Lincoln is a city located in Lancaster County Nebraska. Lincoln has a 2023 population of 295,222. It is also the county seat of Lancaster County.Lincoln is currently growing at a rate of 0.44% annually and its population has increased by 1.32% since the most recent census, which recorded a population of 291,383 in 2020.
The average household income in Lincoln is $83,225 with a poverty rate of 13.02%. The median rental costs in recent years comes to - per month, and the median house value is -. The median age in Lincoln is 33 years, 32.2 years for males, and 33.9 years for females.
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.
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.
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.
According to the most recent ACS, the racial composition of Lincoln was:
Two or more races
Black or African American
Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander
Average Family Size
Average Household Size
Rate of Home Ownership
Less Than 9th Grade
9th to 12th Grade
High School Graduate
High School Graduation Rate
The highest rate of high school graduation is among white people with a rate of 75.35%.
The highest rate of bachelors degrees is among white people with a rate of 33.34%.
Other Indo-European Languages
Asian and Pacific Island Languages
87.33% of Lincoln residents speak only English, while 12.67% speak other languages. The non-English language spoken by the largest group is Spanish, which is spoken by 4.67% of the population.
Overall Poverty Rate
Male Poverty Rate
Female Poverty Rate
The race most likely to be in poverty in Lincoln is Islander, with 69.57% below the poverty level.
The race least likely to be in poverty in Lincoln is White, with 10.83% below the poverty level.
The poverty rate among those that worked full-time for the past 12 months was 2.46%. Among those working part-time, it was 25.63%, and for those that did not work, the poverty rate was 20.06%.
Overall Marriage Rate
Male Marriage Rate
Female Marriage Rate
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.
Second Gulf War
First Gulf War
World War II
Less Than 9th Grade
High School Graduate
Bachelors or Greater
Veteran Poverty Rate
Veteran Disability Rate
Labor Force Participation
Non citizens include legal permanent residents (green card holders), international students, temporary workers, humanitarian migrants, and illegal immigrants.
Born in Lincoln
95.26% of Lincoln residents were born in the United States, with 68.36% having been born in Nebraska. 4.86% of residents are not US citizens. Of those not born in the United States, the largest percentage are from Asia.