These Are The Happiest Small Towns Across America

John McLean
by John McLean
Rankings - 2 years ago
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There’s a search that we are all on that dwarfs our job or career search — the search for happiness.

And as we all know, where we live and the job we have can all play a big part in our overall sense of contentment and happiness. For that reason, we took a dive into the most recent census data to help you identify which places in the United States have the biggest smile of them all.

On our happy data journey, we settled on seven criteria to help determine which U.S. places are the happiest. The criteria include things like having insurance, owning a home, and having a job.

As it turns out, life is all rainbows and butterflies in Frontenac, Missouri, the happiest place in America.

Don’t start feeling sad, there’s plenty of happy to go around as life is still pretty sweet in the following “Happiest Small Towns across America”:

  1. Frontenac, MO
  2. Oak Hill, TN
  3. Glendale, MO
  4. Grimes, IA
  5. New Albany, OH
  6. Sherman, IL
  7. Montana City, MT
  8. Medina, WA
  9. Forest, VA
  10. Sugarcreek, OH
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There’s Nothing We’d Rather Do Than Measure Happiness Across America

There’s a bunch of different studies out there that try to measure what makes people truly happy. And while we all know that money doesn’t buy happiness, it definitely removes anxieties and helps keep you healthy. It’s just that anything past about $70,000 a year doesn’t help as much.

So what else besides money contributes to your happiness? Well we think the following certainly do:

  • Being well educated (Population with at least a bachelor’s degree)
  • Having a job (As measured by the unemployment rate)
  • A short commute to work (God do people hate traffic)
  • Low cost of living
  • Having a family (Getting, and staying married, has a ton of happiness benefits, on average)
  • Owning a home (That’s a big plus)
  • And the poverty rate (Money definitely helps out)

That’s a ton of fun — and happiness — for the whole family, backed by science. The data all comes from the 2010-2014 American Community Survey.

After we decided on the criteria, we gathered the data for the a total of 3,580 places in the Unites States with populations between 2,000-10,000 people.

We then ranked each place from one to 3,580 for each of the seven criteria with a score of one being the happiest (Any ties were given to the larger place).

Next, we averaged the seven rankings into a Happiness Index for each place with the lowest overall Index being crowned “Happiest Small Town in America”.

Read on for more happy information about the top ten or skip to the end to see a list of how every place in the U.S. ranked. Our apologies to the City of Tea, South Dakota, which ranked 11th overall and just missed the list.

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1.Frontenac, MO

Frontenac, MO - Happiest Small Towns

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 3,512People Who Own Their Own Home: 80%
Married Adults: 66.3%

2. Oak Hill, TN

Oak Hill, TN - Happiest Small Towns

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 4,639People Who Own Their Own Home: 85.7%
Married Adults: 70.9%

3. Glendale, MO

Glendale, MO - Happiest Small Towns

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 5,926People Who Own Their Own Home: 94.2%
Married Adults: 68.2%

4. Grimes, IA

Grimes, IA - Happiest Small Towns

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 9,037People Who Own Their Own Home: 81.5%
Married Adults: 65.5%

5. New Albany, OH

New Albany, OH - Happiest Small Towns

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 8,169People Who Own Their Own Home: 87.1%
Married Adults: 72.8%

6. Sherman, IL

Sherman, IL - Happiest Small Towns

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 4,016People Who Own Their Own Home: 85%
Married Adults: 68.2%

7. Montana City, MT

Montana City, MT - Happiest Small Towns

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 2,683People Who Own Their Own Home: 90.8%
Married Adults: 69.3%

8. Medina, WA

Medina, WA - Happiest Small Towns

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 3,080People Who Own Their Own Home: 78.2%
Married Adults: 73.3%

9. Forest, VA

Forest, VA - Happiest Small Towns

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 9,999People Who Own Their Own Home: 79%
Married Adults: 61.7%

10. Sugarcreek, OH

Sugarcreek, OH - Happiest Small Towns

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 2,372People Who Own Their Own Home: 78.1%
Married Adults: 64.4%

100 Happiest Small Towns In America

Place Name Overall Rank Population Unemployment Rate Own Home
Frontenac, MO 1 3,512 2.6% 80.1%
Oak Hill, TN 2 4,639 3.0% 85.8%
Glendale, MO 3 5,926 2.0% 94.3%
Grimes, IA 4 9,037 2.2% 81.5%
New Albany, OH 5 8,169 5.2% 87.2%
Sherman, IL 6 4,016 6.8% 85.0%
Montana City, MT 7 2,683 2.4% 90.9%
Medina, WA 8 3,080 2.2% 78.3%
Forest, VA 9 9,999 3.9% 79.0%
Sugarcreek, OH 10 2,372 4.0% 78.1%
Tea, SD 11 4,226 1.5% 76.7%
Forsyth, IL 12 3,690 4.3% 89.9%
White Rock, NM 13 5,977 3.3% 84.6%
Rib Mountain, WI 14 5,512 5.7% 78.7%
Forest Hills, TN 15 4,911 2.8% 93.2%
Roanoke, IL 16 2,169 2.5% 74.4%
Harrisburg, SD 17 4,678 1.3% 81.7%
Winnebago, IL 18 3,203 3.6% 79.4%
Clarkston Heights-Vineland, WA 19 6,754 3.7% 85.6%
Hazen, ND 20 2,607 3.3% 74.9%
Sherwood, WI 21 2,770 2.0% 90.9%
Horace, ND 22 2,502 3.0% 93.9%
Garner, IA 23 3,107 2.2% 78.0%
Highland Heights, OH 24 8,324 4.7% 90.4%
Williamsburg, IA 25 3,105 3.1% 64.1%
Indian Hills, KY 26 2,904 4.2% 94.7%
Oak Ridge, NC 27 6,435 2.8% 89.5%
Hudson, IA 28 2,393 5.5% 79.9%
Dunlap, OH 29 2,227 4.2% 81.1%
Huntington Woods, MI 30 6,310 3.3% 92.9%
Providence, UT 31 7,026 5.1% 76.7%
Mission Hills, KS 32 3,555 2.6% 95.5%
Mahomet, IL 33 7,592 3.6% 78.5%
Elk Point, SD 34 2,075 2.5% 67.3%
Kasson, MN 35 6,017 2.5% 79.4%
Ranchettes, WY 36 6,028 .3% 90.4%
Casselton, ND 37 2,434 3.3% 71.0%
Orange City, IA 38 6,130 2.4% 76.3%
Ladue, MO 39 8,549 3.0% 92.2%
Algona, IA 40 5,513 1.6% 68.6%
Bar Nunn, WY 41 2,447 3.3% 93.4%
Eaton, CO 41 4,570 1.5% 77.6%
Plainview, MN 43 3,297 3.8% 84.9%
Blanchard, LA 44 2,911 1.8% 71.6%
Franklin, MI 45 3,106 4.3% 87.7%
Durant, IA 46 2,041 1.3% 70.5%
Colonial Pine Hills, SD 47 2,328 1.3% 91.1%
Rochester, IL 48 3,725 3.7% 86.9%
Rose Hill, KS 49 4,009 1.3% 78.1%
Newport, SC 50 3,724 4.2% 77.1%
Silver Lake, OH 51 2,520 4.7% 87.8%
Independence, OH 52 7,136 6.7% 90.9%
Des Peres, MO 53 8,443 4.1% 89.5%
Niskayuna, NY 54 5,129 4.0% 92.9%
Westvale, NY 55 5,111 4.5% 93.3%
Sherwood, OH 56 3,640 3.6% 90.6%
Holdrege, NE 57 5,506 1.4% 62.3%
Elm Grove, WI 58 5,985 4.1% 84.6%
Grant, MN 59 4,122 7.0% 96.7%
West Point, UT 60 9,863 3.7% 89.7%
Austin, AR 61 2,584 4.2% 77.3%
Bel Aire, KS 62 6,923 5.3% 82.6%
Harris Hill, NY 63 5,380 3.1% 79.0%
Bedford, NY 64 2,248 2.3% 80.5%
Monticello, IA 65 3,801 4.9% 70.9%
Waverly, NE 66 3,528 3.3% 74.6%
Perry, UT 67 4,529 2.2% 84.3%
Le Mars, IA 68 9,783 3.7% 71.2%
Beresford, SD 69 2,411 1.5% 71.1%
Mcfarland, WI 70 8,009 2.1% 72.4%
Cold Spring, KY 71 6,093 3.6% 83.0%
Canal Winchester, OH 72 7,334 3.8% 81.4%
Mulvane, KS 73 6,000 4.5% 77.2%
Colstrip, MT 74 2,243 5.5% 75.1%
Coldwater, OH 75 4,452 6.5% 72.8%
Gretna, NE 76 5,416 3.5% 64.9%
Monticello, IL 77 5,400 5.5% 72.1%
Lynchburg, MS 78 2,113 5.3% 87.3%
Basehor, KS 79 4,831 2.7% 76.6%
Battlefield, MO 80 5,759 4.3% 81.3%
Salem, AR 81 2,678 2.1% 89.1%
Madeira, OH 82 8,801 3.9% 85.0%
Edgewood, KY 83 8,665 5.1% 86.6%
Fairfax, IA 84 2,332 2.9% 93.4%
Batesville, IN 85 6,397 2.4% 62.7%
Signal Mountain, TN 86 8,416 3.1% 78.2%
Mount Zion, IL 87 5,830 6.8% 80.1%
Big Flats, NY 88 5,247 3.8% 77.2%
Zion, PA 89 2,171 5.4% 87.0%
Nibley, UT 90 5,866 4.6% 86.3%
Bainbridge, OH 91 2,728 3.9% 92.9%
Tipton, IA 92 3,207 3.2% 73.7%
Hurstbourne, KY 93 4,280 6.3% 72.0%
Kingsville, MD 94 4,479 3.1% 91.2%
Fulton, MD 95 2,114 3.8% 85.4%
Fulton, IL 96 3,538 5.8% 67.3%
Glendale, OH 97 2,219 5.0% 81.6%
Medina, MN 98 5,163 6.6% 92.4%
Scott City, KS 99 3,631 6.5% 72.4%
Pleasant View, UT 100 8,426 3.9% 87.7%