Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Dorchester Demographics: A Look At Our Town By The Numbers

It has been a while since we examined the demographics of Dorchester, so today we are
doing exactly that.

In short, we can tell you this: girls outnumber the guys, and Dorchester's average age is considerable younger than that of the state, overall -- which is a good thing.

According to U.S. Census bureau statistics, Dorchester's population in 2012 fell to 594.  That's the first time in several decades that our community has fallen below the 600 mark.

Of the 594 residing in Dorchester, 45.7% (or 271) were male, while 54.3% (323) were female.

At the same time, Dorchester's population has become younger.  The median resident age here in Dorchester is 35.5 years, versus the much older median age statewide, which is 42.2 years.

Of the 235 households in Dorchester, 71.2% contain families. (No, dogs and cats don't count, and they still can't vote.)  That's higher than the rest of the state's households, of which 64.8% are family households. 

The average household size in Dorchester is 2.5 people, the same as the statewide average.

Fewer in Dorchester are "shacking up," since 5.6% of households in Dorchester are comprised of unmarried partners.  Statewide, the average is 6.0%.

The median household income in Dorchester in 2012 was $44,116 -- up from $34,000 in 2000.  That does fall a bit short of Nebraska's median household income of $50,723, but recall that Dorchester's median home price is roughly $45,000 less than the state's overal median home price.  In fact, according to the March 2012 cost of living index, Dorchester's cost of living is 75.9 on the index, which is much lower than the U.S. average of 100.

When examining the ethnic composition of Dorchester, here is the breakdown according to the Census:
  • White alone - 515 (87.9%)
  • Hispanic - 57 (9.7%)
  • Black alone - 6 (1.0%)
  • Two or more races - 6 (1.0%)
  • American Indian alone - 1 (0.2%)
  • Asian alone - 1 (0.2%)


  1. There have been some who commented on this post in Facebook, seeming to single out the Village Utilities as being on the high side. I think that, whether or not you feel they are high, you need to consider other factors. This is my Facebook post on that subject: Like anything else, the cost of your utilities varies, according to your usage. Some places are higher and some are lower. What you need to consider is the total costs and benefits of living here...more house for less money (buying or renting), quieter and safer neighborhoods, great school that most kids in town can walk to, nice park, recreational activities, nice churches, fairly close to local & regional employment, variety of local businesses (hopefully with more to come), large retailers within a reasonable distance. You cannot just say "boy the city utilities are high" and leave it at that! There is so much more to consider when you decide to call Dorchester your home. OK, I am done preaching.

  2. I agree with Don. The cost of living here is cheap, cheap, cheap. It is probably a bit of a shocker for those coming from Lincoln or other larger towns to see their first utility bill because electricity, sewer and water are all on one statement. Break it down, it's pretty reasonable.

    My one and only gripe is I wish we could do something about the neglected commercial and residential properties, but that will take a widespread effort, not just a town board or outside agency to get the job done. I have a feeling that if neglected properties were to go up for sale, there are some interested buyers in town who would turn them into something the whole town could be proud of.


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