Columbia, South Carolina Population 2018

Columbia is a city located in the state of South Carolina. It is the county seat for Richland County and is also the state capital. Part of the city is also located in Lexington County. The city has an estimated population of 134,309 people, and it is the second most populous city in South Carolina.

Columbia History

The Congaree people were the first known inhabitants of what is now Columbia. In 1540, Hernando de Soto was the first European to come to Columbia. However, the city was not settled until many years later, when the South Carolina General Assembly created the city in 1786. The area was selected as the state’s capital, although some legislators originally wanted to call the city Washington. Columbia was one of the first planned cities in the nation.

The State Legislature first met in Columbia at the end of the 18th century. At the beginning of the 19th century, Columbia was incorporated as a village before achieving city status in 1854.

When first designed, Columbia was divided into 400 blocks across a 2-mile square. Each block was further divided into half-acre plots and sold. There were rules put in place for the houses that were to be built on these plots of land. During the beginning of the 19th century, the city began to grow, with its population closing in on 1,000 residents.

It was also during the beginning of the 19th century that the University of South Carolina was founded. It was founded in order to provide Upcountry and Lowcountry South Carolinians with educational opportunities without having to leave the country.

It was around 1816 when the population grew to over 1,000 and there were about 250 homes in the town. As the 19th century progressed, Columbia received its city charter, a police force, and a railroad, which contributed to further population growth. Around the mid-1850s, the city’s economy revolved around the cotton industry and because of that, thousands of slaves lived in Columbia.

During the Civil War, much of the city was destroyed by fire. In 1865, the city began to rebuild and experienced a construction boom. The city continued to grow. During the 20th century, Columbia was taking on a role as a hub for textile manufacturing. There were six mills that employed thousands of workers in the area. In the early 20th century, paved roads were constructed for the first time on Main Street and there was another construction boom that included the development of a bank, hotels, and a shopping center. This trend only continued through the 1930s when the city had over 800 retail establishments. It was also during the early 1900s when Camp Jackson was established, which later became Fort Jackson.

During the second half of the 20th century, the city took on historic preservation projects to restore and renovate historic buildings which still stand today. Revitalization continued through the 1990s and 2000s, particularly in the downtown area. New additions include shopping centers, a children’s museum, an arena, art galleries, shops, restaurants and more. The city today has a very diverse economy based on government, healthcare, and finance. Columbia is also home to major companies including Michelin, SCANA, Honeywell and Westinghouse Electric.

Columbia Demographics

The city of Columbia has an estimated population of over 134,000 people. The city stretches across nearly 135 square miles, and it has a population density of over 977 people per square mile.

Whites make up the majority of the population, accounting for over 51% of the total population. Over 42% of the population is black, 2.2% is Asian, 1.5% are of other races, and 2% are mixed, while people of Hispanic or Latino origin make up 4.3% of the population. The largest age group is the 25 to 44 group, which makes up over 30% of the population. Over 20% of residents are under age 18, while 10.3% are at least 65 years old. There are more female residents than males, with 93.4 men for every 100 women. About 22.1% of the population lives below the federal poverty line. There are many religions observed throughout Columbia, with residents that are Baptist, Methodist, Lutheran, Catholic, and Jewish, just to name a few.

Columbia’s top employers including Blue Cross Blue Shield, the University of South Carolina and the Palmetto Health hospital system.

Columbia Population Growth

Census data show that for the most part, Columbia’s population has only grown throughout the years. In 1880, the population had exceeded 10,000. This number more than doubled by 1900. In 1930, the city passed the 50,000 mark, and in 1970, Columbia had over 100,000 residents. However, the 1980s and 1990s saw drops in population, falling below 100,000. However, at the time of the 2000 census, the population had bounced back again. Current estimates show that the population has risen almost 4% since the last census taken in 2010, indicating that this city will see continued growth.

Year Population Growth Annual Growth Rate
2017133,114-400-0.30%
2016133,5145400.41%
2015132,9741,7661.35%
2014131,2082480.19%
2013130,960-219-0.17%
2012131,1794430.34%
2011130,7365520.42%
2010130,18413,9061.14%
2000116,27818,2261.72%
199098,052-3,177-0.32%
1980101,229-12,313-1.14%
1970113,54216,1091.54%
196097,43310,5191.15%
195086,91424,5183.37%
194062,39610,8151.92%
193051,58114,0573.23%
192037,52411,2053.61%
191026,3195,2112.23%
190021,1085,7553.23%
189015,3535,3174.34%
188010,0367380.77%
18709,2981,2461.45%
18608,0521,9922.88%
18506,0601,7203.39%
18404,3401,0302.75%
18303,3100.00%

Columbia Population in 2018Source: By Akhenaton06 [CC BY-SA 3.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0) or GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html)], from Wikimedia Commons

Population by Race

Race Population
White68,725
Black or African American54,536
Two or More Races3,505
Asian3,321
Some Other Race2,030
Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander319
American Indian and Alaska Native101

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

Columbia Population Pyramid 2018

0%5%10%15%20% Male Population0%5%10%15%20% Female Population80757065605550454035302520151050

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

Columbia Median Age

28.2


Total

26.8


Male

29.5


Female

Columbia Adults

There are 110,271 adults, (12,724 of which are seniors) in Columbia.

Columbia Age Dependency

35.9

Age Dependency Ratio

13

Old Age Dependency Ratio

22.9

Child Dependency Ratio

Columbia Sex Ratio

Female

63,930

48.24%

Male

68,607

51.76%

Columbia Households and Families

Columbia Renter vs Owner Occupied by Household Type

Columbia Household Types

Type Owner Renter
Married70.6%29.4%
Male47.8%52.2%
All45.2%54.8%
Non Family34.4%65.6%
Female31.5%68.5%

45.2%

Rate of Home Ownership

Columbia Households by Type

Type Count Average Size Owned
All45,2552.2845.2
Non Family22,8421.4134.4
Married13,4623.0770.6
Female7,2623.431.5
Male1,6893.0847.8

3.1

Average Family Size

2.28

Average Household Size

5.3%

Unmarried (Opposite Sex)

0.7%

Unmarried (Same Sex)

Columbia Households

Columbia Education

Columbia Educational Attainment by Sex (over 25)

Education Attained Count Percentage
Less Than 9th Grade2,6223.51%
9th to 12th Grade6,6508.90%
High School Graduate15,01320.09%
Some College14,10318.88%
Associates Degree5,2287.00%
Bachelors Degree17,45523.36%
Graduate Degree13,64618.26%

Columbia Educational Attainment by Race

Name Total High School Bachelors
White36,57334,80122,364
Black31,89425,7466,072
Hispanic3,3232,289922
Asian1,6021,4661,250
Multiple Races1,2881,096460
Other Race1,101535135
Islander1361364
Native American535325

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

The highest rate of bachelors degrees is among native american people with a rate of 78.03%.

Columbia Earnings by Educational Attainment

Name Average Male Female
Overall$32,352$36,610$30,460
Less Than High School$15,685$16,801$12,785
High School Grad$20,894$24,144$17,179
Some College$28,721$31,408$26,022
Bachelors Degree$41,015$48,792$35,197
Graduate Degree$52,862$62,108$48,456

$32,352

Average Earnings

$36,610

Average Male

$30,460

Average Female

Columbia Language

Columbia Language by Age

Columbia Language

91.95% of Columbia residents speak only English, while 8.05% speak other languages. The largest non-English language is Spanish, which is spoken by 4.20% of the population.

Columbia Poverty

Columbia Poverty by Race

Name Total In Poverty Poverty Rate
Black44,90314,38932.04%
White49,8897,24414.52%
Hispanic4,8081,22725.52%
Asian2,50364625.81%
Other1,75854631.06%
Multiple1,86331616.96%
Native674668.66%
Islander25441.57%

22.92%

Overall Poverty Rate

21.30%

Male Poverty Rate

24.47%

Female Poverty Rate

Poverty in Columbia

The race most likely to be in poverty in Columbia is Native, with 68.66% below the poverty level.

The race least likely to be in poverty in Columbia is Islander, with 1.57% below the poverty level.

The poverty rate among those that worked full-time for the past 12 months was 3.59%. Among those working part-time, it was 32.57%, and for those that did not work, the poverty rate was 35.87%.

Columbia Poverty Rate by Education

Name Poverty
Less Than High School39.44%
High School25.47%
Some College15.85%
Bachelors or Greater6.19%

Columbia Poverty Rate by Employment Status and Sex

Name Poverty
Female Unemployed58.63%
Male Unemployed39.10%
Female Employed14.61%
Male Employed10.73%

Columbia Income

Columbia Income by Household Type

Name Median Mean
Households$42,875$66,233
Families$59,324$87,860
Married Families$88,814$120,380
Non Families$32,238$43,935

Columbia Marital Status

Columbia Marital Status

Marriage Rates

28.2%

Overall Marriage Rate

29.0%

Male Marriage Rate

27.2%

Female Marriage Rate

Columbia Married by Age and Sex

Columbia 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 35To44.

Columbia Marital Status by Race

Columbia Veterans

Columbia Veterans by War

8,124

Number of Veterans

6,862

Male Veterans

1,262

Female Veterans

Name Veterans
Second Gulf War2,628
Vietnam2,283
First Gulf War1,810
Korea527
World War II380

Columbia Veterans by Age

Name Veterans
35 to 542,339
18 to 341,695
55 to 641,617
75+1,256
65 to 741,217

Columbia Veterans by Race

Name Veterans % of Total
White4,1927.71%
Black3,7069.11%
Hispanic2455.77%
2 or More1416.33%
Other442.79%
Asian210.82%
Indian2024.10%

Columbia Veterans by Education

11.76%

Veteran Poverty Rate

22.13%

Veteran Disability Rate

Columbia Employment Status

Columbia Employment by Age

64.3%

Labor Force Participation

51.1%

Employment Rate

9.5%

Unemployment Rate

Columbia Employment by Race

Columbia Employment by Education

Columbia 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

53.89%

Born in South Carolina

94.55%

Native Born

5.45%

Foreign Born

3.82%

Non Citizen

Place of Birth

94.55% of Columbia residents were born in the United States, with 53.89% having been born in South Carolina. 3.82% of residents are not US citizens. Of those not born in the United States, the largest percentage are from Asia.