South Carolina Population 2018
Situated on the southeastern tip of the United States, South Carolina is one of the smallest states in the country but has a high population density by comparison. It's estimated that South Carolina's population reached 5.09 million in 2018, up from 4.62 million at the 2010 Census. South Carolina currently enjoys a growth rate of 1.06%, which ranks 18th in the country.
The last set of confirmed population figures in the United States came with the nationwide Census carried out in 2010. At the time, it was confirmed that there were 4,625,364 people living in the state -- a rise of just over 15% on the figures declared in 2000. The Census Bureau estimates there are 5.09 million residents of South Carolina in 2018, making it the 24th most populous state in the entire country.
Like many states on the eastern edge of the country, South Carolina is densely populated in comparison to its relatively small size. The state has an overall surface area of 32,020 square miles (82,931 square kilometers) which makes it just the 40th largest in the US.
For every square mile of South Carolina territory, however, there is an average of 153.9 people. That figure makes the state the 19th most densely populated in the country.
The two largest cities in South Carolina are Columbia (pop 133,803) and Charleston (pop 132,609), followed by North Charleston (pop 108,304). These are the only cities in the state with a population over 100,000.
Interestingly, South Carolina's metropolitan statistical areas are much larger than they appear based on the central city populations. Because of South Carolina law regarding unincorporated areas around city limits, most city proper populations seem smaller than the actual size of the area.
For example, Columbia, Greenville and Charleston each have urbanized area populations between 400,000 and 550,000, with the metropolitan statistical area (MSA) populations exceeding 60,000. The Greenville-Spartanburg-Anderson area is by far the largest, accounting for 1.4 million of South Carolina's population.
South Carolina Population History
South Carolina was one of the 13 original States. By the time of the 1790 census it had essentially its current boundaries, with some later adjustments following improved surveys. The census has covered all of the State ever since 1790, except for a narrow strip of Indian lands on the northwestern border, first enumerated in 1820. The 1790 census was not completed in South Carolina until early 1792.