In certain corners of the US, the only way you’ll ever be considered a local is if you were born there. Particularly in rural pockets, where generation after generation stays close to old family farms or businesses, even someone who moved to the area during childhood is often considered a transplant.
Elsewhere, in major metropolitan centers like New York City, it can feel like no one is originally from there. The constant influx of new businesses, college students, and families can transform neighborhoods every few years and certainly decade over decade.
Using the most recent data from the US Census Bureau’s 2019 American Community Survey, Stacker ranked every US state and Washington D.C. based on the percentage of the total population that was born in that state of residence.
Results on this list might surprise some readers. Here are the states with the most and fewest natives, plus where Arizona fell among them.
– 2019 population: 3,080,156
– Born in state of residence: 839,064 (27.24% of population)
– Born in other US state: 1,575,292 (51.14% of population)
– Born in US territory: 55,148 (1.79% of population)
– Born in foreign country: 610,652 (19.83% of population)
Nevada wins the gold for the states with the fewest residents remaining. It is heavily dependent on gaming and tourism, and just over a quarter of its residents can say they were born there.
– 2019 population: 4,648,794
– Born in state of residence: 3,607,397 (77.6% of population)
– Born in other US state: 808,020 (17.38% of population)
– Born in US territory: 36,802 (0.79% of population)
– Born in foreign country: 196,575 (4.23% of population)
Louisiana ranks among the US News and World Report’s 50 Best States list for a number of reasons, including poverty rate and median household income. Considering such data, it does call into question whether the Louisiana natives stay because they want to or because leaving is too costly.
Where Arizona Falls
– 2019 population: 7,278,717
– Born in state of residence: 2,901,217 (39.86% of population)
– Born in other US state: 3,300,876 (45.35% of population)
– Born in US territory: 100,323 (1.38% of population)
– Born in foreign country: 976,301 (13.41% of population)
Home to the Grand Canyon, Arizona is also home to a majority of people who were not born there. In Stacker’s ranking of states from most to fewest natives, Arizona came in at No. 48.
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