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Facts for Features
CB12-FF.05
Feb. 22, 2012

Women's History Month: March 2012

National Women's History Month's roots go back to March 8, 1857, when women from New York City factories staged a protest over working conditions. International Women's Day was first observed in 1909, but it wasn't until 1981 that Congress established National Women's History Week to be commemorated the second week of March. In 1987, Congress expanded the week to a month. Every year since, Congress has passed a resolution for Women's History Month, and the President has issued a proclamation.

157.0 million

The number of females in the United States according to the 2010 Census. The number of males was 151.8 million.
Source: Profile of General Population and Housing Characteristics: 2010
<http://factfinder2.census.gov/bkmk/table/1.0/en/DEC/10_DP/DPDP1>

At 85 and older, there were more than twice as many women as men.
Source: Profile of General Population and Housing Characteristics: 2010
<http://factfinder2.census.gov/bkmk/table/1.0/en/DEC/10_DP/DPDP1>

Motherhood

85.4 million

Estimated number of mothers of all ages in the United States.
Source: Unpublished data from the Survey of Income and Program Participation, 2008

2.3

Average number of children that women 40 to 44 had given birth to as of 2008, down from 3.4 children in 1976, the year the Census Bureau began collecting such data.
Source: CPS numbers published in the White House report on women in America
<http://www.whitehouse.gov/sites/default/files/rss_viewer/Women_in_America.pdf>

The percentage of women in this age group who had given birth was 81 percent in 2010, down from 90 percent in 1976.
Source: Fertility of American Women: 2010 table 1 and Historical table 2 <http://www.census.gov/hhes/fertility/data/cps/>

Earnings

$36,931

The median annual earnings of women 15 or older who worked year-round, full time, in 2010, unchanged from 2009.
Source: Income, Poverty, and Health Insurance Coverage in the United States: 2010
<http://www.census.gov/prod/2011pubs/p60-239.pdf>

Education

30.7 million

Number of women 25 and older with a bachelor's degree or more in 2010, higher than the corresponding number for men (29.2 million). Women had a larger share of high school diplomas (including equivalents), as well as associate, bachelor's and master's degrees. More men than women had a professional or doctoral degree.
Source: Educational Attainment in the United States: 2010
<http://www.census.gov/hhes/socdemo/education/data/cps/2010/tables.html>

29.6%

Percent of women 25 and older who had obtained a bachelor's degree or more as of 2010.
Source: Educational Attainment in the United States: 2010
<http://www.census.gov/hhes/socdemo/education/data/cps/2010/tables.html>

11.3 million

Number of college students in fall 2010 who were women.
Source: School Enrollment in the United States: 2010 <http://www.census.gov/hhes/school/data/cps/2010/tables.html>

Businesses

$1.2 trillion

Revenue for women-owned businesses in 2007.
Source: Survey of Business Owners: Women-Owned Businesses: 2007 <http://www.census.gov/econ/sbo/>

7.8 million

The number of women-owned businesses in 2007.
Source: Survey of Business Owners: Women-Owned Businesses: 2007 <http://www.census.gov/econ/sbo/>

7.5 million

Number of people employed by women-owned businesses in 2007.

Nearly half of all women-owned businesses (45.9 percent) operated in repair and maintenance; personal and laundry services; health care and social assistance; and professional, scientific and technical services. Women-owned businesses accounted for 52.0 percent of all businesses operating in the health care and social assistance sector.
Source: Survey of Business Owners: Women-Owned Businesses: 2007 <http://www.census.gov/econ/sbo/>

4

Number of states with at least 500,000 women-owned businesses in 2007 were California, Texas, New York and Florida. California had 1.0 million women-owned businesses, Texas had 609,947 or 7.8 percent of all women-owned businesses in the United States, New York had 594,517 or 7.6 percent, and Florida had 581,045, or 7.4 percent.
Source: Survey of Business Owners: Women-Owned Businesses: 2007 <http://www.census.gov/econ/sbo/>

Voting

46.2%

Percentage of female citizens 18 and older who reported voting in the 2010 congressional election. Forty-five percent of their male counterparts cast a ballot. Additionally, 66.6 percent of female citizens reported being registered to vote.
Source: Voting and Registration in the Election of November 2010
<http://www.census.gov/hhes/www/socdemo/voting/publications/p20/2010/tables.html>

Jobs

58.6%

Percentage of females 16 and older who participated in the labor force, representing about 71.9 million women, in 2010.
Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Current Population Survey: Annual Average 2010
<http://www.bls.gov/cps/demographics.htm#women>

40.6%

Percent of employed females 16 and older who worked in management, professional and related occupations, compared with 34.2 percent of employed males.
Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Current Population Survey: Annual Average 2010 <http://www.bls.gov/cps/demographics.htm#women>

Military

205,500

Total number of active duty women in the military, as of Sept. 30, 2010. Of that total, 38,700 women were officers, and 166,800 were enlisted.
Source: U.S. Department of Defense, Selected Manual Statistics, annual, and unpublished data

Marriage

64.9 million

Number of married women 18 and older (including those who were separated or had an absent spouse) in 2011.
Source: Families and Living Arrangements: 2011 <http://www.census.gov/population/www/socdemo/hh-fam/cps2011.html>

5 million

Number of stay-at-home mothers nationwide in 2010. Source: Families and Living Arrangements: 2010. <http://www.census.gov/newsroom/releases/archives/families_households/cb10-174.html>;
Table SHP-1 <http://www.census.gov/population/www/socdemo/hh-fam.html>

Following is a list of observances typically covered by the Census Bureau’s Facts for Features series:

  • African-American History Month (February)
  • Super Bowl
  • Valentine's Day (Feb. 14)
  • Women's History Month (March)
  • Irish-American Heritage Month (March)/
          St. Patrick's Day (March 17)
  • Earth Day (April 22)
  • Asian/Pacific American Heritage Month (May)
  • Older Americans Month (May)
  • Cinco de Mayo (May 5)
  • Mother's Day
  • Hurricane Season Begins (June 1)
  • Father's Day
  • The Fourth of July (July 4)
  • Anniversary of Americans With Disabilities Act (July 26)
  • Back to School (August)
  • Labor Day
  • Grandparents Day
  • Hispanic Heritage Month (Sept. 15-Oct. 15)
  • Unmarried and Single Americans Week
  • Halloween (Oct. 31)
  • American Indian/Alaska Native Heritage Month (November)
  • Veterans Day (Nov. 11)
  • Thanksgiving Day
  • The Holiday Season (December)

Editor’s note: The preceding data were collected from a variety of sources and may be subject to sampling variability and other sources of error. Facts for Features are customarily released about two months before an observance in order to accommodate magazine production timelines. Questions or comments should be directed to the Census Bureau’s Public Information Office: telephone: 301-763-3030; fax: 301-763-3762; or e-mail: <PIO@census.gov>.

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Source: U.S. Census Bureau | Public Information Office | PIO@census.gov | Last Revised: September 09, 2014