Friday, May 27, 2011

27 May 1828: "Girls beyond the power of enumeration"

On this day in 1828, the Athenian newspaper published this bit of local demographic data:

This population estimate seems to be for within the city limits of Athens, which was only a few blocks of downtown and the streets around North Campus at the time. The U.S. Census total population count for Clarke County in 1830 was much higher, 10,176 people. According to the 2010 U. S. Census, Athens-Clarke County has 115,424 residents. 

The numbers of carriages was an indicator of wealth, as was, apparently, the number of marriageable widows in town. A more accurate indicator can be found in the county tax records, where from 1819 to 1829, tax revenue in Clarke County increased by nearly 35%.

The University of Georgia was referred to as "Franklin College" in its early years. In 1828, total student population was 105 young white men. Women would not be admitted as undergraduates for another 90 years; African-Americans not for another 133 years. Today, the number of students at UGA's Athens campus is nearly 34,000, with a ratio of women to men of 58% to 42%, still pretty good odds for most male students.

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