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March 27, 2012 | last updated March 27, 2012 10:21 am

Census: Maine most rural state

New data from the U.S. Census Bureau shows that Maine was the most rural state in 2010, with 61.3% of its population living in rural areas – the highest rate in the country.

The Census Bureau deems areas with at least 2,500 people as urban clusters, and areas with fewer than 2,500 people rural, according to the Bangor Daily News. In the 2010 census, Maine beat out Vermont, where 61.1% of residents live in rural areas, as the most rural state. Between 2000 and 2010, the number of Mainers living in rural areas increased from 59.8% to 61.3%, going against the national trend.

Maine's most rural counties are Piscataquis and Lincoln, where 100% of the population is considered to be in a rural area. Maine has three urbanized areas – Portland, Bangor and Lewiston – which have more than 50,000 people.

Maine's rural residents

Total county
population, 2010
% pop. in
rural areas
Lincoln 34,457 100%
Piscataquis 17,535 100%
Washington 32,856 92.4%
Waldo 38,786 91.3%
Hancock 54,418 90.1%
Oxford 57,833 83.1%
Franklin 30,768 83.0%
Somerset 52,228 80.5%
Aroostook 71,870 80.3%
Knox 39,736 67.9%
Kennebec 122,151 62.8%
Sagadahoc 35,293 61.7%
Penobscot 153,923 57.7%
York 197,131 56.8%
Androscoggin 107,702 43.4%
Cumberland 281,674 36.1%
MAINE 1,328,361 61.3%

Source: U.S. Census Bureau

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