Oregon Population 2017


The northwestern state of Oregon is the 9th largest in the US in terms of land area, but it has a sparsely spread population by comparison. Geography plays a huge part -- mountain ranges and vast forest areas are just two of the geographical features that have an impact on population density in Oregon. Despite its large area, the state has an estimated 2016 population of 4,028,977.

It's estimated that Oregon's population has reached 4,028,977 in 2016, up from 3.83 million at the 2010 Census. Oregon currently has a growth rate of 0.89%, which ranks 22nd in the country.

To establish the Oregon population in 2016, it's important to first look at the numbers from the last official US Census which was carried out in 2010. At that stage, it was confirmed that the Beaver State was home to 3,831,074 residents. That’s a sizeable 12% rise on the numbers declared ten years earlier.

Oregon's 2013 population is estimated to have grown to over 4 million, making Oregon the 27th most populous state in the country.

Oregon is the 9th largest state in America with a total surface area of 98,380.64 square miles (or 255,026 square kilometers). However, parts of this vast landscape are dominated by geographical features that are unsuitable for major settlement and as a result, there is an average of just 39.9 people living in every square mile of Oregon territory. This makes Oregon only the 39th most densely populated state in the country.

Much of Oregon's population is concentrated in the Willamette Valley from Eugene to the south through Corvallis, Salem and Portland, the largest city. Portland is home to 630,309. Other major cities include Eugene (163,460), Salem (164,549), Gresham (110,553) and Hillsboro (102,347).

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Oregon Population Chart

Oregon Population History

Early recorded figures show that in 1850, Oregon had a reasonably healthy population of 12,093. Those numbers were to increase by over 300% over the next ten years, and in 1860 the Oregon population was recorded at 52,465.

That was the largest rise on a decade by decade basis but the overall trend for the rest of the century was one of sustained growth, and by 1900, the population of Oregon was confirmed at 413,536.

Unlike other parts of the United States, that growth did not slow down for the first half of the 20th century, and by 1950, numbers had increased to 1,521,341. Further healthy growth has seen the population more than double over the past sixty years, and have taken the state to the present day where the population in 2016 has surpassed 4 million.

Oregon Population Projections

There is nothing to presently suggest that population growth in Oregon is set to slow down in the near future. By the time of the 2020 Census, it's estimated that the population will exceed 4.3 million. By 2030, estimates show the population will reach 4.8 million, an increase of over 41% from the 2000 population, while Oregon will reach 5.42 million residents by 2040.

Population Data via US Census

Oregon Growth Rate

Oregon State Rank

Year Pop % Change
2020 4,317,852 1.36%
2019 4,260,077 1.37%
2018 4,202,302 1.39%
2017 4,144,527 1.41%
2016 4,086,752 1.43%
2015 4,028,977 1.45%
2014 3,971,202 1.10%
2013 3,928,030 0.73%
2012 3,899,444 0.80%
2011 3,868,509 0.98%
2010 3,831,074 1.14%
2000 3,421,399 1.87%
1990 2,842,321 0.77%
1980 2,633,105 2.33%
1970 2,091,385 1.69%
1960 1,768,687 1.52%
1950 1,521,341 3.39%
1940 1,089,684 1.34%
1930 953,786 1.99%
1920 783,389 1.53%
1910 672,765 4.99%
1900 413,536 2.67%
1890 317,704 6.16%
1880 174,768 6.75%
1870 90,923 5.65%
1860 52,465 15.81%
1850 12,093 0.00%

Oregon Facts

Oregon Population in 2017 Source: Cacophony

  • The number of ghost towns located in Oregon surpasses every other US state.
  • The first permanent settlement was established by Methodist Missionaries at Wilamette Valley in 1834.
  • Thousands of pioneers used the Oregon Trail to migrate west. The Oregon Trail was the longest of the trails used during the westward expansion, crossing over 2,000 miles.
  • Oregon is home to Crater Lake, the deepest lake in the US that reaches depths of over 1,900 feet.
  • Hells Canyon in Oregon is the deepest river gorge (8,000 feet) in the country.
  • One-way streets first appeared in Eugene, Oregon.
  • There is so sales, liquor or restaurant taxes in the state of Oregon.

Oregon Population Density by County

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

Oregon Population Growth Rate by County

There are a total of 36 counties in the state of Oregon, and interesting growth patterns have been observed when comparing data from 2010's Census to estimates taken in 2015 by the Census Bureau. Comparisons of this data show that the western counties of the state experienced growth in their populations during the 5-year period. Deschutes County experienced the most growth at 11.04%, followed by Washington County at 8.03%. Other western counties that saw growth include Jackson County at 4.5%, Polk County at 5.05%, and Clackamas County at 6.53%, just to name a few. There were also two counties located in the northeastern corner of the state that experienced some amount of population growth. Those counties were Umatilla and Union.

On the other side of both the growth chart and the state were the populations that declined during the same time period. These counties were located in the eastern portion of the state. Wheeler County had the highest loss in population at 6.15%, followed by Sherman County along the northern border at 5.14%. Other losses were recorded in Malheur, Harney, and Grant Counties, among others.

Population Pyramid

To compare Oregon to other states, click here.

Population by Race

Race Population Percentage

Oregon has one of the lowest population percentages of African Americans in the nation, ranking 41st out of 50 states. The majority of the population (as well as the majority of the state's diversity) is located around the Portland metro area. The state's foreign-born population exceeds 300,000 and accounts for almost 9% of the total population, according to data from 2004.

Oregon's Native American population, in terms of percentage when compared to the state's total population, is ranked as 10th in the nation and tops the national average. Oregon ranks 12th in its percentage of Asian Americans when compared to the total population, and this percentage falls just short of the average of the US as a whole.

The largest ancestry groups in Oregon include: German (22.5%), English (14.0%), Irish (13.2%), Scandinavian (8.4%), American (5.0%), French (3.9%), Italian (3.7%) and Scottish (3.6%). Portland is Oregon's most diverse area, while there are high concentrations of Mexican-Americans in Jefferson and Malheur counties.

Languages Spoken in Oregon

Language Population Percentage
Population 5 years and over 3,635,006 100
English 3,207,461 88.24
Spanish 319,160 8.78
Chinese 18,555 0.51
German 15,170 0.42
French 11,275 0.31
Ukrainian 5,955 0.16
Romanian 5,665 0.16
Mandarin 3,855 0.11
Cantonese 3,425 0.09

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

Oregon Economy

HighSchoolGraduate 90
BachelorsDegree 30
Disabled 10
NoHealthInsurance 12
LaborForceTotal 62
LaborForceFemale 58
FoodServiceSales 8,466,788
HealthCareRevenue 24,956,816
ManufacturerShipments 51,349,948
MerchantWholesalesSales 48,325,261
RetailSales 49,481,054
RetailSalesPerCapita 12,690
MeanWorkTravelTime 23
MedianHouseholdIncome 50,521
PerCapitaIncome 27,173
PovertyPercentage 17

This chart shows the employment and labor force participation rates in Oregon for residents over 16 years of age. The 2015 unemployment rate is 5.8% and the labor force participation rate is 62.2%.

Oregon Business

NonemployerEstablishments 269,901
AllFirms 339,305
MenOwnedFirms 165,691
WomenOwnedFirms 123,015
MinorityOwnedFirms 41,456
NonminorityOwnedFirms 285,028
VeteranOwnedFirms 30,918
NonveteranOwn 288,790

Oregon Housing

HousingUnits 1,718,409
HousingUnits 1,675,562
OwnerOccupiedRate 62
OwnerOccupiedMedianValue 234,100
MonthlyOwnerCostsMortage 1,591
MonthlyOwnerCostsNoMortage 464
MedianGrossRent 894
BuildingPermits 17,510
Households 1,522,988
PersonsPerHousehold 3
SameHouseOneYearAgo 82
NonEnglishAtHome 15
Data Sources
  1. Census State Population Estimates - Most recent state estimates from the Census Bureau's Population Estimates Program - released 6/23/2016
  2. Census County Population Estimates - Most recent county estimates from the Census Bureau's Population Estimates Program - released 6/23/2016
  3. American Community Survey (2009 - 2013)
  4. Census QuickFacts