Lincoln, Nebraska Population 2021

293,446
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Lincoln is a city located in Nebraska. With a 2020 population of 293,446, it is the 2nd largest city in Nebraska (after Omaha) and the 69th largest city in the United States. Lincoln is currently growing at a rate of 0.75% annually and its population has increased by 13.57% since the most recent census, which recorded a population of 258,379 in 2010. Lincoln reached it's highest population of 293,446 in 2021. Spanning over 98 miles, Lincoln has a population density of 3,050 people per square mile.

The average household income in Lincoln is $76,763 with a poverty rate of 13.55%. The median rental costs in recent years comes to $852 per month, and the median house value is $169,800. The median age in Lincoln is 32.7 years, 31.8 years for males, and 33.6 years for females. For every 100 females there are 100.9 males.

Lincoln is the capital and the second-most populous city in Nebraska behind Omaha. Lincoln was founded as Lancaster in 1856 amid the salt flats and marshes. Lincoln is located in southeastern Nebraska, south of the Platte River.

The larger urban area has a population of 285,000, which makes it the 145th largest in the country. The Lincoln metropolitan area includes all of Lancaster County and Seward County. There is very little development outside of the city limits and Lincoln has no contiguous suburbs, with the largest town considered a suburb being Waverly, with a population of 3,300.

Refugees in Lincoln

Lincoln was designated as a refugee-friendly city by the government in the 1970s because of its size, educational institutions, and stable economy. Many refugees have settled in the city, and it was recently named as one of the Top 10 Most Welcoming Cities in America by Welcoming America. The refugee population began increasing in the 1980s in the area, and by the turn of the century, Lincoln had settled nearly 5,500 refugees. Lancaster County is now the 18th largest resettlement area in the country for Asian immigrants and refugees. Nebraska also ranks fifth in refugee resettlement per capita compared to other states of similar population.

Refugees from over 40 countries have settled in the city, which has brought new cultures and religions into the area. Lincoln is now home for Bosnian, Vietnamese, Afghani, Mexican, Russian, Kurdish, Sudanese, Ukrainian, Tajikistan, Chinese and other refugee populations.

In 2011 alone, 738 refugees from 13 countries made their way to Nebraska, but this official figure only includes people who were officially resettled in the state, not those who have moved to the area after being placed somewhere else.

The fastest-growing group of refugees in Lincoln is the Karen, who come from Thailand or Burma to escape an ethnic and political war. Close to 1,000 people from Thailand and Burma have arrived in the state since 2000, and there are estimated to be thousands of Karen in the state, with up to 1,500 in Lincoln. You can learn more about refugees in Nebraska here.

Lincoln Population Growth

In 2011, census estimates showed that Nebraska's population grew at a faster rate than the U.S. average for the past two years. Nebraska has been increasing at a rate of around 1% since 2008, while the U.S. population posted its smallest growth since 1945 of just 0.84%. Nebraska and Lincoln, in particular, are growing as more people move to the area for jobs, as the state has consistently had one of the lowest unemployment rates in the country.

Most of Nebraska is seeing a declining population, as most growth is concentrated around Omaha, Lincoln, Grand Island, and Kearney.

Lincoln Facts

  • Lincoln was named the healthiest city in the U.S. in 2008 and 2013 by the CDC.
  • Lincoln was renamed for recently assassinated President Abraham Lincoln.
  • Nebraska was once known as the Great American Desert.
  • The 911 emergency system, now used across the country, was first developed and used in Lincoln.
  • The University of Nebraska-Lincoln has the largest weight room in the United States that covers 3/4 of an acre.
  • Elephant Hall, a Lincoln museum, has the world's most extensive collection of elephant skeletons.
  • In 2014, the American Lung Association ranked the Lincoln-Beatrice area as being among the Cleanest U.S. Cities for Ozone Air Pollution.
  • Arbor Day got its start in Nebraska in 1872 when J. Sterling Morton proposed a holiday to promote planting trees in the state. About 1 million trees were planted on the first Arbor Day, and 45 other states had adopted the holiday by 1920.

Lincoln Demographics

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

  • White: 84.88%
  • Asian: 4.59%
  • Black or African American: 4.36%
  • Two or more races: 3.87%
  • Other race: 1.48%
  • Native American: 0.73%
  • Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander: 0.08%
The current population of Lincoln, Nebraska is 293,446, based on our projections of the latest US Census estimates. The US Census estimates the 2018 population at 286,930.The last official US Census in 2010 recorded the population at 258,379.

Lincoln, Nebraska Population 2021

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

Year Total Population Growth Annual Growth Rate
2021341,5222,5740.75%
2020338,9482,5740.76%
2019336,3742,5740.77%
2018333,8002,8250.85%
2017330,9753,5661.08%
2016327,4094,3191.32%
2015323,0903,4561.07%
2014319,6345,5311.73%
2013314,1033,7751.20%
2012310,3283,7091.20%
2011306,6193,6581.19%
2010302,9610.00%

Lincoln Metro Area Population by Year

Population by Race

Race Population Percentage
White240,93684.88%
Asian13,0214.59%
Black or African American12,3804.36%
Two or More Races10,9783.87%
Some Other Race4,2151.48%
American Indian and Alaska Native2,0830.73%
Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander2260.08%
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Lincoln Population by Race

Lincoln Population Pyramid 2021

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Lincoln Median Age

32.7


Total

31.8


Male

33.6


Female

Lincoln Adults

There are 219,949 adults, (36,952 of whom are seniors) in Lincoln.

Lincoln Age Dependency

55.1

Age Dependency Ratio

20.2

Old Age Dependency Ratio

34.9

Child Dependency Ratio

Lincoln Sex Ratio

Female

141,250

49.76%

Male

142,589

50.24%

Lincoln Population by Age

Lincoln Renter vs Owner Occupied by Household Type

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Lincoln Household Types

Type Owner Renter
Married80.3%19.7%
All57%43%
Male44.6%55.4%
Female39.3%60.7%
Non Family38.1%61.9%

57.0%

Rate of Home Ownership

Lincoln Households and Families

Type Count Average Size Owned
All113,5512.3857
Married49,6983.1380.3
Non Family48,3851.3838.1
Female10,5123.239.3
Male4,9563.0144.6

3.04

Average Family Size

2.38

Average Household Size

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Lincoln Households by Type

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Education Attained Count Percentage
Less Than 9th Grade5,0942.92%
9th to 12th Grade6,5373.74%
High School Graduate37,28021.35%
Some College37,01821.20%
Associates Degree19,47211.15%
Bachelors Degree43,25024.77%
Graduate Degree25,96414.87%
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Lincoln Educational Attainment by Sex (over 25)

Lincoln Educational Attainment by Race

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Name Total High School Bachelors
White146,274140,76760,985
Hispanic10,0727,0561,947
Asian7,7926,1713,636
Black6,6985,7651,593
Multiple Races3,2152,791967
Other Race2,2161,476360
Native American1,086857177
Islander16212926

The highest rate of high school graduation is among white people with a rate of 96.24%.

The highest rate of bachelors degrees is among asian people with a rate of 46.66%.

Lincoln Educational Attainment by Race

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Name Average Male Female
Overall$39,990$45,088$34,269
Less Than High School$26,096$31,189$20,067
High School Grad$30,413$33,834$23,873
Some College$35,927$43,761$30,733
Bachelors Degree$46,514$54,048$40,670
Graduate Degree$56,612$63,510$52,074

$39,990

Average Earnings

$45,088

Average Male

$34,269

Average Female

Lincoln Earnings by Educational Attainment

Lincoln Language by Age

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Lincoln Language

87.75% of Lincoln residents speak only English, while 12.25% speak other languages. The non-English language spoken by the largest group is Spanish, which is spoken by 4.50% of the population.

Lincoln Language

Lincoln Poverty by Race

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Name Total In Poverty Poverty Rate
White216,47424,24711.20%
Hispanic20,4745,02824.56%
Black11,1222,94026.43%
Multiple10,3242,36122.87%
Asian12,3302,09016.95%
Other3,8891,37235.28%
Native1,83439621.59%
Islander21416275.70%

13.55%

Overall Poverty Rate

12.54%

Male Poverty Rate

14.54%

Female Poverty Rate

Poverty in Lincoln

The race most likely to be in poverty in Lincoln is Islander, with 75.70% below the poverty level.

The race least likely to be in poverty in Lincoln is White, with 11.20% below the poverty level.

The poverty rate among those that worked full-time for the past 12 months was 2.92%. Among those working part-time, it was 25.91%, and for those that did not work, the poverty rate was 21.11%.

Lincoln Poverty

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Name Poverty
Less Than High School23.96%
High School11.99%
Some College9.07%
Bachelors or Greater3.82%

Lincoln Poverty Rate by Education

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Name Poverty
Male Unemployed37.44%
Female Unemployed35.73%
Female Employed10.76%
Male Employed8.36%

Lincoln Poverty Rate by Employment Status and Sex

Lincoln Income by Household Type

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Name Median Mean
Households$57,746$76,763
Families$78,165$96,766
Married Families$92,545$111,180
Non Families$36,007$47,216
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Income by Household Type

Lincoln Marital Status

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Marriage Rates

45.6%

Overall Marriage Rate

46.0%

Male Marriage Rate

45.3%

Female Marriage Rate

Lincoln Married by Age and Sex

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Lincoln 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.

Lincoln Marital Status by Race

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Lincoln Marital Status

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13,523

Number of Veterans

12,582

Male Veterans

941

Female Veterans

War Veterans
Vietnam4,691
First Gulf War2,862
Second Gulf War2,781
Korea1,186
World War II753

Lincoln Veterans by War

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Age Group Veterans
65 to 743,660
75+3,323
35 to 543,268
55 to 641,908
18 to 341,364

Lincoln Veterans by Age

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Name Veterans % of Total
White12,6366.63%
Black4274.72%
Hispanic3392.55%
2 or More1713.60%
Other1354.53%
Asian1241.19%
Indian302.15%

Lincoln Veterans by Race

Lincoln Veterans by Education

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6.53%

Veteran Poverty Rate

29.44%

Veteran Disability Rate

Lincoln Veterans by Education

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71.6%

Labor Force Participation

69%

Employment Rate

3.4%

Unemployment Rate

Lincoln Employment by Age

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Lincoln Employment by Race

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Lincoln 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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65.53%

Born in Nebraska

91.49%

Native Born

8.51%

Foreign Born

4.58%

Non Citizen

3.92%

Naturalized

Place of Birth

91.49% of Lincoln residents were born in the United States, with 65.53% having been born in Nebraska. 4.58% of residents are not US citizens. Of those not born in the United States, the largest percentage are from Asia.

Lincoln Place of Birth

Year Population Growth Annual Growth Rate
2021293,4462,1720.75%
2020291,2742,1720.75%
2019289,1022,1720.76%
2018286,9302,4030.84%
2017284,5273,1881.13%
2016281,3393,9941.44%
2015277,3453,2171.17%
2014274,1284,9991.86%
2013269,1293,2681.23%
2012265,8613,1711.21%
2011262,6903,2351.25%
2010259,45533,8741.41%
2000225,58133,6091.63%
1990191,97220,0401.11%
1980171,93222,4141.41%
1970149,51820,9971.52%
1960128,52129,6372.66%
195098,88416,9001.89%
194081,9846,0510.77%
193075,93320,9853.29%
192054,94810,9752.25%
191043,9733,8040.91%
190040,169-14,985-3.12%
189055,15442,15115.55%
188013,0030.00%

Lincoln Population by Year