Açoriano Oriental
Hawaii is an example of the Portuguese 'renaissance' in the USA

The Portuguese population in the United States increased in the last Census due to a greater awareness of origins. The biggest example is Hawaii, which became the third state with the largest population of Portuguese origin

Hawaii is an example of the Portuguese 'renaissance' in the USA

Autor: Rui Jorge Cabral

Hawaii, the Pacific archipelago where a community of Azoreans moved to in the 19th century,  is today an example of the greater awareness of the third and fourth generations of emigrants of their Portuguese origins.

In the 2020 Census, Hawaii appears as the third US state with the largest Portuguese population (91,000), after California, with 350,000 inhabitants of Portuguese origin, and Massachusetts, with 265,000 Portuguese. In the 2010 Census, Hawaii was only the eighth US state with the largest Portuguese community.
Speaking to Açoriano Oriental, the director of the Portuguese Beyond Borders Institute at California State University, Diniz Borges, believes that there has been no phenomenon of internal migration of Portuguese from other states to Hawaii, but there has been an awareness among many third and fourth generations living in Hawaii of their Portuguese origin.

It should be noted that Portuguese descendants represent less than 0.5% of the US population, which was 331 million inhabitants in 2020.
The latest population census carried out in the United States of America (USA) reveals that in 2020 there were 1.454, 262 people of Portuguese origin living in the country. This number means an increase of around 50,000 people of Portuguese origin compared to the 2010 Census, which estimated that there were 1.405 million Portuguese or Portuguese descendants living in the USA.

And while the crisis that Portugal experienced at the beginning of the last decade may help explain a small part of this increase, the main explanation lies in a statistical factor that has greatly improved the accounting of the population of Portuguese origin, as Diniz Borges explains.
"Until 2010, there was no specific category for the Portuguese in the Census. Until then, the Portuguese had to select the 'other' origin and add 'Portuguese' to their origin. And some people didn't. In 2020, the Census not only allowed the choice of 'Portuguese' as an origin - with sub-selections of Azorean or Madeiran included in the Portuguese origin - but it also allowed people to now make various ethnic choices, being able, as is the case with many third and fourth generations, to choose Portuguese origin because they have a Portuguese grandparent or even great-grandparent among other origins," says Diniz Borges, for whom "all of this will have contributed to this increase in the number of Portuguese" in the United States of America.


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