Changes in the distribution of the African-American population are documented in U.S. Census data, and displayed in the maps in this gallery.

African Americans moved out of the South in two "waves"—the First Great Migration, following the Civil War, and the Second Great Migration, following the Great Depression. About 40 years ago, African Americans began reversing this pattern and moving to the South, instead of away from it. This is the so-called "New Great Migration."

Civil War
Noun

(1860-1865) American conflict between the Union (north) and Confederacy (south).

data
Plural Noun

(singular: datum) information collected during a scientific study.

Noun

the way something is spread out over an area.

First Great Migration
Noun

(~1915-~1930) movement of African Americans from the South, mostly to urban areas in the North.

Noun

symbolic representation of selected characteristics of a place, usually drawn on a flat surface.

New Great Migration
Noun

(~1970-present) movement of African Americans to the South.

population
Noun

total number of people or organisms in a particular area.

Second Great Migration
Noun

(~1930-~1970) movement of African Americans from the South, mostly to urban areas in the Midwest and West.

South
Noun

loosely defined geographic region largely composed of states that supported or were sympathetic to the Confederate States of America (Confederacy) during the U.S. Civil War.

Noun

count of everyone in the U.S., conducted every 10 years.