America remains a nation of small towns and villages and many of them, especially in the South, saw their populations grow between 2022 and 2023, a new report from the U.S. Census Bureau shows.

The report focuses on cities, as opposed to metro areas. By the Bureau's count, there are some 19,500 incorporated places in the U.S. Only 39% of the population lived in cities of 50,000 or more. Of the remainder, about 75% had fewer than 5,000 people in 2023, and nearly 33% had fewer than 500.

"Small towns in the Midwest and Northeast experienced lower rates of decline in 2023, decreasing by an average of 0.3% and 0.1%, respectively, compared to 0.4% and 0.2%, respectively, in 2022. Meanwhile, small towns in the West grew on average by 0.3% in 2023, a slower pace than its 0.5% growth rate in 2022. In contrast, small towns in the South grew by an average 0.6% in 2023, one-and-a-half times faster than the 0.4% growth in 2022," the Bureau reported.

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