Islam in the United States
Islam is the fourth-largest faith in the United States, after Christianity, Judaism and Buddhism. It was followed by 0.9% of the population in 2010, compared to 78.3% who follow Christianity, 16.4% unaffiliated, 1.8% Judaism and 1.2% Buddhism.American Muslims come from various backgrounds and, according to a 2009 Gallup poll, are one of the most racially diverse religious groups in the United States. Native-born American Muslims are mainly African Americans who make up about a quarter of the total Muslim population. Many of these have converted to Islam during the last seventy years. Conversion to Islam in large urban areas has also contributed to its growth over the years.While an estimated 10 percent of the slaves brought to colonial America from Africa arrived as Muslims, Islam was stringently suppressed on plantations. Prior to the late 19th century, most documented non-enslaved Muslims in North America were merchants, travelers, and sailors.From the 1880s to 1914, several thousand Muslims immigrated to the United States from the former territories of the Ottoman Empire and the former Mughal Empire. The Muslim population of the U.S. increased dramatically in the 20th century, with much of the growth driven by a comparatively high birth rate and immigrant communities of mainly Arab and South Asian descent. About 72% of American Muslims are immigrants or ""second generation"".In 2005, more people from Islamic countries became legal permanent United States residents — nearly 96,000 — than there had been in any other year in the previous two decades. In 2009, more than 115,000 Muslims became legal residents of the United States.