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Paraguayan Americans (Spanish: paraguayo-americano, norteamericano de origen paraguayo or estadounidense de origen paraguayo) are Americans of Paraguayan descent.
The Paraguayan population in the United States at the 2010 Census was 24,933 . Paraguayans are the smallest Latino group in the United States. The Paraguayan population is concentrated mainly in Queens, NY, Westchester County, NY, and Somerset County, NJ. Additional areas of concentration include Miami-Dade County and Montgomery County, Maryland. The highest concentration of Paraguayans in the US reside in Somerset County, NJ.
The first Paraguayans emigrated between the years of 1841 and 1850. At that time, Paraguayans were not coming directly to the United States from Paraguay, but through other countries such as Brazil, Argentina, and Peru. The Paraguayan residents in the U.S. were included in the early records in the group of "other" South Americans. During those years, 3,579 "other" immigrants arrived. In 1979, close to 11,000 Paraguayans went to live in the United States, but the numbers declined rapidly. In 1982, 4,000 Paraguayans immigrated to the United States. The reasons of migration were varied, but many immigrants were young people that wanted study in American universities.
Additionally, some of the immigrants arrived for political persecutions or to escape civil riots. More women than men migrated to the United States, although the numerical difference was not significant, and most of them lacked jobs. In addition, many American marriages adopted Paraguayan infants. More than a thousand Paraguayan infants were adopted in this country. Of these, 254 were adopted in 1989, 405 in 1993 and 351 in 1995.
Paraguayan American women generally work in hotel housekeeping and in the agriculture (in California and Kansas). Paraguay and Kansas founded Partners of the Americas, a non-profit exchange program. This is because of the similarities between the two regions, as they both make a living from raising livestock and growing wheat, both are landlocked, and both are the same size and population.
Most of Paraguayan Americans spoke Spanish, Guarani (indigenous language of Paraguay) and English very well.
The large populations of Paraguayan Americans are in New York City, Miami, and Los Angeles. Paraguayan Americans also have population importance in Dallas and Atlanta. Many unskilled Paraguayan Americans have jobs in the service industry in urban zones such as Minneapolis, Chicago or states like New York and New Jersey.
The 10 states with the largest population of Paraguayans (Source: 2010 Census):
The largest population of Paraguayans are situated in the following areas (Source: Census 2010):
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The top 25 US communities with the highest populations of Paraguayans (Source: Census 2010)
US communities with the highest percentages of Paraguayans as a percent of total population (Source: Census 2010)
Paraguayans are more than 1% of the entire population in only five communities in the US. All of these communities are located in Somerset County, NJ.