The Frost Belt is a region of the United States generally considered to include New England, the Great Lakes Region, and much of the Midwest. The region is known for its cold, frost-producing winters and heavy snowfall.
For many years, the Frost Belt was the center of American economic activity and the most populous part of the United States. However, a shift away from domestic manufacturing beginning in the 1980s dealt a heavy blow to the region's economy. For most of the latter 20th century, the Frost Belt's population stagnated as Americans relocated to the more temperate Southern and Southwestern regions of the country. This shift was caused by economic factors as well as social developments; the desegregation of the South and easing of racial tensions in that area made it a more welcoming place for African-Americans and other minorities. The advent of air conditioning played a role too; the Southwest deserts, once almost uninhabitable for part of the year, became a more viable alternative to the colder climates of the northern United States. Census results for the past several decades have indicated a population shift from the Frost Belt to the Sun Belt.
- Deering, Joseph A. (March 2004). "Janet Rothenberg Pack, Growth and Convergence in Metropolitan America". Journal of Sociology and Social Welfare. Retrieved 2011-02-28.
- Dirk Johnson (1999-02-06). "In the Frost Belt, a Place in the Sun". The New York Times. Retrieved 2009-02-08.