Did you know that in 1950, 90% of America was white? Now, white people make up about two thirds of all races in the US. By 2050, that number will be at less than half. So, that begs the question – which states are hanging onto their whiteness? You could probably make a pretty good guess. It’s the places where white people are still doing what white people… do.
Stuff White People Like includes yoga, marathons, and, apparently, Maine. That’s at least according the most recent American Community Survey from the census that pegs Maine as the whitest in the country. And how white is Maine exactly? Well, basically as white as the snow that covers the ground for approximately the same amount of time each year — 93.6%.
For reference, America as a whole is about 61.3% white. So Maine is a cool 50% more white than America as a whole. So grab your Starbucks and stop playing Fortnite for a few minutes as we look at America’s Whitest States.
The 10 Whitest States In America For 2023
As a quick note, we considered “non-Hispanic or latino, white” as “white” for the purposes of this article.
We found it interesting that the Upper Northeast is the whitest part of the country — Maine, Vermont, and New Hampshire occupied prominent spots in the top ten. For some reason, the picture of the Midwest always seemed whitewashed in our minds. And, to a certain extent it is, but not quite as much as Upper New England.
On the other end of the spectrum, the further South and West you go, the more diverse it gets. Hawaii had previously earned the title of the most diverse state in the Union. Turns out, it also has the fewest amount of white people.
One place we’re not super excited to see in the top ten — Iowa. Given its position as the first state to conduct primaries for both parties, the fact that it doesn’t represent the diversity of America is disheartening.
Ok, so how did we get to this conclusion? Let’s take a look or if you’re simply not interested in reading about this list, check out:
The 10 Whitest States In America For 2023
Welcome to Maine, the whitest state in America. Here, 92.0% of the population is some shade of white. And, for a majority of the year, the ground is covered in white, too. Some of the whitest places in Maine include Brewer and Belfast which both clock in at over 96% white.
Why is Maine so white? For the most part, an ethnic person who wants to come to Maine with a family of four or five people is not going to find a home they can afford, and there’s almost no rental housing whatsoever here. According to research, the white folks in the great north don’t see racial diversity as a problem like people in the southern states do. It’s as if the white people up here don’t care that everyone is white.
So Maine might just like being so white.
Rank Last Year: 1 (No Change)
White Population: 1,248,581
Percent White : 92.0%
Percent Change: -0.8%
More On Maine: Photos | Rent
Our next stop is in Vermont, which is 91.9% white. It may not be a stretch to say that depending on where in Vermont you live, it’s possible that you also haven’t seen a person of color in a couple months.
Vermonters are very outdoorsy types. Camping, hiking and skiing are all very popular white things to do. People here are also very liberal and progressive. They support charities, care about the environment and are involved in their communities. Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts are still a big deal in these parts. So is Yoga. And, just like their friends in New Hampshire, just about everyone drives a Subaru. Or some other 4 wheel drive SUV type vehicle.
If you’re a person of color in New Hampshire, you’re very… lonely. The whitest places in Vermont are Rutland and Barre.
Rank Last Year: 2 (No Change)
White Population: 589,575
Percent White : 91.9%
Percent Change: -0.2%
More On Vermont: Photos | Rent
3. West Virginia
West Virginia. Mountain Mama. Take me home, my country roads. To the whitest places, like Moundsville and New Martinsville.
That song is from John Denver, a very white guy who is adored by…white people. His song about West Virginia talks about how beautiful the Mountain State is, but it doesn’t talk about how overwhelmingly non diverse the state is. A whopping 91.2% of people in West Virginia are white. Most of them are huuuuge NASCAR fans, which is probably the most white sport in the entire world. Kids are practically raised with headsets on in West Virginia.
Rank Last Year: 3 (No Change)
White Population: 1,643,042
Percent White : 91.2%
Percent Change: -4.5%
More On West Virginia: Photos | Rent
4. New Hampshire
We’re going back up to the northeast once again, where we stop in the very white state of New Hampshire. 88.9% of people in New Hampshire are white. Like many other states in the New England area, Farmers Markets, Subarus and Granola Bars are really popular in New Hampshire. And all are very much dominated by white people. Did you know that 97% of Subaru owners are white? Why is that? So interesting. Turns out that’s basically how white places like Franklin and Claremont are.
There’s so many white people in New Hampshire, that non white people who move here complain about the lack of diversity. If you speak Spanish when you move to New Hampshire, you’ll probably forget how to speak Spanish after a while.
Rank Last Year: 4 (No Change)
White Population: 1,220,505
Percent White : 88.9%
Percent Change: 0.2%
More On New Hampshire: Photos | Rent
Montana only has 900,000 people, and it would be hard to find less minorities in one state if you tried. Considering that 85.1% of the population here is white, that means that there are only around 18,000 African Americans and 16,000 Latinos in the entire state! And the whitest place in the state? We kid you not, Whitefish.
Why is it that only white people like cold weather anyways?
White people in Montana love to hunt. They love it so much, that a ton of people have deer stands in their front yards in Montana. Montana people will actually call in sick to work on the opening day of hunting season. You can judge a white Montana man by the number of does he plugged last winter, and by the size of his gun.
Rank Last Year: 5 (No Change)
White Population: 916,991
Percent White : 85.1%
Percent Change: 6.9%
More On Montana: Photos | Rent
Iowa has to be on this list. When you think about Iowa, you think about farming first, and then wrestling. Both are very white things to do. After Texas and Missouri, Iowa is third in America for number of farms.
Farmer John, Old MacDonald and Ray from Field of Dreams are all famous white farmers from Iowa.
What else is there to do in Iowa for fun? Cow tipping, building corn mazes and going to the state fair are popular modes of entertainment. And all three are very white things to do in cities such as Carroll and Manchester.
Rank Last Year: 6 (No Change)
White Population: 2,681,793
Percent White : 84.4%
Percent Change: -0.6%
More On Iowa: Photos | Rent
Here in the state of Kentucky, 83.6% of the population is white. Kentucky is home to horse breeders and bourbon makers, too, which are totally white things to do in your spare time. If you live in Kentucky, odds are you drive a pick up truck, drink Budweiser and chew tobacco. We’re talking about you, Cold Spring, KY guy.
So white people like basketball and chicken? Because that’s also what Kentucky is well known for. Let us know in the comments below.
Rank Last Year: 7 (No Change)
White Population: 3,759,079
Percent White : 83.6%
Percent Change: 0.9%
More On Kentucky: Photos | Rent
8. North Dakota
We move on to another cold state, North Dakota, where things are definitely mostly white.
Here, 83.1% of the population is white. And not just caucasian. I mean pale and pasty white. It’s pretty cold and dark here for a majority of the year, meaning the white population here has to find all sorts of creative ways to remain occupied for long stretches of the year. That means long hours spent indoors watching Seinfeld reruns and playing gin rummy.
Hockey is a totally white thing to play, and for many North Dakotans, hockey is a way of life. Did you know 1 in 5 kids plays hockey in North Dakota? It’s true.
The rest of North Dakota is made up of Native Americans at 5%, Latinos at 4%, and African Americans at 1%. A good example of a really white place in North Dakota? Valley City.
Rank Last Year: 8 (No Change)
White Population: 642,956
Percent White : 83.1%
Percent Change: 9.0%
More On North Dakota: Photos | Rent
Oh I’ve got friends in low places, where the whiskey drowns and the beer chases all my blues away… Everyone knows that cowboys are mostly white. So it’s no surprise that the Cowboy State is our ninth whitest state, right? Cowboys are a total white thing. They love ropin, ridin’ and mutton bustin. For all those who are not aware of mutton bustin, its when a kid tries to ride a sheep around for at least 8 seconds.
Here in Wyoming, 83.0% of the population is white. Only one percent is black, and about two percent is Native American here. That’s especially true in Sheridan.
Most people in Wyoming listen to country music, too, which is another white stereotype. Additionally, you can bet that there are a lot of people who go camping and hiking in Wyoming, since that’s something that’s mostly what white people do.
Rank Last Year: 9 (No Change)
White Population: 478,508
Percent White : 83.0%
Percent Change: 1.7%
More On Wyoming: Photos | Rent
10. South Dakota
Our tenth stop on the white tour of America bring us to, unsurprisingly, South Dakota. Here in South Dakota, the white population is 80.8%. Actually, 10% of the population in South Dakota is Native American, since there are some pretty big native american reservations in the Mount Rushmore State.
This is home to Mt. Rushmore, which has a giant monument featuring… 4 white guys. If you’re a white ice fisherman named Ned who drives his snowmobile to work every day, you likely live here in South Dakota. And even the whitest cities in the state have white names like Brandon.
Rank Last Year: 11 (Up 1)
White Population: 712,735
Percent White : 80.8%
Percent Change: 4.4%
More On South Dakota: Photos | Rent
The Methodology Behind The Whitest States In America
In order to determine the whitest states in America, we looked to the ultimate source of data — the US Census. The 2017-2021 American Community Survey provides the most recent data on the breakdown of race by state. In particular, table B03002 has the breakdown by Hispanic/latino and race.
We looked at the percentage of the population of each state that identified as non-Hispanic/latino, white. We then ranked the states from most white to least white.
Maine comes out on top as the whitest state in the country. You can download the data here.
Summary: The Whitest States in the US
After measuring the percentage of each state that is white, it’s clear – the north northeast (get it?) is definitely the Whitest place you could live in our country.
Here in america, there is this pattern of migration that determines where people move. In many of these places we just talked about, traditionally, there were no jobs, and there was no heritage, or culture to attract people of color to come to these states to settle. It will be interesting over time is to see if those migration patterns change.
Who knows. One day, maybe if ‘whitest states’ is a category on Jeopardy, these statistics will change. But for now, the white people in Maine, New Hamshire, Vermont, and all the other states we talked about will continue to do their white things in their little white bubble worlds.
Here’s a quick look at the least white states:
- New Mexico
For more reading, check out:
White Population By State In The United States For 2023
Whitest Places By State
Whitest Cities In Massachusetts
Whitest Cities In North Carolina
Whitest Cities In North Dakota
Whitest Cities In New Hampshire
Whitest Cities In Pennsylvania
Whitest Cities In Rhode Island
Whitest Cities In South Carolina
Whitest Cities In South Dakota
Whitest Cities In West Virginia