continued

In the introduction to Historical Statistics of United States, Colonial Times to 1970, the authors state that "The classification of the population by race reflects common usage rather than an attempt to define biological stock. As a result, the white and Negro populations usually have not been divided into racial subgroups (although the white population has been classified by ethnic origin), but American Indians and some Asian groups (e.g. Japanese, Chinese, Korean, Filipino, etc.) have typically been identified with country of origin. Through 1960, the classification of the population by race was usually obtained by the enumerator’s observation. Persons of mixed white and other parentage were usually classified with the other race. The category Indian included unmixed American Indians together with persons who were of mixed white and Indian Ancestry if they were enrolled on an Indian reservation or agency roll."1

The graphs below demonstrate the federal government's quantitative perspective on race in the United States. It also shows demographic changes in the different regions of the United States over the 1850, 1860, and 1870 federal censuses. African Americans were consistently a much larger proportion of the total population in the South than in any other region. 

 

 

 

Hover over the bars to find out their exact numerical values.

 

Data Source: United States Department of Commerice, Bureau of the Census. Historical Statistics of the United States, Colonial Times to 1970. (Washington, D.C.: Bureau of Census, 1975), 19. Link. Rendered by Samantha de Vera. 

Below are additional maps that show how the United States was divided by region in the nineteenth century.


References

[1] United States Department of Commerice, Bureau of the Census. Historical Statistics of the United States, Colonial Times to 1970. (Washington, D.C.: Bureau of Census, 1975), 19.