Durham, North Carolina Population 2020

283,429
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Durham is a city located in North Carolina. With a 2020 population of 283,429, it is the 4th largest city in North Carolina (after Charlotte, Raleigh, and Greensboro) and the 73rd largest city in the United States. Durham is currently growing at a rate of 1.59% annually and its population has increased by 24.13% since the most recent census, which recorded a population of 228,330 in 2010. Spanning over 113 miles, Durham has a population density of 2,526 people per square mile.

The average household income in Durham is $82,573 with a poverty rate of 15.88%. The median rental costs in recent years comes to $1,058 per month, and the median house value is $224,100. The median age in Durham is 33.9 years, 32.6 years for males, and 34.9 years for females. For every 100 females there are 88.9 males.

Durham is most-known for its role within the “Research Triangle” of North Carolina, which also includes the cities of Raleigh and Chapel Hill. The city is home to Duke University and is a diverse city that is known for its cultural events, schools and institutions, sports, music and the arts. Over 34,000 people are employed by Duke University and the Duke University Health System. Other major employers include IBM, Blue Cross & Blue Shield of NC, and the City of Durham, to name a few.

Durham Population Growth

The city of Durham has seen rapid population growth throughout its history. Most recently, the population has grown over 15% between the 2010 census and estimates taken in 2016. Before that, the polls between 2000 and 2010 recorded over 22% growth. A thriving economy, jobs at major companies, and educational opportunities will keep the city of Durham’s population on the upswing far into the future.

Durham was incorporated as a city in 1869, but its history began long before that. The Eno and the Occoneechi were believed to have first lived in the area and it is thought that there was once a village named Adshusheer located where Durham currently stands. In its early history, before the development of the region’s railroad, Durham was an agricultural center. The development of Hillsborough Road, which served as a major route through the state, led to population growth. A railroad depot was constructed before the Civil War. While growth was slow before the war, the end of the Civil War brought about much more rapid population growth. This was primarily because of the city’s thriving tobacco industry.

Durham was incorporated as a city in 1869. The early 1900s saw continued population growth because of the tobacco industry. Washington Duke's W. Duke & Sons Tobacco Company was a prosperous company that brought wealth to the city. However, antitrust laws broke up what was a monopoly, allowing the family to retain American Tobacco. The Dukes went on to become involved in the generation of electric power, establishing Duke Power, which is now known as Duke Energy and provided electricity to residents in North Carolina before eventually expanded to other states.

The city faced some troubles in 1914 when a fire destroyed much of the downtown business district. This led to the establishment of a city water system. Durham in its earliest years also became known its black community, with an area known as Hayti becoming home to some of the most successful black-owned businesses in the 20th century. The first publicly supported liberal arts college for blacks was also founded here in 1910. This university – North Carolina Central University – wasn’t the only institution the city became known for. Later, Trinity College became Duke University and is one of the most renowned colleges in the country.

Today, Duke University and Duke Medical Center are two of the city’s largest employers. City officials have also tackled a revitalization of the downtown area, including the construction of the $80 million “City Center Tower.” Other projects are currently underway, including the development of a boutique hotel, upscale restaurants, and a contemporary art museum.

Durham Demographics

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

  • White: 49.18%
  • Black or African American: 38.65%
  • Asian: 5.35%
  • Other race: 3.36%
  • Two or more races: 3.16%
  • Native American: 0.25%
  • Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander: 0.04%
The current population of Durham, North Carolina is 283,429, based on our projections of the latest US Census estimates. The US Census estimates the 2018 population at 274,557.The last official US Census in 2010 recorded the population at 228,330.

Durham, North Carolina Population 2020

2019 and 2020 population is estimated by projecting the raw 2018 numbers.

Year Total Population Growth Annual Growth Rate
2020651,2336,8661.05%
2019644,3676,8661.07%
2018637,50111,8231.85%
2017625,6787,4561.19%
2016618,22210,5161.70%
2015607,7068,4701.39%
2014599,2368,8721.48%
2013590,3648,6291.46%
2012581,7359,2151.58%
2011572,5206,2531.09%
2010566,2670.00%

Durham Metro Area Population by Year

Population by Race

Race Population Percentage
White132,63649.18%
Black or African American104,24338.65%
Asian14,4385.35%
Some Other Race9,0703.36%
Two or More Races8,5243.16%
American Indian and Alaska Native6800.25%
Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander1110.04%
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Durham Population by Race

Durham Population Pyramid 2020

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Durham Median Age

33.9


Total

32.6


Male

34.9


Female

Durham Adults

There are 211,232 adults, (31,154 of whom are seniors) in Durham.

Durham Age Dependency

49.8

Age Dependency Ratio

17.3

Old Age Dependency Ratio

32.5

Child Dependency Ratio

Durham Sex Ratio

Female

142,805

52.95%

Male

126,897

47.05%

Durham Population by Age

Durham Renter vs Owner Occupied by Household Type

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Durham Household Types

Type Owner Renter
Married74.5%25.5%
All50.2%49.8%
Female36.7%63.3%
Non Family35.8%64.2%
Male35.2%64.8%

50.2%

Rate of Home Ownership

Durham Households and Families

Type Count Average Size Owned
All109,5552.3650.2
Non Family47,8341.3135.8
Married40,3963.0674.5
Female16,3383.3536.7
Male4,9873.4535.2

3.07

Average Family Size

2.36

Average Household Size

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Durham Households by Type

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Education Attained Count Percentage
Less Than 9th Grade10,3125.68%
9th to 12th Grade11,3596.26%
High School Graduate29,83016.43%
Some College28,16015.51%
Associates Degree11,8696.54%
Bachelors Degree46,92025.85%
Graduate Degree43,06323.72%
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Durham Educational Attainment by Sex (over 25)

Durham Educational Attainment by Race

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Name Total High School Bachelors
White81,84879,20755,050
Black68,01259,60423,249
Hispanic18,5289,1452,523
Asian10,0869,1257,455
Other Race5,2002,670681
Multiple Races3,0712,7131,626
Native American549477138
Islander393939

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 100.00%.

Durham Educational Attainment by Race

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Name Average Male Female
Overall$40,975$43,023$39,060
Less Than High School$20,961$23,284$17,236
High School Grad$26,159$28,482$23,598
Some College$33,406$37,823$30,385
Bachelors Degree$50,559$54,863$45,434
Graduate Degree$63,076$74,556$57,476

$40,975

Average Earnings

$43,023

Average Male

$39,060

Average Female

Durham Earnings by Educational Attainment

Durham Language by Age

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Durham Language

80.39% of Durham residents speak only English, while 19.61% speak other languages. The non-English language spoken by the largest group is Spanish, which is spoken by 12.18% of the population.

Durham Language

Durham Poverty by Race

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Name Total In Poverty Poverty Rate
Black100,07419,23219.22%
Hispanic36,38510,52928.94%
White102,3997,8877.70%
Asian13,3022,32217.46%
Other8,8191,99222.59%
Multiple8,2051,83722.39%
Native66010816.36%
Islander981717.35%

15.88%

Overall Poverty Rate

15.11%

Male Poverty Rate

16.56%

Female Poverty Rate

Poverty in Durham

The race most likely to be in poverty in Durham is Hispanic, with 28.94% below the poverty level.

The race least likely to be in poverty in Durham is White, with 7.70% below the poverty level.

The poverty rate among those that worked full-time for the past 12 months was 3.15%. Among those working part-time, it was 21.14%, and for those that did not work, the poverty rate was 27.51%.

Durham Poverty

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Name Poverty
Less Than High School31.17%
High School19.28%
Some College11.84%
Bachelors or Greater4.75%

Durham Poverty Rate by Education

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Name Poverty
Female Unemployed31.48%
Male Unemployed30.37%
Female Employed9.48%
Male Employed6.62%

Durham Poverty Rate by Employment Status and Sex

Durham Income by Household Type

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Name Median Mean
Households$58,905$82,573
Families$79,435$101,620
Married Families$105,214$128,054
Non Families$42,525$54,827
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Income by Household Type

Durham Marital Status

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Marriage Rates

39.9%

Overall Marriage Rate

43.4%

Male Marriage Rate

37.0%

Female Marriage Rate

Durham Married by Age and Sex

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Durham 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 45-54.

Durham Marital Status by Race

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Durham Marital Status

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11,980

Number of Veterans

10,442

Male Veterans

1,538

Female Veterans

War Veterans
Vietnam3,475
First Gulf War3,236
Second Gulf War2,898
Korea800
World War II334

Durham Veterans by War

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Age Group Veterans
35 to 543,835
55 to 642,615
65 to 742,387
75+2,128
18 to 341,015

Durham Veterans by Age

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Name Veterans % of Total
White6,0315.68%
Black5,5386.86%
Hispanic3861.71%
2 or More2365.29%
Other1021.64%
Indian436.66%
Asian250.20%
Hawaiian57.81%

Durham Veterans by Race

Durham Veterans by Education

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6.64%

Veteran Poverty Rate

24.70%

Veteran Disability Rate

Durham Veterans by Education

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69.5%

Labor Force Participation

66.2%

Employment Rate

4.6%

Unemployment Rate

Durham Employment by Age

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Durham Employment by Race

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Durham Employment by Education

Origin of Non-Citizens

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

Origin of Naturalized Citizens

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47.10%

Born in North Carolina

85.03%

Native Born

14.97%

Foreign Born

10.02%

Non Citizen

4.95%

Naturalized

Place of Birth

85.03% of Durham residents were born in the United States, with 47.10% having been born in North Carolina. 10.02% of residents are not US citizens. Of those not born in the United States, the largest percentage are from Latin America.

Durham Place of Birth

Year Population Growth Annual Growth Rate
2020283,4294,4361.59%
2019278,9934,4361.62%
2018274,5574,7131.75%
2017269,8444,3451.64%
2016265,4996,8522.65%
2015258,6475,3572.11%
2014253,2906,2982.55%
2013246,9925,8752.44%
2012241,1175,7762.45%
2011235,3414,6142.00%
2010230,72743,6922.12%
2000187,03550,4243.19%
1990136,61135,4623.05%
1980101,1495,7110.58%
197095,43817,1362.00%
196078,3026,9910.94%
195071,31111,1161.71%
194060,1958,1581.47%
193052,03730,3189.13%
192021,7193,4781.76%
191018,24111,56210.57%
19006,6791,1941.99%
18905,4850.00%

Durham Population by Year