Who’s Colorado Native? Not As Many As You’d Think

Aug 15, 2014

As Colorado’s population steadily rises, many are quick to sport their “native” bumper stickers. The older the Subaru and rattier the bumper sticker, the better the bragging rights. It turns out though that Colorado is one of the most diverse when it comes to domestic migration.

This finding comes thanks to The New York Times, which analyzed census data over the last century for all 50 states. As of 2012, according to the Census, only 42 percent of the state should be sporting the familiar green plated bumper sticker.

So who's moving here? A growing number of Californians are entering Colorado and the West. Texas, Illinois and New York also provide strong migration pipelines. Other countries have provided a boost for the state’s population. In 2012, 11 percent of Colorado residents were born outside the United States.

A screencap from New York Times web site, which analyzed census data over the last century.
Credit The Upshot / New York Times

The growing interest in Colorado as a place to live, work and play landed Denver at No. 6 on Forbes’ Top 10 fastest Growing Cities in 2014. In recent years, migration has been fueled by economic growth, high-wage jobs in sectors like oil and gas and interest in the state’s healthy, outdoor lifestyle. Today, more than 5 million live in Colorado — more than three-fourths [.pdf] on the Front Range.

For all the diversity of Colorado’s recent settlers, Census data also illustrates that the number of native Coloradans has nearly doubled over the last century. That’s plenty big enough to support the growing number of “native” bumper stickers popping up around the state.

Not sure if someone is a Colorado native or not? You can ask them to take the test - [Ed. Note: be sure to click on "No Thanks, just the results" when it asks for registration. Thx roundart.].