Maine Population 2016

1,328,400

At the very northeastern tip of the United States is the state of Maine: a land known for its mountainous terrain and rocky coastline on which there is perhaps the one thing that Maine is famous for outside of its own country -- the Maine Lobster. Maine is also the 41st most populated state in the US, with an estimated population of 1.3 million in 2016.

The varying landscape results in a very sparsely populated territory but in terms of pure numbers, the 2010 Census revealed that there were 1,328,361 people living in Maine. A further estimate in 2011 suggested that those numbers had decreased slightly to 1,328,188, making Maine the 41st most populous state in the country.

As a result of that fluctuation, the population of Maine in 2016 is a little hard to pinpoint, but current estimates show there are now 1,329,328 people living in the state, a slight rise from the last Census. Maine currently has one of the slowest population growth rates in the country of only 0.03%, which ranks 48th out of 50.

Maine Population Density

Maine has a current population density of just 43.1 people per square mile, which makes it the least densely populated state in New England, the American northeast and the eastern seaboard, as well as all states with an Atlantic coastline and those states east of the Mississippi River.

The Greater Portland metropolitan area is the most densely populated in the state and claims 40% of Maine's total population. Much of Maine is comprised of uninhabited lands in remote parts of its interior.

Maine Population Chart

Maine Population History

Its location at the edge of the new world means that the earliest recorded population figures were healthier and more stable than they may have been in other parts of the country.

The first set of available figures date back to 1790 and at the time, the population of Maine was recorded at a healthy 96,540. The following two censuses resulted in population increases of over 50%, and by 1810, it was shown that 228,705 people resided in the state.

From this point, the changes in population fluctuated somewhat but the overall picture was one of healthy growth. By the time the 20th century rolled in, Maine’s population had grown to a figure of 694,466. Further rises followed and in the present day, the population of Maine in 2016 has edged past 1.3 million.

Maine Population Projections

Occasional decreases in the overall numbers within the state, as well as one of the slowest population growth rates in the US, mean that it is relatively difficult to judge the exact population of Maine in the future. In terms of population and growth, this is one of the least remarkable states in the union, and while the overall picture is one of growth, only the 2020 census will give a more accurate picture.

It is projected that Maine's population will peak in 2020 at 1.332 million people, and then fall beyond that to 1.326 million. It's also estimated that the age composition in the state will change dramatically, as 26% of the population currently consists of people under 19. By 2030, it's estimated that this group will make up just 21% of the population. Meanwhile, the population over 65 continues to grow.

Population Data via US Census

Maine Growth Rate

Maine State Rank

Year Pop % Change
2020 1,324,688 -0.07%
2019 1,325,616 -0.07%
2018 1,326,544 -0.07%
2017 1,327,472 -0.07%
2016 1,328,400 -0.07%
2015 1,329,328 -0.07%
2014 1,330,256 0.11%
2013 1,328,778 -0.01%
2012 1,328,888 0.05%
2011 1,328,257 -0.01%
2010 1,328,361 0.41%
2000 1,274,923 0.38%
1990 1,227,928 0.88%
1980 1,124,660 1.26%
1970 992,048 0.23%
1960 969,265 0.59%
1950 913,774 0.76%
1940 847,226 0.61%
1930 797,423 0.38%
1920 768,014 0.34%
1910 742,371 0.67%
1900 694,466 0.49%
1890 661,086 0.19%
1880 648,936 0.35%
1870 626,915 -0.02%
1860 628,279 0.75%
1850 583,169 1.51%
1840 501,793 2.31%
1830 399,455 2.96%
1820 298,335 2.69%
1810 228,705 4.19%
1800 151,719 4.62%
1790 96,540 0.00%

Maine Facts

Maine Population in 2016 Source: Jeffrey B. Ferland

  • The earliest inhabitants of Maine were descendents of hunters from the Ice Age.
  • It is believed that the land that is now Maine was discovered by Vikings approximately 1,000 years ago.
  • Over nine-tenths of the land of Maine is covered with forests -- making the state the most forested in the country.
  • About 40 million pounds of lobster are caught off the coast of Maine each year. This is about 90% of the country's lobster supply.
  • The state has over 5,000 miles of coastline.
  • York was the first city incorporated in the US back in 1642.

Maine Population Density by County

  • Population
  • Density
  • Growth Since 2010
  • State Rank
  • % of State

Maine Population Growth Rate by County

When looking at the population trends among counties in Maine, data shows that the majority of counties have experienced population declines since 2010, with the exception of some of the state's southernmost counties, which reported minor growth. In total, just five counties in Maine experienced population growth between the time of the US Census in 2010 and estimates taken by the Census Bureau in 2015. Of these five counties, Cumberland had the highest growth rate of 3.03%. Trailing behind are York County at 2.01%, Waldo County at 0.87%, Hancock County at 0.53% and Knox County at 0.35%.

On the other end of the spectrum, there were multiple counties that showed declining populations, particularly in the northermost counties. Aroostock County posted the biggest loss of 4.31%. Its neighbor, Washinton County, saw a decrease of 3.65% and Piscataquis saw a decrease in population of 3.51%. Other counties moving south also saw smaller losses, including Somerset, Oxford, and Lincoln.

Population Pyramid

To compare Maine to other states, click here.

Population by Race

Race Population Percentage
White 1,269,764 95.59%
Black or African American 16,269 1.22%
American Indian and Alaska Native 8,771 0.66%
Asian 13,783 1.04%
Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander 377 0.03%
Two or more races 19,397 1.46%

Outside of Quebec, Maine has the highest number of French speakers in North America. In fact, nearly 24% of the state’s native residents put their ancestry down as French Canadian or French. Maine also has the highest percentage of non-Hispanic Whites of any state in the country, with 89% of all births in Maine to two non-Hispanic white parents. Maine's population of non-Hispanic whites is estimated to be over 96%. Only two other states have white populations this high. Just 10 states in total, including Maine, have non-Hispanic white populations that exceed 90%.

The most common ancestries in the state are:

  • 23.9% French or French-Canadian
  • 21.6% English
  • 17.8% Irish
  • 9.4% American
  • 8.5% German
  • 5.8% Italian

It's believed that most people who cite American as their ancestry are of primarily English descent, although they may have ancestry that has been in the area for so long, sometimes since the 1600s, that they choose to identify as just American.

Languages Spoken in Maine

Language Population Percentage
Population 5 years and over 1,261,144 100.00%
English 1,189,544 94.32%
French 45,350 3.60%
Spanish 11,600 0.92%
German 3,415 0.27%
Cushite 2,055 0.16%
Chinese 1,955 0.16%
Passamaquoddy 785 0.06%
Portuguese 675 0.05%
Dutch 435 0.03%

This chart shows the top 10 non-English languages that are spoken at home in Maine. The data comes from the most recent release of the American Community Survey (ACS).

Maine Economy

High school graduate or higher, percent of persons age 25 years+, 2010-2014 91
Bachelor's degree or higher, percent of persons age 25 years+, 2010-2014 28
With a disability, under age 65 years, percent, 2010-2014 12
Persons without health insurance, under age 65 years, percent 12
In civilian labor force, total, percent of population age 16 years+, 2010-2014 64
In civilian labor force, female, percent of population age 16 years+, 2010-2014 60
Total accommodation and food services sales, 2012 ($1,000) (c) 2,901,347
Total health care and social assistance receipts/revenue, 2012 ($1,000) (c) 10,297,043
Total manufacturers shipments, 2012 ($1,000) (c) 16,044,543
Total merchant wholesaler sales, 2012 ($1,000) (c) 12,961,262
Total retail sales, 2012 ($1,000) (c) 21,521,714
Total retail sales per capita, 2012 (c) 16,192
Mean travel time to work (minutes), workers age 16 years+, 2010-2014 24
Median household income (in 2014 dollars), 2010-2014 48,804
Per capita income in past 12 months (in 2014 dollars), 2010-2014 27,332
Persons in poverty, percent 14

Maine Business

Total employer establishments, 2014 40,369
Total employment, 2014 492,690
Total annual payroll, 2014 19,631,807
Total employment, percent change, 2013-2014 1
Total nonemployer establishments, 2014 111,777
All firms, 2012 139,570
Men-owned firms, 2012 79,243
Women-owned firms, 2012 42,067
Minority-owned firms, 2012 4,339
Nonminority-owned firms, 2012 131,322
Veteran-owned firms, 2012 15,689
Nonveteran-owned firms, 2012 115,839

Maine Housing

Total employer establishments, 2014 40,369
Total employment, 2014 492,690
Total annual payroll, 2014 19,631,807
Total employment, percent change, 2013-2014 1
Total nonemployer establishments, 2014 111,777
All firms, 2012 139,570
Men-owned firms, 2012 79,243
Women-owned firms, 2012 42,067
Minority-owned firms, 2012 4,339
Nonminority-owned firms, 2012 131,322
Veteran-owned firms, 2012 15,689
Nonveteran-owned firms, 2012 115,839