Population of Northern Ireland by gender 1821-2011

Prior to 1921, the six counties that make up modern-day Northern Ireland were a part of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland, and the separate state of Northern Ireland did not exist until after the partition of Ireland in 1921. From 1821 until 1841, both the male and female populations grew by 130,000 each, until the Great Famine of 1845 to 1849 caused a sharp decline in the population in the 1840s. This decline continued until 1891, and the male population of the six counties fell at a slightly higher rate than the female population. The number of men fell by 310,000 between 1841 and 1891, and the number of women fell by 300,000. From 1891 to 1937 growth remains quite low, particularly among women, and then from 1937 the growth rate increases again. There is one more decade where the population dropped, which coincides with the most violent period of the Northern Irish Troubles. This was in the 1970s, where the number of men and women fell by approximately 30,000 each.

Population of Northern Ireland from 1821 to 2011, by gender

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Release date

July 2019


Ireland, United Kingdom (Northern Ireland)

Survey time period

1821 to 2019

Supplementary notes

Please note the difference in intervals between certain years. Some data from the early 1900s came at irregular years due to Ireland's independence movement as well as international factors, such as WWII.
Release date is date of extraction.

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