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States with the biggest families

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YanLev // Shutterstock

States with the biggest family

Today, the “average” American family means an entirely different thing than it did fifty years or a century ago. In the mid-1940s, Pew Research found nearly half of Americans considered a family with four children as the ideal size. But a significant cultural shift in 1971 saw that figure decline rapidly as the two-child family took its place as the new most popular structure at an alarmingly similar rate. This change coincided with larger trends around increasing accessibility of birth control pills, growing female employment in the workforce, and changing child labor standards coupled with increasing cost of providing for children. In 2016, the average American family size hit 3.24, a far cry from 19th-century households that may have had eight or nine children.

To provide some perspective on what really constitutes the classic American family, Stacker used data from the U.S. Census to rank all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico by average family size. The figures come from the 2016 American Community Survey five-year estimates, with Census defining a family as a householder and at least one other person living in the same home who are related by birth, marriage or adoption.

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Aaron Hicklin // PublicDomainPictures

#52. Maine

Average family size: 2.87
Percent above/below national average: -11.42%
Total number of families: 345,631
Percent of families with children younger than 18 years old: 37.83%


 

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Petr Kratochvil // PublicDomainPictures

#51. Vermont

Average family size: 2.88
Percent above/below national average: -11.11%
Total number of families: 158,252
Percent of families with children younger than 18 years old: 39.60%


 

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Bobak Ha'Eri // Wikicommons

#50. North Dakota

Average family size: 2.95
Percent above/below national average: -8.95%
Total number of families: 183,466
Percent of families with children younger than 18 years old: 43.78%


 

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P199 // Wikicommons

#49. New Hampshire

Average family size: 2.96
Percent above/below national average: -8.64%
Total number of families: 346,476
Percent of families with children younger than 18 years old: 39.84%


 

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Billwhittaker // Wikicommons

#48. Iowa

Average family size: 2.98
Percent above/below national average: -8.02%
Total number of families: 798,664
Percent of families with children younger than 18 years old: 43.72%


 

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Tim Kiser // Wikicommons

#46 (tie). West Virginia

Average family size: 3.00
Percent above/below national average: -7.41%
Total number of families: 478,833
Percent of families with children younger than 18 years old: 36.74%


 

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Yinan Chen // Wikicommons

#46 (tie). Wisconsin

Average family size: 3.00
Percent above/below national average: -7.41%
Total number of families: 1,471,314
Percent of families with children younger than 18 years old: 42.55%


 

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Parkerdr // Wikicommons

#45. Montana

Average family size: 3.01
Percent above/below national average: -7.10%
Total number of families: 256,737
Percent of families with children younger than 18 years old: 40.27%


 

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Good free photos

#44. South Dakota

Average family size: 3.04
Percent above/below national average: -6.17%
Total number of families: 213,665
Percent of families with children younger than 18 years old: 43.52%


 

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OPMaster // WIkicommons

#42 (tie). Kentucky

Average family size: 3.05
Percent above/below national average: -5.86%
Total number of families: 1,136,651
Percent of families with children younger than 18 years old: 41.55%


 

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Chris Gent // Wikicommons

#42 (tie). Ohio

Average family size: 3.05
Percent above/below national average: -5.86%
Total number of families: 2,940,153
Percent of families with children younger than 18 years old: 42.10%


 

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Fibonacci Blue // Flickr

#39 (tie). Minnesota

Average family size: 3.06
Percent above/below national average: -5.56%
Total number of families: 1,380,760
Percent of families with children younger than 18 years old: 44.83%


 

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Julia // WIkicommons

#39 (tie). Nebraska

Average family size: 3.06
Percent above/below national average: -5.56%
Total number of families: 478,683
Percent of families with children younger than 18 years old: 45.37%


 

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Good Free Photos

#39 (tie). Wyoming

Average family size: 3.06
Percent above/below national average: -5.56%
Total number of families: 147,961
Percent of families with children younger than 18 years old: 43.33%


 

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alex grichenko // PublicDomainPictures

#37 (tie). Missouri

Average family size: 3.07
Percent above/below national average: -5.25%
Total number of families: 1,529,363
Percent of families with children younger than 18 years old: 42.27%


 

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GoodFreePhotos

#37 (tie). Oregon

Average family size: 3.07
Percent above/below national average: -5.25%
Total number of families: 979,610
Percent of families with children younger than 18 years old: 41.76%


 

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University of Michigan Library // Flickr

#34 (tie). Michigan

Average family size: 3.10
Percent above/below national average: -4.32%
Total number of families: 2,498,193
Percent of families with children younger than 18 years old: 41.44%


 

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Emy111 // Wikicommons

#34 (tie). Pennsylvania

Average family size: 3.10
Percent above/below national average: -4.32%
Total number of families: 3,195,577
Percent of families with children younger than 18 years old: 39.82%


 

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alex grichenko // PublicDomainPictures

#34 (tie). Rhode Island

Average family size: 3.10
Percent above/below national average: -4.32%
Total number of families: 256,464
Percent of families with children younger than 18 years old: 41.86%


 

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Brandonrush // WIkicommons

#32 (tie). Arkansas

Average family size: 3.11
Percent above/below national average: -4.01%
Total number of families: 757,729
Percent of families with children younger than 18 years old: 41.55%


 

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Good Free Photos

#32 (tie). Tennessee

Average family size: 3.11
Percent above/below national average: -4.01%
Total number of families: 1,674,753
Percent of families with children younger than 18 years old: 41.07%


 

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04stx // WIkicommons

#30 (tie). Kansas

Average family size: 3.12
Percent above/below national average: -3.70%
Total number of families: 729,881
Percent of families with children younger than 18 years old: 45.21%


 

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Sanfranman59 // WIkicommons

#30 (tie). North Carolina

Average family size: 3.12
Percent above/below national average: -3.70%
Total number of families: 2,515,338
Percent of families with children younger than 18 years old: 42.79%


 

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David Shankbone // Wikicommons

#27 (tie) . Colorado

Average family size: 3.13
Percent above/below national average: -3.40%
Total number of families: 1,318,973
Percent of families with children younger than 18 years old: 45.42%


 

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Derek Jensen // WIkicommons

#27 (tie) . Indiana

Average family size: 3.13
Percent above/below national average: -3.40%
Total number of families: 1,654,898
Percent of families with children younger than 18 years old: 43.47%


 

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Dacid Shaknbone // Flickr

#27 (tie) . South Carolina

Average family size: 3.13
Percent above/below national average: -3.40%
Total number of families: 1,220,791
Percent of families with children younger than 18 years old: 39.78%


 

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Etsy Ketsy // Wikicommons

#26. Washington

Average family size: 3.14
Percent above/below national average: -3.09%
Total number of families: 1,738,213
Percent of families with children younger than 18 years old: 43.71%


 

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Robbie Shade // Flickr

#25. Massachusetts

Average family size: 3.15
Percent above/below national average: -2.78%
Total number of families: 1,627,194
Percent of families with children younger than 18 years old: 43.17%


 

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Alger Carlton Harris Al // Public Domain Picutres

#22 (tie). Alabama

Average family size: 3.16
Percent above/below national average: -2.47%
Total number of families: 1,232,880
Percent of families with children younger than 18 years old: 40.14%


 

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Joe Mabel // Flickr

#22 (tie). Connecticut

Average family size: 3.16
Percent above/below national average: -2.47%
Total number of families: 894,413
Percent of families with children younger than 18 years old: 42.87%


 

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katsrcool // Flickr

#22 (tie). Oklahoma

Average family size: 3.16
Percent above/below national average: -2.47%
Total number of families: 967,783
Percent of families with children younger than 18 years old: 43.61%


 

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Tim Kiser // Wikicommons

#20 (tie). Delaware

Average family size: 3.17
Percent above/below national average: -2.16%
Total number of families: 232,569
Percent of families with children younger than 18 years old: 38.75%


 

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Ron Cogswell // Wikicommons

#20 (tie). Virginia

Average family size: 3.17
Percent above/below national average: -2.16%
Total number of families: 2,067,943
Percent of families with children younger than 18 years old: 43.56%


 

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Pixabay

#19. Washington, D.C.

Average family size: 3.19
Percent above/below national average: -1.54%
Total number of families: 121,101
Percent of families with children younger than 18 years old: 43.27%


 

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Canton Courthouse Square // WIkicommons

#18. Mississippi

Average family size: 3.23
Percent above/below national average: -0.31%
Total number of families: 746,858
Percent of families with children younger than 18 years old: 41.89%


 

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Mountain Home Air Force Base

#17. Idaho

Average family size: 3.24
Percent above/below national average: 0.00%
Total number of families: 408,281
Percent of families with children younger than 18 years old: 44.60%


 

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Ken Lund // Wikicommons

#15 (tie). Louisiana

Average family size: 3.26
Percent above/below national average: 0.62%
Total number of families: 1,122,841
Percent of families with children younger than 18 years old: 43.03%


 

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Good Free Photos

#15 (tie). Maryland

Average family size: 3.26
Percent above/below national average: 0.62%
Total number of families: 1,455,962
Percent of families with children younger than 18 years old: 43.69%


 

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Paul Brennan // Public Domain Pictures

#13 (tie). Florida

Average family size: 3.27
Percent above/below national average: 0.93%
Total number of families: 4,759,855
Percent of families with children younger than 18 years old: 37.81%


 

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Max Pixel

#13 (tie). Illinois

Average family size: 3.27
Percent above/below national average: 0.93%
Total number of families: 3,122,597
Percent of families with children younger than 18 years old: 44.14%


 

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Stan Shebs // Wikicommons

#12. Arizona

Average family size: 3.30
Percent above/below national average: 1.85%
Total number of families: 1,602,188
Percent of families with children younger than 18 years old: 42.27%


 

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Good Free Photos

#10 (tie). New Jersey

Average family size: 3.31
Percent above/below national average: 2.16%
Total number of families: 2,213,123
Percent of families with children younger than 18 years old: 44.51%


 

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Leonard J. DeFrancisci // WIkicommons

#10 (tie). New York

Average family size: 3.31
Percent above/below national average: 2.16%
Total number of families: 4,611,982
Percent of families with children younger than 18 years old: 42.81%


 

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Ken Lund // Flickr

#9. Georgia

Average family size: 3.33
Percent above/below national average: 2.78%
Total number of families: 2,443,757
Percent of families with children younger than 18 years old: 45.29%


 

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Mark Hufstetler // WIkicommons

#7 (tie). Nevada

Average family size: 3.36
Percent above/below national average: 3.70%
Total number of families: 658,692
Percent of families with children younger than 18 years old: 44.11%


 

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Good Free Photos

#7 (tie). New Mexico

Average family size: 3.36
Percent above/below national average: 3.70%
Total number of families: 490,155
Percent of families with children younger than 18 years old: 42.35%


 

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Alan Wu // WIkicommons

#6. Alaska

Average family size: 3.42
Percent above/below national average: 5.56%
Total number of families: 166,629
Percent of families with children younger than 18 years old: 47.84%


 

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cogito ergo imago // WIkicommons

#5. Puerto Rico

Average family size: 3.43
Percent above/below national average: 5.86%
Total number of families: 867,816
Percent of families with children younger than 18 years old: 38.17%


 

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Good Free Photos

#4. Texas

Average family size: 3.44
Percent above/below national average: 6.17%
Total number of families: 6,450,049
Percent of families with children younger than 18 years old: 47.87%


 

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Pedro Szekely // Flickr

#3. California

Average family size: 3.54
Percent above/below national average: 9.26%
Total number of families: 8,800,019
Percent of families with children younger than 18 years old: 45.83%


 

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W Nowicki // WIkicommons

#2. Hawaii

Average family size: 3.60
Percent above/below national average: 11.11%
Total number of families: 314,721
Percent of families with children younger than 18 years old: 38.37%


 

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Ken Lund // Wikicommons

#1. Utah

Average family size: 3.65
Percent above/below national average: 12.65%
Total number of families: 690,208
Percent of families with children younger than 18 years old: 51.28%


 

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