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THE CENSUS: A LOOK BACK AND A LOOK AHEAD

 

A census of the American population has been taken every ten years since the founding of the republic. Most of the time it has been relatively noncontroversial and when all the data collected are made available to genealogists several decades after the census was taken it provides a gold mine of information. The 2020 census, taking of which preparations are already been made, is like so many issues in our society today–one on which people take very different positions. Democrats don’t want a question about citizenship asked of census respondents whereas Republicans do. It is estimated that if no census question is asked, New York could gain a number of new Congressmen and -women which would be equal to or exceed Alabama’s total delegation to the U.S. House of Representatives. Alabama now has seven representatives and it is widely predicted that this number could go down to six since Alabama population gains have been small in comparison to several other states. When population figures are available for all states, the 435 seats in the House are distributed among the states based on their respective populations, providing that each state has at least one representative. If Alabama should be reduced to six representatives, it will be the duty of the Legislature to draw six equally populated districts. In recent years, federal courts have required not only district population equality but also that African Americans, who comprise approximately 25 percent of the state’s population have at least one district in which it is likely that a black person will be elected, i.e., a majority-minority district. Congresswoman Terri Sewell is currently the representative from this district. Her district, already bad gerrymandered, will probably have to be made less compact than it is now if she is to have a reasonably good chance of retaining her seat. She is the only Democrat in Alabama’s U.S. House delegation.

Here are some of the findings from the 2000 and 2010 censuses:
Hartselle is within the Decatur Metropolitan Area
Hartselle is also a part of the Huntsville-Decatur Combined Statistical Area Hartselle’s population was 14,255 when population figures from the

different enumeration districts were tabulated in 2010 Hartselle’s population in 2000 was tallied 12,019, meaning that the

City had gained 2,236 residents or 18.6 percent in the ten years

between censuses
A total of 92.25 percent Hartselle residents identified themselves as white 5.16 percent of Hartselle residents were African American in 2000
1.29 percent of Hartselle residents were Hispanic in 2000
No other group constituted 1 percent in 2000
There were 4,816 Hartselle households in 2000
A total of 3,534 families reside in Hartselle twenty years ago
35.4 percent of Hartselle households had children under 18 living

In the homes
59.1 percent of the households consisted of married couples
10.9 percent of the households were headed by women (no husband

In the household)
The population density in Hartselle in 2000 was 809 people per square mile There were 5,170 housing units in the City, with a density of 348 housing

units per square mile
The U.S. Bureau of the Census reported that Hartselle had a total

area of 14.9 square miles in 2010
There were 4,816 Hartselle households in 2000
Only 0.07 percent of Hartselle’s area was classified as “water”

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