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Rutherford 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 106,115 96.77% 158,413 94.12%
Spanish 943 0.86% 4,765 2.83%
Other Indo-European* 1,291 1.18% 2,060 1.22%
Asian Language** 1,199 1.09% 2,681 1.59%
Other 107 0.10% 392 0.23%
Total Population Age 5+ 109,655 100.00% 168,311 100.00%

Population Speaking English Less Than "Very Well" in 2000
Language Spoken at Home: Number Percent
Spanish 2,448 51.37%
Other Indo-European* 413 20.05%
Asian Language** 1,395 52.03%
Other Language 159 40.56%
Total 4,415 2.62%

Population Speaking English Less Than "Very Well" in 1990
Language Spoken at Home: Number Percent
Spanish 356 37.75%
Other Indo-European* 421 32.61%
Asian Language** 592 49.37%
Other Language 14 13.08%
Total 1,383 1.26%

* "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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