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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 52,305 95.68% 147,338 92.80%
Spanish 941 1.72% 4,056 2.55%
Other Indo-European* 1,049 1.92% 4,272 2.69%
Asian Language** 272 0.50% 2,653 1.67%
Other 102 0.19% 454 0.29%
Total Population Age 5+ 54,669 100.00% 158,773 100.00%

Population Speaking English Less Than "Very Well" in 2000
Language Spoken at Home: Number Percent
Spanish 1,059 26.11%
Other Indo-European* 832 19.48%
Asian Language** 1,183 44.59%
Other Language 148 32.60%
Total 3,222 2.03%

Population Speaking English Less Than "Very Well" in 1990
Language Spoken at Home: Number Percent
Spanish 149 15.83%
Other Indo-European* 235 22.40%
Asian Language** 142 52.21%
Other Language 14 13.73%
Total 540 0.99%

* "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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