Missouri Population 2018


The landlocked state of Missouri is situated in the United States’ Midwest ,and according to figures from the 2010 Census, it was the 18th most populous state in the country at the time. The census revealed that the Missouri population in 2010 was 5,988,927, which represented an increase of 7% on the findings from the 2000 Census. The estimate for the population of Missouri in 2018 is 6.14 million. It's not known if the population will reach 6.1 million in the very near future, as Missouri has a current growth rate of just 0.28%, which ranks 41st in the country.

Missouri is relatively sparsely populated, but not remarkably so. Its total land mass measures 69,704 square miles and for every square mile of land, there is an average of 87.1 people. This makes Missouri the 28th most densely populated state in the country, despite being 18th in terms of population and 21st in terms of land area. Its estimated population in 2018 of 6.14 million is just a moderate increase from 2010, when it was confirmed at 5.98 million.

The four largest cities in the state are St. Louis (315,685), Kansas City (475,378), Springfield (166,810) and Columbia (119,108), while the capital itself is Jefferson City. Most of the state's counties have a population density between 1 and 100 people per square mile, although the large urban areas have a population density that reaches over 5,000 people per square mile. Missouri does have a higher rural population than most of the country, with approximately one-third of Missourians living in a rural area.

Missouri Population History

Missouri was acquired as part of the Louisiana Purchase of 1803 and became part of Louisiana Territory, established in 1805 and comprising the whole of the Louisiana Purchase north of present-day Louisiana. This was renamed Missouri Territory in 1812. The southern portion (present-day Arkansas and most of Oklahoma) became Arkansas Territory in 1819. Missouri was admitted as a State on August 10, 1821; the northwestern corner (the Platte Purchase) was added in 1837, bringing the State to essentially its current boundaries.

In 1810, census coverage of Louisiana Territory was limited to portions of present-day Missouri and Arkansas, mainly close to the Mississippi River. The 1810 census was reported by districts (renamed counties in 1812); Arkansas District was entirely within present-day Arkansas and is shown under that State; New Madrid District also was partly within present-day Arkansas. In 1820, census coverage of Missouri Territory did not extend beyond present-day Missouri. After statehood in 1821, Missouri Territory, distinct from the State, continued to exist until 1854, but was almost entirely Indian lands and had virtually no census coverage.

Missouri Population Chart

Missouri Population History

Back in 1810, it was revealed that 19,783 citizens lived in Missouri, but increasing migration throughout the 19th century helped to swell the numbers significantly. Just ten years later in 1820, the population of Missouri had climbed by 236.6% to 66,586, and a further increase of over 100% took those numbers to 140,455 in 1830.

Further significant increases throughout the 1800s meant that by the time the 20th century arrived, the Missouri population stood at 3,106,665. From this point, census by census increases began to slow down but the overall picture was one of sustained growth to the point where the population of Missouri in 2012 had climbed to over 6 million for the first time.

Missouri Population Growth

Natural growth figures released in 2007 showed that there had been an increase of 137,564 people since the 2000 census with 480,763 births, 343,199 deaths and a net migration increase of 88,088 in the seven year period.

The total population has been estimated to approach 6.8 million people by 2030, a 21% increase over the population in 2000. The population of senior citizens is expected to grow very quickly as well, and it's estimated that people over 65 will account for one-fifth of the state's population by 2030. Natural change is expected to add an average of 244,000 Missourians every decade.

The northern and southeastern areas of Missouri are expected to lose a great deal of their population in the coming decades, while the urban areas continue to grow. In many ways, statistics relating to the population of Missouri are fairly unremarkable but like much of the US, the overall picture is one of healthy and sustained growth. At the 2020 census, it will be interesting to see how far the numbers can stretch beyond 6 million toward the next milestone.

Population Data via US Census

Missouri Growth Rate

Missouri Population Rank

Year Pop % Change

Missouri Facts

Missouri Population in 2018Source: By aimee castenell (Flickr: missouri river) [CC BY-SA 2.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

  • The first permanent settlement in Missouri was St. Genevieve, which was established in 1735.
  • The state was named after a tribe of Sioux Indians that inhabited the state and were known as Missouris. The name translates to "wooden canoe people."
  • The most destructive tornade in US history, the Tri-State tornado of 1925, touched down in Missouri, destroying 90% of Annapolis and killing 695 people.
  • Adolphus Busch and Eberhard Anheuser were two of the earliest St. Louis immigrants. The Anheuser-Busch brewery is located in St. Louis today and is the larrgest beer-producer in the United States.
  • St. Louis is home to the St. Louis Arch, the tallest US monument that stands at 630 feet.
  • Missouri leads the nation in lead production.

Missouri Population Density by County

St. Louis County

  • Population998,216
  • Density1965.88 per sq km
  • Growth Since 2010-0.05%
  • State Rank1
  • % of State16.39%

Missouri Population Growth Rate by County

Data from the 2010 Census and 2015 Census Bureau estimates break down the population counts for the counties of Missouri, and this data shows that there have been areas with significant growth, as well as areas that have shown declines during the 5-year period. Boone County, located in the central region of the state, reflected the most growth at 7.21%. Other counties that showed growth of greater than 5% include St. Charles, Platte, Clay, Christian, and Taney.

As would be expected, some counties saw declining populations during the same time period between 2010 and 2015. The highest decline was reported to be in Holt County at 8.56%. Neighboring county Atchinson posted 6.02% decrease, while Sullivan and Knox Counties had population declines of greater than 5%.

Missouri Population Pyramid 2018

0k10k20k30k40k50kMissouri Male Population0k10k20k30k40k50kMissouri Female Population80757065605550454035302520151050

To compare Missouri to other states, click here.

Population by Race

Race Population
Black or African American702,946
Two or More Races150,100
Some Other Race71,031
American Indian and Alaska Native30,888
Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander9,193

The largest ancestry groups) in Missouri are: German (27.4%), Irish (14.8%), English (10.2%), American (8.5%) and French (3.7%). A large percentage of Missourians are of German ancestry and present throughout the state. African Americans are also a large part of the population of Missouri's largest urban area, St. Louis, accounting for 56.6% of the state's total African American population.

Missouri also has a population of Missouri Creoles of French ancestry around the Mississippi River Valley, and Kansas City is home to a large and growing community of Latin American immigrants, as well as immigrants from Africa, Eastern Europe and Southeast Asia. There is also a large population of Cherokee Indians in Missouri. Missouri has a rapidly rising population of Hispanics.

Race Data via US Census (2016 ACS 1-Year Survey)

Languages Spoken in Missouri

Language Population Percentage
Pennsylvania Dutch4,0850.07%
Kru, Ibo, Yoruba3,0500.05%

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

Missouri Economy

High school graduate or higher 88%
Bachelor's degree or higher 26.7%
With a Disability 10.2%
Persons Without Health Insurance 13.7%
In Civilian Labor Force 63.5%
In Civilian Labor Force (Female) 59.6%
Food Services Sales $12,430,310
Health Care Revenue $40,089,316,000
Manufacturers Shipments $111,535,362,000
Merchant Wholesaler Sales $91,916,351,000
Total Retail Sales $90,546,581,000
Total Retail Sales per Capita $15,036
Mean Travel Time to Work 23.1 minutes
Median Household Income $47,764
Per Capita Income (past 12 months) $26,006
Persons in Poverty 15.5%

This chart shows the employment and labor force participation rates in Missouri for residents over 16 years of age. The 2015 unemployment rate is 4.7% and the labor force participation rate is 63.6%.

Missouri Business

Total Nonemployer Establishments 397,713
All firms 491,606
Men-owned Firms 257,948
Women-owned Firms 162,616
Minority-owned Firms 61,035
Nonminority-owned Firms 415,972
Veternan-owned Firms 49,217
Nonveteran-owned Firms 415,542

Missouri Housing

Housing Units 2,712,729
Owner Occupied Housing Rate 67.9%
Median Value Owner Occupied Housing Units $136,700
Median Monthly Owner Costs (w/Mortgage) $1,225
Median Monthly Owner Costs (no mortgage) $398
Median Gross Rent $740
Building Permits 18,344
Households 2,361,232
Persons per Household 2.48 persons
Living in Same House 1 Year Ago 83.9%
Language Other than English Spoken at Home 6.1%
Data Sources
  1. Missouri Census Data Center
  2. US Census State Population Estimates - Most recent state estimates from the Census Bureau's Population Estimates Program
  3. US Census County Population Estimates - Most recent county estimates from the Census Bureau's Population Estimates Program
  4. American Community Survey (2009 - 2013)
  5. Census QuickFacts
  6. Historical Populations of States and Counties (1790 - 1990)