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Second Cities: Keeping Pace with a Booming New York

October 25, 2012

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In 1850, New York passed the 500,000 population threshold. Baltimore, the next most populous city in the country at that time, held roughly one-third of New York’s population. Through population increase as well as annexation, New York City's population grew substantially over the next 160 years, outpacing the growth of other large cities. Four cities have achieved the rank of 2nd city in the U.S. between 1790 and 2010: Philadelphia, Baltimore, Chicago, and Los Angeles.

SOURCE: Decennial censuses 1790 to 2010