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Population and Demography of South Carolina

South Carolina is a state in the coastal Southeastern region of the United States. It is bordered to the north by North Carolina, to the southeast by the Atlantic Ocean, and to the southwest by Georgia across the Savannah River. 

South Carolina is the 23rd most populous state in the United States. The total Land area is 30,109 square miles (77,982 square kilometers) and there is an average of 157 people for every square mile. This makes South Carolina the 19th most densely populated state in the US. As per the  United States Census Bureau, the population of South Carolina in 2020 is 5,118,425 (5.1 million) 

Population of South Carolina in 2024 – 5,373,555 or 5.4 million
South Carolina Population (2010-2020)

South Carolina has a population growth rate of 10.7% during 2010-2020. It has had a population increase of 493,061  since 2010. The median age across the population of South Carolina is approximately 38.8 years of age. 

South CarolinaCensus 2020
Total Population5,118,425 (5.1 million)
Median Age38.8 years
Population Rank23rd
Total Land Area30,109 sq mi (77,982 km2)
Area Rank40th
Population Density157/sq mi (60.6/km2)
Capital CityColumbia
Largest CityCharleston

Source: US Census 2020 and estimates

South Carolina Historical Population

In the year 1910, South Carolina’s population was 1.3 million and in 2020 it reached 5.1 million, an increase of almost 4 million. 

Let’s look at decade population & percentage change 

YearPopulation% Change

Source: US Census 2020

Religion and Affiliations

Christianity is the majority religion in South Carolina followed by 78% of the population. The largest Christian denomination in California is Protestant (66%); Roman Catholic (10%); Mormonism (1%); Eastern Orthodoxy (1%); Jehovah’s Witnesses (1%)

Next comes the Unaffiliated population, 19% of the population doesn’t follow or adhere to any faith or religion. Other non-Christian-based religions and faiths are followed by 3% of the population and include Hindu, Jewish, Buddhist, and Islam.

Source: Pew Research Center

For more details read Religion in South Carolina

Race and Ethnicity 

In 2020, the White alone (non-Hispanic) population was the largest racial or ethnic group in South Carolina, comprising 62.10% of the total population. It was followed by the African American population whose share was 24.79%. The Hispanic or Latino population was the third largest group at 6.89%. Two or more races are at 3.79% and the Asian population was at 1.75%.

Ancestry in South Carolina

As per Census Studies & estimate American, German, English, Irish, and Italian have made the five largest ancestry groups in South Carolina

For more Details read Race and Ethnicity in South Carolina

Cities and Counties in South Carolina

As of 2022, South Carolina is divided into 46 counties. The most populous county in South Carolina is Greenville County  and The Largest county by Land Area in South Carolina is Charleston County 

The two largest cities in South Carolina are Charleston (150,227) and Columbia (136,632), followed by North Charleston (114,852). Other Cities have a population of less than 100 thousand.

read more about Cities and Counties in South Carolina

South Carolina Population 2024 | South Carolina Demographics