Iowa Population 2014

March, 14th 2014

Situated in the mid west of the United States and often referred to as the "heartland of America," Iowa is very much in the middle of the country, both in terms of location and population statistics.

To get any sense of confirmed numbers of residents in Iowa, you have to go back to the last nationwide census of 2010 when it was declared that 3,046,355 people lived here. That represented a modest rise of 4.1% on a figure of 2,926,324 which was confirmed at the end of the census in 2000. It's estimated by the Census Bureau that the current population of Iowa in 2013 is 3,088,197. Iowa currently has a growth rate of 0.46%, which ranks 35th.

Iowa Population 2013

Did you know?

Iowa has only 1 town on an island: Sabula, pop 568.

As far as the population of Iowa in 2013 is concerned, estimates are released every year but the most recent of these was made available in July, 2013. At the time, it was claimed that the figures had climbed to 3,088,197. While Iowa is the 26th most extensive in terms of land area, it is now the 30th most populous state in the United States.

Of the residents of Iowa,72.2% were born in the state, 23.2% were born in a different state in the US, 0.5% were born in Puerto Rico or abroad to American parents and 4.1% were foreign born. According to the official 2010 US Census, 91.3% of the population was White (88.7% non-Hispanic), 2.9% was Black or African American, 0.4% Alaska Native and American Indian, 1.7% Asian, 0.1% Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander and 1.8% from two or more races. Iowans are primarily of Western European descent, with the largest ancestry groups including German (35.7%), Irish (13.5%), English (9.5%), American (6.6%) and Norwegian (5.7%).

Interestingly, the 2012 population estimate was the first time the state ever topped 3 million in terms of population.

Iowa Population Density

Large areas of Iowa are flat and used as farmland and as such, the population density is relatively sparse. Overall, there is a surface area of 56,272 square miles (or 145,743 square kilometers) and this is the 26th largest state in the country in terms of pure land mass.


With regards to the exact density, average figures show that there are 54.8 people for every square mile. The population center is located in Marshall County in the city of Marshalltown. The most populous city in Iowa is Des Moines, with 207,000residents, followed by Cedar Rapids (128,000) and Davenport (101,000). Iowa now has a predominantly urban population concentrated in these areas, with 61% of the total population living in urban areas by 2000. From 2000 to 2008, urban counties grew 8.5%, while rural counties declined by 4.2%. This trend is expected to continue.

Iowa Population History

Records relating to the growth of Iowa’s population can be traced back to 1840 when the official US Census confirmed that there were 43,112 people living here. Like most states across the US however, those numbers had exploded ten years later and an impressive increase of 345.8% took them to 192,214.

Further significant rises occurred for the rest of the 19th century but by the time the 1900’s had rolled in, the growth had started to slow down a little.

In fact, between 1900 and 1910, there was a slight drop in population figures by less than one per cent. Not a huge amount but population decreases within the US are rare and Iowa went on to produce a similar set of figures in 1990 when the declared population of 2,776,755 had actually dropped by 4.7% from the numbers confirmed in 1980. Overall, those drops in figures make Iowa’s population in 2013 a little hard to predict.

Iowa Population Growth

After the state's economy bottomed out in the 1980's, it has slowly become more dependent on agriculture. There is still a good mix of finance and insurance services, government services, manufacturing and biotechnology, which has allowed the population of Iowa to increase faster than the United States as a whole.

New population estimates from the U.S. Census Bureau in 2013 also showed that seven metro counties in Iowa carried the population growth of Iowa from 2010 to 2012, with Dallas County near the top nationally. Combined, they ranked 14th in the nation in terms of fastest growing counties, growing 8.8%. This is in keeping with the urbanization trend in the state.

The overall picture is one of growth and as such, the numbers within Iowa should continue rising steadily and progress towards the 3.5 million figure by the time of the next Census in 2020.

Iowa Population Chart