declared all slaves in states that had seceded from the Union were free. Advancing Union troops enforced the proclamation with Texas being the last state to be emancipated in 1865. In late 1890s, Southern states enacted Jim Crow laws to enforce racial segregation and disenfranchisement. Most African Americans followed the Jim Crow laws and created their own schools, churches, banks, social clubs, and other businesses.
The civil rights movement, "affirmative action", White flight, Cultural Marxism, and the ending of immigration restrictions causing more Black immigrants are some relatively recent historical changes related to African Americans.
|Year||Number||% of total
|1930||11.9 million||9.7% (lowest)||13%|
- The Black Population: 2010 (PDF). Census.gov (September 2011). Retrieved on June 3, 2013.
- Pew Forum: A Religious Portrait of African-Americans. The Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life (January 30, 2009). Retrieved on October 31, 2012.
- This table gives the Black population in the United States over time, based on U.S. Census figures. (Numbers from years 1920 to 2000 are based on U.S. Census figures as given by the Time Almanac of 2005, p. 377.)