Special Report

The Most Commonly Spoken Foreign Language in Each State

Source: Bkamprath / Getty Images

26. Montana
> Most popular language: German
> Residents who speak German at home: 7,379
> German-speaking population: 0.7%

German speakers from Russia moved to the eastern part of Montana in the early 20th century along railroad towns like Billings and Missoula.

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27. Nebraska
> Most popular language: Vietnamese
> Residents who speak Vietnamese at home: 7,846
> Vietnamese-speaking population: 0.4%

Of the 1.9 million people living in Nebraska, nearly 8,000 speak the language, or about 0.4% of the population.

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28. Nevada
> Most popular language: Tagalog
> Residents who speak Tagalog at home: 62,676
> Tagalog-speaking population: 2.2%

California and Nevada are the only two states where the most common foreign spoken language, not including Spanish, is Tagalog. Of the 2.9 million residents in Nevada, about 63,000 speak Tagalog, one of the languages spoken in the Philippines.

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29. New Hampshire
> Most popular language: French
> Residents who speak French at home: 19,439
> French-speaking population: 1.5%

French is the leading foreign language, after Spanish, in New Hampshire, although the difference is not great. Just 2.1% of state residents speak Spanish, while 1.5% speak French. New Hampshire is one of four New England states that border Quebec, Canada’s French-speaking province.

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30. New Jersey
> Most popular language: Chinese
> Residents who speak Chinese at home: 86,120
> Chinese-speaking population: 1.0%

After Spanish, the next most commonly spoken foreign language in New Jersey, the most densely populated state, is Chinese. The Chinese first came to New Jersey in 1870, settling in Belleville.

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