German-Americans: Statistics and Facts

German American Demographics in the U.S.A.

Census figures show that German-Americans are, on average, slightly older and more educated than the population as a whole. More than 85 per cent live in the same place they did in 2009, and 40 per cent are employed in management, business, science or the arts.

Americans with German Ancestry by state according to the U.S. Census Bureau's American Community Survey in 2019

The map above shows the prevalence of Americans with German Ancestry in each state of the United States and in the District of Columbia. Data comes from the U.S. Census Bureau's American Community Survey 2019. This file will be updated upon the publishing of newer data.

5 States with the most Americans with German Ancestry


Americans with German descent

Today, more than 40 million Americans claim German ancestry, making up approximately 12.30% of the country's 328.2 million inhabitants.

States with the highest proportions of German-Americans tend to be those of the upper Midwest, including Iowa, Minnesota, Nebraska, Wisconsin, and the Dakotas; all at over 30%.

Of the four major US regions, German was the most-reported ancestry in the Midwest, second in the West and third in both the Northeast and the South.

German was the top reported ancestry in 23 states, and it was one of the top five reported ancestries in every state except Maine and Rhode Island.

A majority of counties in Pennsylvania, Michigan, Illinois, Missouri, Iowa, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Kansas, Nebraska, Wyoming, Montana and the Dakotas are predominantly German, and they make up a plurality of Ohio and Indiana counties.

What are the largest ancestry groups in the U.S.?

[The Top 5]

Updated June 28, 2020 | Infoplease

Rank Ethnicity Number
1 German 46,403,053
2 Black/African-American (non-Hispanic) 38,785,726
3 Mexican 34,640,287
4 Irish 33,526,444
5 English 24,787,018

Germantown, located in the Northwest section of Philadelphia, became the first permanent German settlement in what became the United States. The settlement was founded on October 6, 1683, by German Quaker and Mennonite families. Today the founding day of Germantown, is remembered as German-American Day, observed annually on October 6 in the United States.

German-Americans are the largest self-reported ancestral group in the United States.

A chart of the top ancestries in the US, as provided by the 2000 census.

A chart of the top ancestries in the US, as provided by the 2000 census. Light blue shows counties predominated by ethnic Germans.

Pennsylvania has the largest population of German-Americans and is home to one of the group's original settlements, Germantown in 1683. Germantown, founded in 1683 is the birthplace of the American antislavery movement.

In terms of proportions, however, Pennsylvania ranks tenth nationally in the percentage of German-Americans. Overall, 26.1 per cent of the State's population self-reported German ancestry, making it the largest ancestral group in the state.

5 States with the highest density of Americans of German descent

North Dakota
South Dakota

5 Communities with highest percentages of people of German ancestry

Monterey, Ohio
Granville, Ohio
St. Henry, Ohio
Germantown Township, Illinois
Jackson, Indiana

What is the most German city in America?

The city of New Ulm calls itself “the most German town in America.” New Ulm was founded by two groups of German immigrants in the mid-1850s, both looking to create a “Utopian German community.” Today, 66% of its residents claim German ancestry.

5 Top Counties by percentages of Germans

Emmons County, North Dakota
McIntosh County, North Dakota
Logan County, North Dakota
Hutchinson County, South Dakota
Faulk County, South Dakota

German American Religions by percentage

Christian, Protestant, significantly Lutheran, Reformed and Anabaptist but also multiple other branches
Roman Catholic

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