Tallahassee is a city located in Leon County, Florida. With a 2020 population of 199,205, it is the 9th largest city in Florida and the 122nd largest city in the United States. Tallahassee is currently growing at a rate of 1.44% annually and its population has increased by 9.83% since the most recent census, which recorded a population of 181,376 in 2010. Spanning over 104 miles, Tallahassee has a population density of 1,983 people per square mile.
The average household income in Tallahassee is $64,922 with a poverty rate of 26.73%. The median rental costs in recent years comes to $995 per month, and the median house value is $193,100. The median age in Tallahassee is 26.8 years, 26.5 years for males, and 27.1 years for females. For every 100 females there are 89.6 males.
Tallahassee is the capital of the state of Florida and the county seat of Leon County in Florida's panhandle. The city is a popular college town with the Florida State University, Florida A&M University, and Tallahassee Community College.
Leon County is the most highly educated city in Florida with 49.9% of residents holding a Bachelor's, Master's, professional or doctoral degree, compared to the national average of 24% and the Florida average of 22%.
Tallahassee Population Growth
The city posted a 273% increase in its population in 1880 when it grew from 384 people to more than 1,400, but the most significant growth occurred in 1930 when the population soared from 10,000 to almost 52,000. Since then, Tallahassee has posted double-digit growth in every census except 1990, when it grew 10%.
- Tallahassee's Florida A&M University is the largest historically black university in the country.
- The name Tallahassee comes from a Muskogean Indian word meaning "old fields." Indians migrated through the region during the 18th and 19th centuries.
- It's believed the first Christmas celebrated in the United States was observed in the DeSoto encampment in 1539 in what is now Tallahassee.
- Tallahassee is the only capital in the southeast of the Mississippi that was never taken by Union Forces during the Civil War.
- It's very rare to have a white Christmas in Tallahassee; the last was in 1989.
- Tallahassee is home to the National High Magnetic Field Laboratory, the largest magnet lab in the world with equipment capable of generating a magnetic field 1,000,000x stronger than that of the earth.
Many Spanish missions were established in the territory of Apalachee during the 17th century for food and labor for a colony at St. Augustine. The expedition led by Hernando de Soto occupied the Apalachee town called Anhaica in what is now Tallahassee.
General Andrew Jackson fought two skirmishes near Tallahassee during the First Seminole War. Chief Neamathla of the village Fowltown near present-day Tallahassee refused Jackson's orders to leave, so he burned the town and drove off the residents. When Jackson reentered the state in 1818, his adjutant said they "advanced on the Indian village called Tallahassee."
Tallahassee was founded in 1824 on the site of previous Native American and Spanish settlements, and the new city was planned to serve as a center for the government in the Territory of Florida. The same year, the Marquis de Lafayette, a French hero of the American Revolution, toured the country and Congress gave him $200,000 (the amount he gave the colonies in 1778), citizenship and the Lafayette Land Grant, an area of land that includes much of present-day Tallahassee.
Tallahassee became a center for the slave trade in Florida and the capital of the Cotton Belt. In the 19th century, Florida State University was established, which is the beginning of Tallahassee's history as a university town. When slavery ended, the city's trade moved to tourism, cattle ranching, lumber and citrus, and many former plantations were purchased by wealthy northerners for winter hunting grounds.
Tallahassee remained a small town until World War II with most of its population living within one mile of the capital.