Black Muslim Population Numbers

By Tariq Nelson

According to Pew, Black American Muslims – which would include Nigerians, Senegalese and other African Muslims – make up ~1% of the total black population of America or what amounts to around 400,000.

I have heard I have always read that there are around 2 million black American Muslims which would be ~5% of the total population of blacks in this country. Thinking about it, I don’t think that number is correct.

The cities with the largest populations of blacks are:

New York, 2.1 million
Chicago, 1.4 million
Detroit 800,000
Philadelphia 700,000
Los Angeles 600,000

Given ~5% the black Muslim populations would be:

Chicago, 70,000
Detroit, 40,000
Philly, 35,000
LA, 30,000

The total in those cities would be around 275,000 black Muslims. Even if we TRIPLED those numbers and assume there are another 200,000 black Muslims in Atlanta (which would be ~5% of metro Atlanta’s total population), in order to arrive at 2 million we’d have to assume there are another 1 million black Muslims throughout America in places like New Orleans, Houston, Gary Indiana and other cities where the population of Muslims is not that high – much less with black Muslims. Personally, I don’t think that is the case.

The question is, where’d this number come from??

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  1. Sami says:

    I read a report from CAIR that said that there were 2 million african American Muslims. The reports however grouped together others which I believe majority of whom are muslims and if so then the CAIR report would be accurate.Here is an article that I did find with the same report:

  2. Sami says:

    according to this site there are between 2 and 7 million which would make african americans between 500,00- 2 million.

    My point is that the number is not exaggerated as you might have suggested because there is a great difference in the statistics of muslim population in every single nation and its not a surpise that its being done in the states.

  3. ConvertOf2Years says:

    JazakAllahu khair for posting that seattletimes article, Sami

  4. Abdurahman says:

    Asalamualaikum wrt wb,

    1% of the black population is Muslim?!? You have to be kidding me, most black people I know give me salaams. This is a huge understatement.

  5. Isn’t Philly around 10% Muslim in the innercity? That makes up a huge junk, no?

  6. Aboo Suhaylah Sa'eed al-Amreekee says:

    Salaamun ‘Alaykum,

    I don’t know where you got your numbers, but the Pew Research Center’s site lists the results of a survey they did last year and it shows 20% African American! Now admidtedly they claim there are only 2.35 Millions Muslims in the country, but that percentage seems much more realistic. We should also bear in mind that there’s a question of how you determine someone’s Muslim. If it’s anyone who claims it, then yes the numbers much larger. If it’s related to those with an established relationship with a religious organization, then no, the numbers will be smaller. I’ve included the link to one of the articles on Pew’s site and it contains a link for the entire report.

  7. osman says:

    Aboo Suhaylah, I think he means percent of blacks who are Muslim, and not percent of Muslims who are black.

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