North American Facts



  • Eighty-two percent of the population of North America is descendants of immigrants from Europe.
  • Among the smaller groups 13 percent are black, 3 percent Asian and one percent are American Indians.
  • Hispanics are descended from a mix of white, black and American Indian people from Spanish-speaking countries of Latin America such as Mexico, Puerto Rico and Cuba. 12 percent of the US population is Hispanic.
  • 92 percent of the population of the USA was born there. Many new immigrants are Hispanic.
  • The original peoples of North America were the American Indians who were living here for thousands of years before Europeans arrived.
  • The native people of America were called Indians by the explorer Christopher Columbus, but they have no collective name for themselves. Most American Indians prefer to be identified by tribe.
  • There are about 540 tribes in the USA. The largest are the Cherokee, Navajo, Chippewa, Sioux and Choctaw
  • Most black Americans are descendants of Africans brought here as slaves from 1600 to 1860.
  • Most European immigrants before 1820 were from Britain, so the main language is English.
  • Spanish is spoken by many Americans and French is spoken by 24 percent of Canadians.
  • A Sioux chief. Many Sioux Indians were killed by US cavalry in the massacre at Wounded Knee in 1890.