ChicagoWest / Southwest

Hispanics become the majority in Humboldt Park, even as their numbers decline

by Joseph Askins on 1/4/11

Humboldt Park (May 2000).

The Hispanic population of Humboldt Park fell by 4% in the past decade, dropping from 31,607 to 30,337, according to new Census data. But due to a steeper rate of decline in the community area’s total population, Hispanics actually became the majority demographic in Humboldt Park, rising from 48% in 2000 to 52.5% in 2009.

Chalk up the shift from plurality to majority to an out-migration of Humboldt Park’s black residents during the same period. In 2000, Humboldt Park’s black population was 31,207, or 47.4% of the total population (almost equal to the Hispanic population at the time). Over the decade, the black population dropped by 23.8% to 23,766 people, or 41.1% of the total population in 2009.

The white population rose 30.1% between 2000 and 2009. At the start of the decade, there were 2,184 white residents in Humboldt Park, or 3.3% of the total population; by 2009, there were 2,841, or 4.9% of the total population.

As we’ve noted in the past, Humboldt Park the community area (to which these numbers apply) doesn’t exactly correspond to Humboldt Park the neighborhood, which spreads into the parts of West Town just west of Wicker Park and Ukrainian Village. (I think I can single out these census tracts elsewhere — if so, I’ll post my findings for them later on.) And it’s also important to note that even in Humboldt Park’s case, “Hispanic” doesn’t simply mean “Puerto Rican” — as of 2000, the community area’s Hispanic population actually consisted of more Mexicans than Puerto Ricans.

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{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Joseph Askins January 4, 2011 at 3:38 PM

West Town’s six “East Humboldt Park” census tracts (bounded by Western, Chicago, California, and Bloomingdale avenues) have the current breakdown:

Hispanic: 47.1%
White: 35.6%
Black: 14.9%

The Hispanic population in East Humboldt Park is pretty evenly distributed. The majority of East Humboldt Park’s white residents live in the neighborhood’s two southernmost census tracts: one bounded by Western, Chicago, Rockwell, and Division, and one bounded by Rockwell, Chicago, California, and Evergreen. The majority of black residents live in the next two tracts north: one bounded by Western, Division, Rockwell, and North, and one bounded by Rockwell, Division, California, and North.

When you add those tracts’ populations into the Humboldt Park community area data from the above post, you get the following breakdown for the entire Humboldt Park neighborhood:

Hispanic: 51.1%
Black: 34.5%
White: 12.7%

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Joseph Askins January 4, 2011 at 4:45 PM

Re: “Hispanic” — if you pull out the numbers from every census tract, you’ll find that Humboldt Park’s Mexican population still outnumbers the Puerto Rican population by about 3,000 people.

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