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White Americans in California

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

White Californians
Total population
28,611,160 (71.9%) whites
14,696,754 (36.5%) non-Hispanic whites (2019)
Regions with significant populations
Los Angeles County28% white
American English, American Spanish, Persian, Armenian, Russian, German, French, Portuguese, Italian, other European languages[1]
Christianity, Judaism, atheism, Islam[2]
Related ethnic groups
White Americans, white Hispanic and Latino Americans, white non-Hispanic white Americans

White Californians are white Americans living in California who currently make up 71.9% of the state's population.

As of 2015, California has the largest minority population in the United States. Non-Hispanic whites decreased from about 76.3–78% of the state's population in 1970[3] to 36.5% in 2019.[4] It was estimated in 2015 that Hispanic and Latino Americans became more numerous than non-Hispanic White Americans for the first time.[5] Since 2000 (the US Census), California has been known as the second state in US history (after Hawaii since its statehood in 1959) to have a non-white majority. The most common European ancestries in California are German, Irish, English, Italian, French, Scottish, Polish, Russian, Swedish, Norwegian, Dutch, and Portuguese.[6]


The first White people to come to the modern-day State of California were the Spanish people. The area that became California was a part of the Spanish Empire, and after 1821, part of Mexico. [7] While under Spanish and Mexican rule, California's population was a diverse mix of people with White, Mestizo, African and Indigenous ancestry, with Native people being the largest population. [8] By 1846, more White Americans had begun to enter California from other parts of the United States, making up 10% of the non-Native population. [9]

The California Gold Rush(1848–1855) began on January 24, 1848, when gold was found by James W. Marshall at Sutter's Mill in Coloma, California. [10] In 1848, there were 7,000 persons of Mexican and Spanish descent, 700 Americans, 200 Europeans, and 110,000 Native Americans.[11] The news of gold brought some 300,000 people throughout the Gold Rush to California from the rest of the United States and abroad.[12] Two-thirds of these new arrivals were Americans, mostly from the Atlantic Seaboard. [9] In 1850, a year after California's admission to the United States, the first state census showed California's entire non-Native population at 92,597. [11][9]

As a result of new arrivals from the American Midwest and continued immigration to the United States from other countries, California's White population grew, and by 1940, 90% of the state self-identified as White. [9] By 1990, following increased arrivals into the state of people of other races and nationalities, the White non-hispanic population had decreased, with 43% of the state population claiming Asian, African, Latin American or Native American ancestry. [13]

By region

San Francisco Bay Area

In 2000 the racial makeup of the nine-county Bay Area was 3,941,687 (58.1%) white and 3,392,204 (50.0%) non-Hispanic white.

In 2010 the Bay Area was 3,755,823 (52.5%) White. The Bay Area was 3,032,903 (42.4%) non-Hispanic white.

The percentage of non-Hispanic white people in the overall Bay Area is projected to decrease, while the percentage of non-Hispanic white people in the city of San Francisco is projected to increase.[14]

Central Valley

White Americans are the majority of the population in the Central Valley.

Los Angeles metropolitan area

54.6% White, 32.2% white alone. Malibu, Hidden Hills, Manhattan Beach, Agua Dulce, Calabasas and Agoura Hills have the highest percentage of whites in Los Angeles County.[15]

By county


Non-Hispanic whites make up 60% of registered voters in California.[16]

In the 2016 United States presidential election, California whites voted against Donald Trump by a 5 percentage point margin.


The non-Hispanic white population as a percentage of the whole is projected to decrease in California.[17]

See also


  1. ^ "State Language Data - CA".
  2. ^ "Religion in America: U.S. Religious Data, Demographics and Statistics". Pew Research Center.
  3. ^ "Historical Census Statistics on Population Totals By Race, California". Retrieved 26 August 2017.
  4. ^ "Census". Retrieved 26 August 2017.
  5. ^ Panzar, Javier (8 July 2015). "It's official: Latinos now outnumber whites in California". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 26 August 2017.
  6. ^ Area, Metro (2020-10-07). "The Demographic Statistical Atlas of the United States". Statistical Atlas (in Kinyarwanda). Retrieved 2021-04-24.
  7. ^ Building 201, Mailing Address: Golden Gate National Recreation Area; Francisco, Fort Mason San; Us, CA 94123-0022 Phone:561-4700 Contact. "The Spanish and Mexican period, 1776 to 1846 - Golden Gate National Recreation Area (U.S. National Park Service)".
  8. ^ Chan, Sucheng (2000). "A People of Exceptional Character: Ethnic Diversity, Nativism, and Racism in the California Gold Rush". California History. 79 (2): 44–85. doi:10.2307/25463688. JSTOR 25463688.
  9. ^ a b c d "Shaping California History". Retrieved 2021-05-22.
  10. ^ "The Gold Rush of California: A Bibliography of Periodical Articles". California State University, Stanislaus. 2002. Archived from the original on July 1, 2007. Retrieved 2008-01-23.
  11. ^ a b "Changing Demographics: El Dorado County". El Dorado: Land Use in California's Mother Lode. Retrieved May 21, 2021.
  12. ^ "California Gold Rush, 1848–1864". Learn, a site designed for the California Secretary of State. Archived from the original on July 27, 2011. Retrieved 2011-08-22.
  13. ^ "Shaping California History". Retrieved 2021-05-22.
  14. ^ "S.F. Could Be Much Whiter in 25 Years, While the Rest of Region Gets More Diverse". 26 October 2015. Retrieved 26 August 2017.
  15. ^ "White Ranking - Mapping L.A. - Los Angeles Times".
  16. ^ "Race and Voting in California - PPIC". Retrieved 26 August 2017.
  17. ^ Badger, Emily (1 February 2017). "Immigrant Shock: Can California Predict the Nation's Future?" – via


  • Maharidge, Dale, The Coming White Minority: California's Eruptions and America's Future, 1996, Times Books, ISBN 9780812922899
  • Sherburne Friend Cook, The Conflict Between the California Indian and White Civilization, 1943, University of California Press, ISBN 9780520031425
This page was last edited on 10 January 2022, at 06:02
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