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ERS has been a source of major land use estimates in the United States for over 50 years, and the related U.S. cropland used for crops series (Summary table 3 below) dates back to 1910 and is updated annually. The Major Land Uses (MLU) series is the longest running, most comprehensive accounting of all major uses of public and private land in the United States. The series was started in 1945, and has since been published about every 5 years, coinciding with the Census of Agriculture. See the latest report in the series, Major Uses of Land in the United States, 2007.

Data from all 14 Major Land Uses reports have been combined into a set of files showing major land use estimates by region and State from 1945 to 2007. Alaska and Hawaii were added in 1959, when they achieved Statehood. Since Alaska contains such vast acreage, 50-State totals in all categories prior to 1959 may appear to change precipitously.

For citations for previous MLU reports and sources for the 2007 data update, see reference citations. See the glossary for detailed definitions of major land uses and terms.

Data Set   
DownloadsLast UpdatedNext Update
Total landBack to top
Total land, 1945-2007, by State: The sum of cropland, pasture/range, forest-use land, special uses, urban area, and other landDownload as Excel12/19/20111/2/2017
CroplandBack to top
Cropland, 1945-2007, by State: The sum of cropland used for crops, cropland idled, and cropland used for pasture.Download as Excel12/19/20111/2/2017
Cropland componentsBack to top
Cropland used for crops, 1945-2007, by State: Cropland harvested, crop failure, and cultivated summer fallow.Download as Excel12/19/20111/2/2017
Cropland used for pasture, 1945-2007, by State: Pasture considered to be in long-term crop rotation. Includes some land used for pasture that could have been cropped without additional improvement.Download as Excel12/19/20111/2/2017
Cropland idled, 1945-2007, by State: Land completely idled and lands seeded to soil improvement crops but not harvested or pastured.Download as Excel12/19/20111/2/2017
Grassland pasture and rangeBack to top
Grassland pasture and range, 1945-2007, by State: Grassland and other nonforested pasture and range in farms plus estimates of open or nonforested grazing lands not in farms. Does not include cropland used for pasture or forest land grazed. Download as Excel12/19/20111/2/2017
Forest-use landBack to top
Total forest-use land, 1945-2007, by State: Forest-use land grazed and forest-use land not grazed. Download as Excel12/19/20111/2/2017
Forest-use land componentsBack to top
Forest-use land grazed, 1945-2007, by State: Woodland grazed in farms plus estimates of forested grazing land not in farms. Download as Excel12/19/20111/2/2017
Forest-use not grazed, 1945-2007, by State: Total forest-use land minus forest-use land grazed. Download as Excel12/19/20111/2/2017
Special usesBack to top
Total special uses, 1945-2007, by State: Rural transportation, rural parks and wildlife, defense and industrial, plus miscellaneous farm and other special uses. Download as Excel12/19/20111/2/2017
Special use componentsBack to top
Rural transportation, 1945-2007, by State: Highways, roads, and railroad rights-of-way, plus airport facilities outside of urban areas.Download as Excel12/19/20111/2/2017
Rural parks and wildlife areas, 1945-2007, by State: Federal and State parks, wilderness areas, and wildlife refuges. Download as Excel12/19/20111/2/2017
Defense and industrial areas, 1945-2007, by State: Land owned by Department of Defense and Department of Energy and used for airfields, research and development, housing, and miscellaneous military uses.Download as Excel12/19/20111/2/2017
Miscellaneous farmland, 1945-2007, by State: Farmsteads, farm roads, and lanes plus other miscellaneous farmland.Download as Excel12/19/20111/2/2017
Urban areaBack to top
Urban area, 1945-2007, by State: Densely-populated areas with at least 50,000 people (urbanized areas) and densely-populated areas with 2,500 to 50,000 people (urban clusters).Download as Excel12/19/20111/2/2017
Other or miscellaneous land usesBack to top
All other land uses, 1945-2007, by State: Unclassified uses such as marshes, swamps, bare rock, deserts, tundra plus other uses not estimated, classified, or inventoried. Download as Excel12/19/20111/2/2017
Summary tablesBack to top
Summary table 1: Major uses of land, by region, State, and United States, 2007Download as Excel12/19/20111/2/2017
Summary table 2: Major uses of cropland, by region, State, and United States, 2007Download as Excel12/19/20111/2/2017
Summary table 3: Cropland used for crops: cropland harvested (including double cropped), crop failure, and cultivated summer fallow for the United States, annual, 1910-2015Download as Excel3/25/20163/31/2017
Summary table 4: Total grazing land, by region, State, and United States, 2007Download as Excel12/19/20111/2/2017
Summary table 5: Special uses of land, by region State, and United States, 2007Download as Excel12/19/20111/2/2017

Last updated: Tuesday, May 17, 2016

For more information contact: Daniel Bigelow