Demographics As of the census of 2000, there are 86,605 people, 34,614 households, and 22,083 families residing in the city. The population density is 1,082.5/km² (2,803.5/mi²). There are 35,387 housing units at an average density of 442.3/km² (1,145.5/mi²). The racial makeup of the city is 89.25% White, 2.01% African American, 0.32% Native American, 3.88% Asian, 0.03% Pacific Islander, 3.05% from other races, and 1.46% from two or more races. 6.22% of the population are Hispanic or Latino of any race.
There are 34,614 households out of which 31.6% have children under the age of 18 living with them, 49.3% are married couples living together, 10.4% have a female householder with no husband present, and 36.2% are non-families. 28.3% of all households are made up of individuals and 8.7% have someone living alone who is 65 years of age or older. The average household size is 2.46 and the average family size is 3.05.
In the city the population is spread out with 24.7% under the age of 18, 8.1% from 18 to 24, 33.5% from 25 to 44, 22.2% from 45 to 64, and 11.6% who are 65 years of age or older. The median age is 36 years. For every 100 females there are 97.6 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there are 95.2 males.
The median income for a household in the city is $51,969, and the median income for a family is $61,102. Males have a median income of $43,893 versus $29,171 for females. The per capita income for the city is $25,209. 6.8% of the population and 5.0% of families are below the poverty line. Out of the total people living in poverty, 8.7% are under the age of 18 and 6.4% are 65 or older.
Like many New England cities, Nashua grew because of textile mills using water power. The city was originally part of the Dunstable grant in Massachusetts until the state line was drawn in 1741, after which it was broken into smaller pieces that form the current towns and cities. Nashua is approximately in the center of the original 1673 Dunstable grant.
By 1836, Nashua Corp.[?] had built three cotton mills and was producing 9.3 million yards of cotton cloth annually on 710 looms. Six railroad lines crossed the city with 56 trains entering and departing daily before the Civil War.
What is now Nashua broke in two for a while, following a tax dispute between the town of Nashville north of the Nashua River, where most of the wealthier people lived, and town of Nashua south of the river. The two joined together and chartered the city in 1853.
The textile business started moving to the South during the Depression, with the last mill closing in 1949. Sanders Associates[?], a newly created defense firm that is now part of BAE Systems, moved into one of the closed mills and launched the city's rebirth. The arrival of Digital Equipment Corp. (now part of Hewlett-Packard) in the 1970s made the city part of the Boston-area high-tech corridor.