Nepalese American

Nepalese American
Total population
59,490[1] As of 2010
Regions with significant populations
Related ethnic groups

Nepalese Americans or Nepali Americans are Americans whose ethnic origins lie fully or partially in the Asian nation of Nepal. The category also includes other Nepali language speaking people migrated from India, Bhutan or Myanmar. Their migration to the United States began in the 20th century, and they have been able to establish themselves in this new land. The history of immigration to America for Nepalese is short in comparison to other ethnic groups.

The words "Nepali" and "Nepalis" are more commonly used by Nepalese Americans and are gaining widespread popularity in English usage as opposed to Nepalese, which is an Anglicized version.


  • History 1
  • Communities in the United States 2
  • Bhutanese American (group of people of Nepali origin) 3
  • Cultural celebrations 4
  • Notable Americans of Nepali descent 5
  • See also 6
  • References 7
  • External links 8


Nepalese Americans seem to have begun migrating to the United States from early 20th century. The first Nepalese to enter the United States were classified as "other Asian". Immigration records show that between 1881 and 1890 1,910 "other Asians" were admitted to the United States. However, Nepal did not open its borders until 1950, and most Nepalis who left the country during that time primarily went to India to study. Nepalese Americans were first classified as a separate ethnic group in 1974, when 56 Nepalese had immigrated to the United States. The number of immigrants from Nepal remained below 100 per year through 1992.[5]

According to the 1990 U.S. Census, there were 2,616 Americans with Nepalese ancestry. Fewer than 100 Nepalese immigrants become U.S. citizens each year, but the number of Nepalese who become legal residents has grown steadily from 78 in 1987 to 431 in 1996. The Nepalese community experienced a significant growth in population during the 2000s. The poor political and economic conditions caused by the Nepalese Civil War markedly increased emigration from Nepal. Significant communities of Nepalese Americans exist in large metropolitan areas such as New York City, Boston, Chicago, Denver, Gainesville, Florida, Portland, Oregon, and Saint Paul, Minnesota. Sizable numbers also live in various cities of California, such as Artesia (1.2% Nepalese American) and Sonoma (0.6%).[3][6][7]

Communities in the United States

As of 2010, the largest communities of Nepalese were in the following cities:[8]

Bhutanese American (group of people of Nepali origin)

According to the Bhutan New Service 75,000 exiled Bhutanese refugee have been resettled in USA (As per the date of April 8, 2014) and many more Bhutanese refugee are resettling in United State of America continuously. Bhutanese refugees are group of people of Nepali origin, including some Kirat, Tamang, and Gurung peoples (heterogeneous ethnic Nepalese population of Bhutan). Ethnic Nepalese are also known as “Lhotshampa, or Lhotsampa, (Nepali : ल्होत्साम्पा) in Bhutan, which mean “Southerner “in Dzongkha (national language of Bhutan)

Since 1990, more than 105,000 Bhutanese refugee have been temporarily settled in refugee camps in the eastern part of Nepal. They were expelled from Bhutan and temporarily settled in various refugee camps in Nepal. This was because, between the late 80s and early 90s, thousands of Bhutanese were driven out of Bhutan, as they were considered by the government of his country as "illegal immigrants" because they did not share the Tibetan origin majority of the population of country. Despite this, however, this Bhutanese came from families who had been living in Bhutan for more of two centuries. The objective of his government was to maintain the Tibetan ethnic purity of most of the population. Thus, since 1990, more than 105,000 ethnically Nepali Bhutanese refugees temporarily migrated to neighboring Nepal, from where their ancestors came, establishing in refugee camps in the east of the country. However, after 15 years living in exile in the neighboring country, many of them have migrated to the U.S (75,000), Canada (5,673), Australia (4,734), Denmark (759), The Netherlands (326), New Zealand (856), Norway (550) and the United Kingdom (358). Since 2008, Bhutanese refugees starting to resettle in different states of United States.[9][10][11]

Cultural celebrations

From the mid-1980s, the Nepalese community in the United States began to develop a series of social, cultural and charitable networks, which include the celebration of certain religious and cultural moments as Dasain, Tihar, and the Nepali New Year. They also participated in local cultural events such as Pacific Rogers and Park Fest interfaith community festivals.[12]

Notable Americans of Nepali descent

See also


  2. ^ a b "Yearbook of Immigration Statistics: 2010 Supplemental Table 2". U.S. Department of Homeland Security. Retrieved 2011-07-03. 
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h "PCT1: Total Population".  
  4. ^ Dhungel, Ramesh K. (1999). "Nepalese Immigrants in the United States of America". Contributions to Nepalese Studies (CNAS/TU) 26 (1): 119–134. Retrieved 30 April 2013. 
  5. ^ Miller, Olivia. "Nepalese Americans". Gale Encyclopedia of Multicultural America. Gale. 
  6. ^
  7. ^ Moore, Derek. Sonoma grows more diverse, The Press Democrat, March 25, 2011.
  8. ^ "PCT1: TOTAL POPULATION". factfinder2.census,gov. 2010 Census. Retrieved 3 June 2014. 
  9. ^ CNN
  10. ^ Bhutanese refugees
  11. ^ Bhutan New Service
  12. ^ Encyclopedia of Chicago: Nepalese. Wrote by Gregory Price Grieve.

External links

  • Embassy of Nepal in U.S.A.
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