Charleston, South Carolina Population 2024

156,602

Charleston is a city located in Berkeley County, Charleston County, and Dorchester County South Carolina. Charleston has a 2024 population of 156,602. Charleston is currently growing at a rate of 0.94% annually and its population has increased by 3.89% since the most recent census, which recorded a population of 150,742 in 2020.

The average household income in Charleston is $123,658 with a poverty rate of 12.6%. The median rental costs in recent years comes to - per month, and the median house value is -. The median age in Charleston is 36.3 years, 34.6 years for males, and 37.7 years for females.

Charleston is the second-largest and oldest city in South Carolina. Located in Charleston County on Charleston Harbor, Charleston has a population of 120,000, although an official 2017 estimate places the population at {pop}.

Charleston Crime Statistics

Charleston was once one of the most dangerous cities in America based on the number of crimes committed per 100,000 people. The crime rate has been declining, however. In 1999, there were 597 crimes per 100,000 people, although the rate dropped to 236/100,000 people by 2011. This compares with the national average of 320/100,000 people.

Charleston Population Growth

Charleston is one of the fastest-growing cities in the United States. The greater Charleston area has one of the highest growth rates in America as more people move from surrounding counties to enjoy the city's rapidly improving economy. According to new census estimates, the Charleston MSA (or the Tri-County Area) was the 12th fastest-growing metro area in the U.S.

When Charles II of England retook the throne in 1660, he granted a charter to the Province of Carolina and sent the eight Lord Proprietors in 1663. It took several years for them to arrange for expeditions, although the first -- Charles Town -- was founded in 1670. Charles Town (which was later changed to Charleston) was settled by people from Bermuda under governor William Sayle. The settlement quickly became a major port town.

In 1718, the town was attacked by infamous pirate Edward Teach, better known as 'Blackbeard'. As the capital of the colony, Charles Town was the southernmost English settlement in America until the Georgia colony was established decades later. It was subjected to many attacks from France, Spain, and pirates for the 40 years.

Most early settlers were from England, the Barbados colony, and Bermuda. Among the first settlers were free people of color who were born in the West Indies to Englanders and Africans. Even in the beginning, Charleston attracted people from many religious and ethnic groups. It was once home to the richest and largest Jewish community in all of North America until 1830.

Charles Town was the most extensive and wealthiest city south of Philadelphia by the mid-1700s, becoming the 4th largest port in the colonies behind Boston, New York, and Philadelphia. Charleston was a significant point in the Revolutionary War. While it lost its status as the state capital in 1786, it became very prosperous with an economy dominated by cotton plantations until the mid-19th century. By 1860, almost 18% of the city's black population were free people of color or nearly 8% of the total population.

Charleston's 300-year history is evident in most neighborhoods, especially the city center, which has a large and well-preserved residential historic area that's popular with tourists. The city's downtown is free of skyscrapers. Instead, Charleston boasts historic plantation homes alongside new retail development.

Charleston Demographics

According to the most recent ACS, the racial composition of Charleston was:

  • White: 73.7%
  • Black or African American: 18.21%
  • Two or more races: 3.68%
  • Asian: 2.11%
  • Other race: 1.67%
  • Native American: 0.5%
  • Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander: 0.13%
Land Area (mi²)
115.1 sq mi
Density (mi²)
1,361.10/sq mi
Growth Since 2020
3.89% (5,860)
The current population of Charleston, South Carolina is 156,602 based on our projections of the latest US Census estimates.The last official US Census in 2020 recorded the population at 150,742.

Charleston, South Carolina Population 2024

Population by Race

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Race
Population
Percentage (of total)
White110,51773.7%
Black or African American27,30518.21%
Two or more races5,5133.68%
Asian3,1692.11%
Other race2,5101.67%
Native American7470.5%
Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander1990.13%

White

Black or African American

Two or more races

Asian

Other race

Native American

Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander

Charleston Population by Race

Charleston Population Pyramid 2024

Charleston Median Age

36.3

Total

34.6

Male

37.7

Female

Charleston Adults

There are 124,842 adults, (24,375 of whom are seniors) in Charleston.

Charleston Age Dependency

49.3

Age Dependency Ratio

24.3

Old Age Dependency Ratio

25

Child Dependency Ratio

Charleston Sex Ratio

Female78,77852.53%
Male71,18247.47%

Charleston Population by Age

Charleston Renter vs Owner Occupied by Household Type

Household Type
Count
Average Size
Owner
Renter
All65,1982.2155.644.4
Non Family31,3651.4238.361.7
Married26,4752.8679.120.9
Female5,6293.342.657.4
Male1,7293.0453.246.8

2.9

Average Family Size

2.21

Average Household Size

55.6%

Rate of Home Ownership

Married

Male

Female

NonFamily

owner

renter

Charleston Households and Families

Male

Female

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Education Attained
Count
Percentage
Less Than 9th Grade1,0580.99%
9th to 12th Grade3,5543.33%
High School Graduate16,34815.32%
Some College16,96115.89%
Associates Degree7,5587.08%
Bachelors Degree37,58235.21%
Graduate Degree23,68122.19%

Less Than 9th Grade

9th to 12th Grade

High School Graduate

Some College

Associates Degree

Bachelors Degree

Graduate Degree

Charleston Educational Attainment by Sex (over 25)

Charleston Educational Attainment by Race

High School Graduation Rate

Bachelors Rate

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Race
Total
High School
Bachelors
White79,39177,87752,019
Black18,18915,8754,685
Hispanic3,8653,3361,587
2+ Races2,8132,6821,763
Asian2,3462,2521,571
Other Race1,8681,575694
Native American32326140
Islander1531060

The highest rate of high school graduation is among white people with a rate of 98.09%.

The highest rate of bachelors degrees is among asian people with a rate of 66.97%.

Charleston Educational Attainment by Race

All

Male

Female

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Name
Average
Male
Female
Overall$56,855$63,197$49,150
Less Than 9th Grade$26,475$27,464$24,028
High School Graduate$34,405$40,114$29,311
Some College$46,106$55,433$38,296
Bachelors Degree$64,692$72,326$57,460
Graduate Degree$73,419$99,575$63,072

$56,855

Average Earnings

$63,197

Average Male

$49,150

Average Female

Charleston Earnings by Educational Attainment

Charleston Language by Age

Only English

Spanish

Other Indo-European Languages

Asian and Pacific Island Languages

Other Languages

Charleston Language

92.92% of Charleston residents speak only English, while 7.08% speak other languages. The non-English language spoken by the largest group is Spanish, which is spoken by 3.3% of the population.

Charleston Language

Charleston Poverty by Race

rate

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Name
Total
In Poverty
Poverty Rate
White102,9189,5359.26%
Black26,6486,21223.31%
Hispanic6,9111,56522.65%
Multiple5,09983416.36%
Native72734547.46%
Other2,44931412.82%
Asian3,0052327.72%
Islander199136.53%

12.6%

Overall Poverty Rate

10.58%

Male Poverty Rate

14.36%

Female Poverty Rate

Poverty in Charleston

The race most likely to be in poverty in Charleston is Native, with 47.46% below the poverty level.

The race least likely to be in poverty in Charleston is Islander, with 6.53% below the poverty level.

The poverty rate among those that worked full-time for the past 12 months was 2.15%. Among those working part-time, it was 22.41%, and for those that did not work, the poverty rate was 22.14%.

Charleston Poverty

rate

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Rate
Poverty
Less Than 9th Grade20.77%
High School17.68%
Some College7.53%
Bachelors or Greater5.1%

Charleston Poverty Rate by Education

rate

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Rate
Poverty
Female Unemployed44.03%
Male Unemployed39.02%
Female Employed8.41%
Male Employed4.54%

Charleston Poverty Rate by Employment Status and Sex

Charleston Income by Household Type

Households

Families

MarriedFamilies

NonFamilies

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Name
Median
Mean
Households$83,891$123,658
Families$117,849$163,046
Married Families$137,343$-999,999,999
Non Families$59,677$79,171

mean

median

Income by Household Type

Charleston Marital Status

Married

Widowed

Divorced

Separated

NeverMarried

Marriage Rates

43.5%

Overall Marriage Rate

47.3%

Male Marriage Rate

40.2%

Female Marriage Rate

Charleston Married by Age and Sex

male

female

Charleston Marriage

The age group where males are most likely to be married is Over 65, while the female age group most likely to be married is 35-44.

Charleston Marital Status by Race

Married

Widowed

Divorced

Separated

NeverMarried

Charleston Marital Status

Second Gulf War

First Gulf War

Vietnam

Korea

World War II

9,087

Number of Veterans

8,263

Male Veterans

824

Female Veterans

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War
Veterans
Vietnam3,140
First Gulf War2,349
Second Gulf War2,130
Korea703
World War II129

Charleston Veterans by War

count

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Age Group
Veterans
65 to 742,255
75+2,089
35 to 542,037
55 to 641,690
18 to 341,016

Charleston Veterans by Age

count

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Name
Veterans
% of Total
White5,8926.3%
Black2,65612.77%
2+ Races3228.37%
Asian1817.24%
Hispanic1673.33%
Other Race190.87%
Islander1711.11%

Charleston Veterans by Race

Charleston Veterans by Education

Less Than 9th Grade

High School Graduate

Some College

Bachelors or Greater

7.6%

Veteran Poverty Rate

24.9%

Veteran Disability Rate

Charleston Veterans by Education

LaborForceParticipation

67.6%

Labor Force Participation

64.1%

Employment Rate

3.7%

Unemployment Rate

Charleston Employment by Age

LaborForceParticipation

Charleston Employment by Race

LaborForceParticipation

Charleston Employment by Education

Origin of Non-Citizens

Europe

Asia

Africa

Oceania

Latin America

North America

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

Origin of Naturalized Citizens

Europe

Asia

Africa

Oceania

Latin America

North America

41.4%

Born in Charleston

94.63%

Native Born

5.37%

Foreign Born

2.36%

Non Citizen

3.01%

Naturalized

Place of Birth

94.63% of Charleston residents were born in the United States, with 41.4% having been born in South Carolina. 2.36% of residents are not US citizens. Of those not born in the United States, the largest percentage are from Latin America.

Charleston Place of Birth

Note: data after 2022 is projected based on recent change

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Year
Population
Growth
Growth Rate
2029163,9271,4650.9%
2028162,4621,4650.91%
2027160,9971,4650.92%
2026159,5321,4650.93%
2025158,0671,4650.94%
2024156,6021,4650.94%
2023155,1371,4650.95%
2022153,6721,8891.24%
2021151,7831,0410.69%
2020150,74212,7699.25%
2019137,9731,6141.18%
2018136,3595020.37%
2017135,8571,2200.91%
2016134,6372,0401.54%
2015132,5973,0052.32%
2014129,5922,2081.73%
2013127,3842,0531.64%
2012125,3312,2261.81%
2011123,1052,3451.94%
2010120,76024,11024.95%
200096,65016,23620.19%
199080,41410,63515.24%
198069,7792,8344.23%
197066,9451,0201.55%
196065,925-4,249-6.05%
195070,174-1,101-1.54%
194071,2759,01014.47%
193062,265-5,692-8.38%
192067,9579,12415.51%
191058,8333,0265.42%
190055,8078521.55%
189054,9554,9719.95%
188049,9841,0282.1%
187048,9568,43420.81%
186040,522-2,463-5.73%
185042,98513,72446.9%
184029,261-1,028-3.39%
183030,2895,50922.23%
182024,780690.28%
181024,7115,88731.27%
180018,8242,46515.07%
179016,35900%
showing: 42 rows

Charleston Population by Year