The travel website RoadSnacks.net is attempting to rank Illinois cities by their level of happiness, including the 10 most and 10 least happy cities in the Land of Lincoln.
The ratings were based on several factors including what percentages of adults are married, have a college degree, or own their own home, as well as things such as commute times, unemployment and poverty. The study included all Illinois cities with a population of more than 2,000.
According to the site, the most miserable city in Illinois is the Cook County village of Riverdale, where only 38.8% or residents are homeowners, and just 22.7% are married. The state’s largest city, Chicago, made the list as the 4th most miserable city, and Illinois’ Southernmost town, Cairo, ranked 10th on the unhappiness index.
The state’s happiest city? According to RoadSnacks, that honor goes to Forsyth, a small town with a population of 3,690 located in Macon County. According to the site, 89.9% of adults in Forsyth are married and 71.4% of them own their own home.
Illinois’ capital city, Springfield, ranked as either the 135th most miserable, or the 269th happiest, depending on your point of view. The capital’s neighbors may be smiling more, however, with bordering towns Sherman and Rochester coming in as the third and fourth happiest cities.
The secret to happiness? The website’s results seem to indicate a higher level of happiness in Central Illinois, with the top four towns located in Macon, Champaign, and Sangamon Counties, while the nine most miserable are all located in Cook County.