Birmingham, Alabama Population 2018

Birmingham is a city located in the state of Alabama. It is the most populous city in the state, with a population of 217,158 inhabitants according to estimates taken in 2017. The last census in 2010 recorded the city’s population as 212,237. The city’s metro area has a population of over 1.1 million and accounts for about one-quarter of the state’s total population. The city was founded in 1871 and was once one of the primary industrial centers of the United States’ southern region. Today, while its industries have changed, it remains one of the country’s most important business and banking centers in the US.

Birmingham History

Birmingham was founded in 1871 through the merger of three farm towns. In its earliest years, it became a center for railroad transportation and mining, iron and steel industries. It was primarily developed in order to use immigrants for cheap labor, whereas other cities at this time were unionized. In fact, the city was named after Birmingham, England, which at the time was a leading industrial city.

The city began growing at a rapid rate, although a cholera outbreak and the stock market crash – both which occurred in the 1800s – did slow growth temporarily. However, the early 1900s saw extensive growth and the city became known as “The Magic City.” The Great Depression brought about another set of challenges for Birmingham. As its own industries were struggling, farm laborers also flooded the city in hopes of finding employment. It was so bad that the president said that Birmingham was the “worst-hit town” in the US.

However, Birmingham bounced back fairly quickly as a demand for steel during World War II boosted the economy. It was during this time that the city’s manufacturing sector also grew, while schools, parks and museums were erected around the area. It wasn’t long before the city faced more controversy. During the 1950s and 1960s, racially-charged bombings occurred to the homes of black families, and Birmingham became known as “Bombingham.” Martin Luther King, Jr. came to the city to take part in a non-violent demonstration and was jailed in the city, where he wrote the “Letter from Birmingham Jail.”

In more recent years, the city has focused on urban-renewal efforts and has upgraded its city center, developed the University of Alabama at Birmingham, and has completed other improvements throughout the city. The downtown area is in the process of being reconstructed, bringing in new housing, retail, restaurant and cultural options to bring in new residents and visitors. It has also become a leading business and banking center in the US.

Birmingham Demographics

The city of Birmingham has an estimated population of over 217,000 inhabitants. The city stretches across over 148 square miles, and it has a population density of over 1,453 people per square mile. Breaking down the population from the 2010 census shows that almost three-quarters of Birmingham’s total population is Black or African America. Approximately 22% are White, 3.6% are Hispanic or Latino, 0.2% are Native American, 1% are mixed race, and 2.1% are another race.

Breaking down the population by age shows that one-quarter of the population is under the age of 18. The largest age group is the 25 to 44 demographic, which makes up 30% of the population. The median age is 34 years. The city has a higher proportion of female to male inhabitants, with 85.7 males to every 100 females. Over one-quarter of the population lives below the federal poverty line, with almost 42% of children under the age of 18 living in poverty. The city is not just ethnically diverse but also is very diverse when it comes to religion. It is the site of many Christian churches, as well as mosques, Hindu temples and synagogues. The city has the highest ratio of Protestant followers in the country based on 2010 data. The city also has a very high rate of crime and was ranked 20th in the country based on the highest crime rates. Violent crime has continued to rise over the last few years, particularly in low-income areas. The city is ranked the third most violent in the US.

Birmingham Population Growth

The city of Birmingham saw population growth through its earliest years, but since the 1970s has posted population losses in every 10-year census. Most recently, the population dropped by over 12% between 2000 and 2010. Estimates from 2017 show that some growth has occurred since the last census in 2010. The high crime rates have contributed to the falling population numbers. “White flight” has also occurred as people move from the city to the suburbs following the loss of jobs. Birmingham’s plans to revitalize the city could contribute to future population growth, and the current numbers showing that it’s on the upswing again could be a positive sign for this Alabama city.

Year Population Growth Annual Growth Rate
2017210,710-553-0.26%
2016211,263-358-0.17%
2015211,6216230.30%
2014210,998-96-0.05%
2013211,0944340.21%
2012210,660-856-0.40%
2011211,516-223-0.11%
2010211,739-31,081-1.36%
2000242,820-23,148-0.91%
1990265,968-18,445-0.67%
1980284,413-16,497-0.56%
1970300,910-39,977-1.24%
1960340,88714,8500.45%
1950326,03758,4542.00%
1940267,5837,9050.30%
1930259,67880,8723.80%
1920178,80646,1213.03%
1910132,68594,27013.20%
190038,41512,2373.91%
189026,17823,09223.84%
18803,0860.00%

Birmingham Population in 2018Source: By JimmyGuano [Public domain], from Wikimedia Commons

Population by Race

Race Population
Black or African American152,952
White51,530
Some Other Race2,924
Two or More Races2,771
Asian1,881
American Indian and Alaska Native341
Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander25

Race Data via US Census (2016 ACS 5-Year Survey)

Birmingham Population Pyramid 2018

0%2%4%6%8%10% Male Population0%2%4%6%8%10% Female Population80757065605550454035302520151050

Data via US Census (2016 ACS 5-Year Survey): Table S0101

Birmingham Median Age

35.7


Total

33.9


Male

37.3


Female

Birmingham Adults

There are 168,665 adults, (28,252 of which are seniors) in Birmingham.

Birmingham Age Dependency

51.4

Age Dependency Ratio

20.2

Old Age Dependency Ratio

31.2

Child Dependency Ratio

Birmingham Sex Ratio

Female

112,732

53.07%

Male

99,692

46.93%

Birmingham Households and Families

Birmingham Renter vs Owner Occupied by Household Type

Birmingham Household Types

Type Owner Renter
Married71.1%28.9%
Male51.7%48.3%
All46.4%53.6%
Non Family38.6%61.4%
Female35.6%64.4%

46.4%

Rate of Home Ownership

Birmingham Households by Type

Type Count Average Size Owned
All90,4792.2546.4
Non Family42,7551.2238.6
Married21,9683.0471.1
Female21,4713.3235.6
Male4,2853.1551.7

3.11

Average Family Size

2.25

Average Household Size

4%

Unmarried (Opposite Sex)

0.5%

Unmarried (Same Sex)

Birmingham Households

Birmingham Education

Birmingham Educational Attainment by Sex (over 25)

Education Attained Count Percentage
Less Than 9th Grade5,0693.53%
9th to 12th Grade15,56610.83%
High School Graduate41,10228.60%
Some College34,99724.35%
Associates Degree11,0987.72%
Bachelors Degree22,71715.80%
Graduate Degree13,1869.17%

Birmingham Educational Attainment by Race

Name Total High School Bachelors
Black100,02184,14215,291
White37,06933,88318,682
Hispanic4,2142,785691
Other Race1,7441,183214
Asian1,3341,2691,000
Multiple Races1,1341,028292
Native American26725273
Islander25257

The highest rate of high school graduation is among islander people with a rate of 100.00%.

The highest rate of bachelors degrees is among islander people with a rate of 74.96%.

Birmingham Earnings by Educational Attainment

Name Average Male Female
Overall$27,317$30,362$25,789
Less Than High School$16,105$18,331$13,581
High School Grad$21,705$24,822$18,842
Some College$25,714$27,959$23,901
Bachelors Degree$41,335$48,594$37,716
Graduate Degree$51,412$56,215$49,418

$27,317

Average Earnings

$30,362

Average Male

$25,789

Average Female

Birmingham Language

Birmingham Language by Age

Birmingham Language

94.93% of Birmingham residents speak only English, while 5.07% speak other languages. The largest non-English language is Spanish, which is spoken by 3.16% of the population.

Birmingham Poverty

Birmingham Poverty by Race

Name Total In Poverty Poverty Rate
Black150,11547,61631.72%
White44,5389,02220.26%
Hispanic6,9412,57137.04%
Other2,7301,14441.90%
Multiple2,6201,09241.68%
Asian1,70821812.76%
Native31711135.02%
Islander25832.00%

29.40%

Overall Poverty Rate

27.71%

Male Poverty Rate

30.90%

Female Poverty Rate

Poverty in Birmingham

The race most likely to be in poverty in Birmingham is Other, with 41.90% below the poverty level.

The race least likely to be in poverty in Birmingham is Asian, with 12.76% below the poverty level.

The poverty rate among those that worked full-time for the past 12 months was 5.98%. Among those working part-time, it was 33.32%, and for those that did not work, the poverty rate was 37.72%.

Birmingham Poverty Rate by Education

Name Poverty
Less Than High School41.28%
High School25.57%
Some College21.82%
Bachelors or Greater9.65%

Birmingham Poverty Rate by Employment Status and Sex

Name Poverty
Female Unemployed54.75%
Male Unemployed47.31%
Female Employed16.21%
Male Employed10.99%

Birmingham Income

Birmingham Income by Household Type

Name Median Mean
Households$32,404$46,346
Families$39,455$54,017
Married Families$62,336$77,355
Non Families$24,208$36,649

Birmingham Marital Status

Birmingham Marital Status

Marriage Rates

27.9%

Overall Marriage Rate

30.7%

Male Marriage Rate

25.6%

Female Marriage Rate

Birmingham Married by Age and Sex

Birmingham Marriage

The age group where males are most likely to be married is Over65, while the female age group most likely to be married is 55To64.

Birmingham Marital Status by Race

Birmingham Veterans

Birmingham Veterans by War

12,661

Number of Veterans

11,538

Male Veterans

1,123

Female Veterans

Name Veterans
Vietnam4,467
First Gulf War2,086
Second Gulf War1,678
Korea979
World War II695

Birmingham Veterans by Age

Name Veterans
55 to 643,564
35 to 543,214
65 to 742,516
75+2,444
18 to 34923

Birmingham Veterans by Race

Name Veterans % of Total
Black9,1647.87%
White3,3457.24%
2 or More664.01%
Hispanic541.05%
Indian5317.97%
Other331.57%

Birmingham Veterans by Education

15.39%

Veteran Poverty Rate

29.61%

Veteran Disability Rate

Birmingham Employment Status

Birmingham Employment by Age

59.8%

Labor Force Participation

52.7%

Employment Rate

11.8%

Unemployment Rate

Birmingham Employment by Race

Birmingham Employment by Education

Birmingham Place of Birth

Origin of Non Citizens

Non citizens include legal permanent residents (green card holders), international students, temporary workers, humanitarian migrants, and illegal immigrants.

Origin of Naturalized Citizens

79.26%

Born in Alabama

96.61%

Native Born

3.39%

Foreign Born

2.51%

Non Citizen

Place of Birth

96.61% of Birmingham residents were born in the United States, with 79.26% having been born in Alabama. 2.51% of residents are not US citizens. Of those not born in the United States, the largest percentage are from Latin America.