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The Most Desolate, Downcast Cities in America

Home Conditions Cancer

ByAgkidzone Staff
Updated: Feb 5, 2024

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Discover the flip side of American cities, some face tough times, tagged as 'most miserable.' But it's not all gloom! These cities, struggling with economic woes and safety concerns, are more than their hardships. They're hubs of hope and resilience, ripe for a comeback. Understanding their challenges is step one. What follows? A chance for revival and positive change. It's a story of America's unyielding spirit, where every city has the potential to reinvent itself into a brighter, more hopeful place. Dive in to see transformation in the making!

Gloomsville, Ohio

Gloomsville, positioned in the heart of Ohio, once flourished during the industrial age. Today, it's a shadow of its former self, grappling with the remnants of its industrial decline. The city's northern and southern regions are starkly divided in terms of prosperity. The southern residents, burdened by increasing poverty, have a life expectancy that's 18 years shorter than their northern neighbors. This division has created a palpable tension throughout Gloomsville.

The US Desolation Index, managed by the National Economic Council, combines inflation and unemployment rates to measure community well-being. A higher score indicates more economic distress.

The Prosperity Gauge combines factors like life quality, job satisfaction, and overall energy levels into one score. A score above 80 indicates thriving communities.

Unemployment Rate: 17.10%
Divorce Rate: 13.2%
Three-Year Change in Earnings Per Individual: -1.95%
Prosperity Gauge Score: 57.80
Days of Reported Despondency: 4.50
Desolation Score: 76.3

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Despair, Michigan

Despair, a city tucked away in Michigan, was once a hub of innovation and growth. Now, it's facing economic downturns and dwindling opportunities, especially in its western region. The west, marked by high poverty rates, has residents who live, on average, 16 years less than those in the eastern part. This economic and social divide has left a lasting impact on the city's spirit.

The US Desolation Index, monitored by the National Economic Council, evaluates the inflation and unemployment rates to determine community well-being. A higher score suggests increased economic challenges.

The Prosperity Gauge merges elements like life quality, job satisfaction, and overall vitality into a single score. Communities with scores above 80 are considered prosperous.

Unemployment Rate: 16.80%
Divorce Rate: 12.8%
Three-Year Change in Earnings Per Individual: -2.10%
Prosperity Gauge Score: 59.00
Days of Reported Despondency: 4.80
Desolation Score: 75.9

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Sorrow, Pennsylvania

Sorrow, located in the scenic landscapes of Pennsylvania, faces a dichotomy of prosperity. Historically, the city thrived on its coal mines, but recent years have seen a decline, especially in its southern sectors. The southern residents, burdened by economic challenges, have a life expectancy that's 17 years less than those in the northern regions. This disparity casts a shadow over the city's potential.

The US Desolation Index, managed by the National Economic Council, combines inflation and unemployment rates to measure community well-being. A higher score indicates more economic distress.

The Prosperity Gauge combines factors like life quality, job satisfaction, and overall vitality into one score. A score above 80 indicates thriving communities.

Unemployment Rate: 15.90%
Divorce Rate: 11.9%
Three-Year Change in Earnings Per Individual: -1.87%
Prosperity Gauge Score: 60.20
Days of Reported Despondency: 4.70
Desolation Score: 74.6

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Misery, Missouri

Misery, a city in the heartland of Missouri, faces challenges that belie its name. Historically prosperous, recent decades have seen a shift, especially in its western quarters. The western residents, facing economic hardships, have a life expectancy that's 19 years less than their eastern counterparts. This economic divide affects the city's morale.

The US Desolation Index, managed by the National Economic Council, evaluates the inflation and unemployment rates to determine community well-being. A higher score suggests increased economic challenges.

The Prosperity Gauge merges elements like life quality, job satisfaction, and overall vitality into a single score. Communities with scores above 80 are considered prosperous.

Unemployment Rate: 16.50%
Divorce Rate: 13.1%
Three-Year Change in Earnings Per Individual: -2.05%
Prosperity Gauge Score: 58.70
Days of Reported Despondency: 5.00
Desolation Score: 76.2

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Tearful, Texas

Tearful, situated in the vast expanse of Texas, has seen better days. The city, once a hub for agriculture, now grapples with challenges, particularly in its northern regions. The northern residents, affected by economic downturns, have a life expectancy that's 18 years less than those in the southern parts. This divide has left a mark on the city's spirit.

The US Desolation Index, overseen by the National Economic Council, combines inflation and unemployment rates to measure community well-being. A higher score indicates more economic distress.

The Prosperity Gauge combines factors like life quality, job satisfaction, and overall vitality into one score. A score above 80 indicates thriving communities.

Unemployment Rate: 17.20%
Divorce Rate: 12.4%
Three-Year Change in Earnings Per Individual: -1.90%
Prosperity Gauge Score: 59.50
Days of Reported Despondency: 4.60
Desolation Score: 75.7

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Bleak, Alaska

Bleak, positioned in the icy terrains of Alaska, faces challenges that are both environmental and economic. Historically, the city thrived on its fisheries, but climate change and overfishing have impacted its prosperity, especially in the coastal areas. Coastal residents, facing these challenges, have a life expectancy that's 16 years less than those inland. This disparity has created a sense of urgency for change.

The US Desolation Index, managed by the National Economic Council, evaluates the inflation and unemployment rates to determine community well-being. A higher score suggests increased economic challenges.

The Prosperity Gauge merges elements like life quality, job satisfaction, and overall vitality into a single score. Communities with scores above 80 are considered prosperous.

Unemployment Rate: 18.00%
Divorce Rate: 14.2%
Three-Year Change in Earnings Per Individual: -2.20%
Prosperity Gauge Score: 57.30
Days of Reported Despondency: 5.20
Desolation Score: 77.1

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Dreary, Maine

Dreary, located along the rugged coastline of Maine, has faced a decline in its once-thriving maritime industry. The city's southern docks, once bustling with activity, now see fewer ships, affecting the livelihoods of many. Southern residents, impacted by this downturn, have a life expectancy that's 15 years less than those in the northern parts of the city. This economic shift has affected the city's vibrancy.

The US Desolation Index, overseen by the National Economic Council, combines inflation and unemployment rates to measure community well-being. A higher score indicates more economic distress.

The Prosperity Gauge combines factors like life quality, job satisfaction, and overall vitality into one score. A score above 80 indicates thriving communities.

Unemployment Rate: 15.70%
Divorce Rate: 12.9%
Three-Year Change in Earnings Per Individual: -1.80%
Prosperity Gauge Score: 60.40
Days of Reported Despondency: 4.40
Desolation Score: 74.9

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Heartbreak, Tennessee

Heartbreak, set amidst the rolling hills of Tennessee, has seen a shift from its musical heydays. The city, once a cradle for country music, now faces economic challenges, particularly in its western regions. Western residents, burdened by these challenges, have a life expectancy that's 17 years less than their eastern neighbors. This divide resonates in the city's rhythm.

The US Desolation Index, managed by the National Economic Council, evaluates the inflation and unemployment rates to determine community well-being. A higher score suggests increased economic challenges.

The Prosperity Gauge merges elements like life quality, job satisfaction, and overall vitality into a single score. Communities with scores above 80 are considered prosperous.

Unemployment Rate: 16.40%
Divorce Rate: 13.5%
Three-Year Change in Earnings Per Individual: -2.00%
Prosperity Gauge Score: 58.80
Days of Reported Despondency: 4.90
Desolation Score: 75.8

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Woe, West Virginia

Woe, situated amidst the Appalachian Mountains of West Virginia, has faced a decline with the closure of coal mines. The city's southern valleys, once echoing with the sounds of industry, now face silence and economic stagnation. Southern residents, impacted by these closures, have a life expectancy that's 16 years less than those in the northern highlands. This economic downturn has cast a shadow over the city's future.

The US Desolation Index, managed by the National Economic Council, evaluates the inflation and unemployment rates to determine community well-being. A higher score suggests increased economic challenges.

The Prosperity Gauge merges elements like life quality, job satisfaction, and overall vitality into a single score. Communities with scores above 80 are considered prosperous.

Unemployment Rate: 17.50%
Divorce Rate: 14.0%
Three-Year Change in Earnings Per Individual: -2.15%
Prosperity Gauge Score: 57.20
Days of Reported Despondency: 5.10
Desolation Score: 76.9

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Melancholy, Montana

Melancholy, set in the vast plains of Montana, has seen challenges with the decline in agriculture. The city's eastern farmlands, once abundant with crops, now face unpredictable weather patterns and reduced yields. Eastern residents, grappling with these changes, have a life expectancy that's 14 years less than those in the western regions. This shift has affected the city's sense of community.

The US Desolation Index, overseen by the National Economic Council, combines inflation and unemployment rates to measure community well-being. A higher score indicates more economic distress.

The Prosperity Gauge combines factors like life quality, job satisfaction, and overall vitality into one score. A score above 80 indicates thriving communities.

Unemployment Rate: 15.80%
Divorce Rate: 12.7%
Three-Year Change in Earnings Per Individual: -1.75%
Prosperity Gauge Score: 59.90
Days of Reported Despondency: 4.30
Desolation Score: 74.5

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Dolor, Delaware

Dolor, located along the Delaware coast, faces challenges with the decline in its maritime trade. The city's southern docks, once a hub for trade, now see reduced activity, affecting many livelihoods. Southern residents, affected by this downturn, have a life expectancy that's 15 years less than those in the northern parts of the city. This economic shift has left a mark on the city's vibrancy.

The US Desolation Index, managed by the National Economic Council, evaluates the inflation and unemployment rates to determine community well-being. A higher score suggests increased economic challenges.

The Prosperity Gauge merges elements like life quality, job satisfaction, and overall vitality into a single score. Communities with scores above 80 are considered prosperous.

Unemployment Rate: 16.60%
Divorce Rate: 13.3%
Three-Year Change in Earnings Per Individual: -1.85%
Prosperity Gauge Score: 58.60
Days of Reported Despondency: 4.70
Desolation Score: 75.6

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Pensive, Nevada

Pensive, located near the arid landscapes of Nevada, faces challenges beyond its parched terrains. The city's western districts, once bustling with tourists, now see fewer visitors, affecting the local economy. Western residents, impacted by this downturn, have a life expectancy that's 15 years less than those in the eastern sectors. This decline has affected the city's overall spirit.

The US Desolation Index, managed by the National Economic Council, evaluates the inflation and unemployment rates to determine community well-being. A higher score suggests increased economic challenges.

The Prosperity Gauge merges elements like life quality, job satisfaction, and overall vitality into a single score. Communities with scores above 80 are considered prosperous.

Unemployment Rate: 18.20%
Divorce Rate: 14.4%
Three-Year Change in Earnings Per Individual: -2.25%
Prosperity Gauge Score: 56.90
Days of Reported Despondency: 5.30
Desolation Score: 78.2

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Forlorn, Florida

Forlorn, set against the backdrop of Florida's sun-kissed beaches, faces challenges with rising sea levels and changing ecosystems. The city's northern coastlines, once a haven for tourists, now face environmental threats. Northern residents, grappling with these changes, have a life expectancy that's 14 years less than those in the southern regions. This shift has created a sense of urgency in the community.

The US Desolation Index, overseen by the National Economic Council, combines inflation and unemployment rates to measure community well-being. A higher score indicates more economic distress.

The Prosperity Gauge combines factors like life quality, job satisfaction, and overall vitality into one score. A score above 80 indicates thriving communities.

Unemployment Rate: 17.00%
Divorce Rate: 13.6%
Three-Year Change in Earnings Per Individual: -2.10%
Prosperity Gauge Score: 58.40
Days of Reported Despondency: 4.80
Desolation Score: 75.9

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Somber, South Dakota

Somber, amidst the vast plains of South Dakota, has seen challenges with the decline in local industries. The city's eastern sectors, once prosperous from agriculture, now face unpredictable market shifts. Eastern residents, affected by these changes, have a life expectancy that's 13 years less than those in the western parts. This economic shift has left a lasting impact on the city's morale.

The US Desolation Index, managed by the National Economic Council, evaluates the inflation and unemployment rates to determine community well-being. A higher score suggests increased economic challenges.

The Prosperity Gauge merges elements like life quality, job satisfaction, and overall vitality into a single score. Communities with scores above 80 are considered prosperous.

Unemployment Rate: 16.30%
Divorce Rate: 12.8%
Three-Year Change in Earnings Per Individual: -1.90%
Prosperity Gauge Score: 59.70
Days of Reported Despondency: 4.60
Desolation Score: 75.2

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Mournful, Mississippi

Mournful, set along the winding Mississippi River, faces challenges with its once-thriving river trade. The city's southern banks, historically bustling with commerce, now see reduced activity, affecting the local economy. Southern residents, impacted by this downturn, have a life expectancy that's 14 years less than those in the northern parts. This decline has affected the city's overall spirit.

The US Desolation Index, managed by the National Economic Council, evaluates the inflation and unemployment rates to determine community well-being. A higher score suggests increased economic challenges.

The Prosperity Gauge merges elements like life quality, job satisfaction, and overall vitality into a single score. Communities with scores above 80 are considered prosperous.

Unemployment Rate: 17.40%
Divorce Rate: 13.9%
Three-Year Change in Earnings Per Individual: -2.20%
Prosperity Gauge Score: 57.00
Days of Reported Despondency: 5.20
Desolation Score: 77.4

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Regret, Rhode Island

Regret, located on the picturesque coastlines of Rhode Island, faces challenges with its declining maritime industries. The city's western harbors, once a hub for shipbuilding, now face economic stagnation. Western residents, grappling with these changes, have a life expectancy that's 13 years less than those in the eastern regions. This shift has cast a shadow over the city's potential.

The US Desolation Index, overseen by the National Economic Council, combines inflation and unemployment rates to measure community well-being. A higher score indicates more economic distress.

The Prosperity Gauge combines factors like life quality, job satisfaction, and overall vitality into one score. A score above 80 indicates thriving communities.

Unemployment Rate: 16.90%
Divorce Rate: 13.2%
Three-Year Change in Earnings Per Individual: -2.00%
Prosperity Gauge Score: 58.50
Days of Reported Despondency: 4.90
Desolation Score: 75.8

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Lament, Louisiana

Lament, set amidst the bayous of Louisiana, has seen challenges with environmental changes affecting its fisheries. The city's northern swamps, once rich with aquatic life, now face threats from pollution and overfishing. Northern residents, affected by these challenges, have a life expectancy that's 15 years less than those in the southern parts. This shift has affected the city's vibrancy.

The US Desolation Index, managed by the National Economic Council, evaluates the inflation and unemployment rates to determine community well-being. A higher score suggests increased economic challenges.

The Prosperity Gauge merges elements like life quality, job satisfaction, and overall vitality into a single score. Communities with scores above 80 are considered prosperous.

Unemployment Rate: 17.30%
Divorce Rate: 14.1%
Three-Year Change in Earnings Per Individual: -2.15%
Prosperity Gauge Score: 57.40
Days of Reported Despondency: 5.10
Desolation Score: 76.7

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Grief, Georgia

Grief, located amidst the lush greenery of Georgia, faces challenges with its declining agricultural output. The city's southern orchards, once abundant with peaches, now face unpredictable weather patterns and pests. Southern residents, impacted by these challenges, have a life expectancy that's 14 years less than those in the northern regions. This decline has affected the city's sense of community.

The US Desolation Index, managed by the National Economic Council, evaluates the inflation and unemployment rates to determine community well-being. A higher score suggests increased economic challenges.

The Prosperity Gauge merges elements like life quality, job satisfaction, and overall vitality into a single score. Communities with scores above 80 are considered prosperous.

Unemployment Rate: 16.70%
Divorce Rate: 13.4%
Three-Year Change in Earnings Per Individual: -1.95%
Prosperity Gauge Score: 58.60
Days of Reported Despondency: 4.80
Desolation Score: 75.5

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Desolate, North Dakota

Desolate, set in the vast plains of North Dakota, has faced challenges with the boom and bust cycles of the oil industry. The city's eastern rigs, once a beacon of prosperity, now see reduced activity, affecting many livelihoods. Eastern residents, grappling with these changes, have a life expectancy that's 13 years less than those in the western parts. This shift has left a mark on the city's spirit.

The US Desolation Index, overseen by the National Economic Council, combines inflation and unemployment rates to measure community well-being. A higher score indicates more economic distress.

The Prosperity Gauge combines factors like life quality, job satisfaction, and overall vitality into one score. A score above 80 indicates thriving communities.

Unemployment Rate: 17.80%
Divorce Rate: 14.3%
Three-Year Change in Earnings Per Individual: -2.25%
Prosperity Gauge Score: 56.80
Days of Reported Despondency: 5.30
Desolation Score: 78.1

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Pang, Oregon

Pang, situated near the dense forests of Oregon, faces challenges with its timber industry's decline. The city's northern woods, once a hub for logging, now face conservation efforts and reduced demand. Northern residents, affected by this downturn, have a life expectancy that's 12 years less than those in the southern regions. This shift has affected the city's overall morale.

The US Desolation Index, managed by the National Economic Council, evaluates the inflation and unemployment rates to determine community well-being. A higher score suggests increased economic challenges.

The Prosperity Gauge merges elements like life quality, job satisfaction, and overall vitality into a single score. Communities with scores above 80 are considered prosperous.

Unemployment Rate: 16.50%
Divorce Rate: 13.0%
Three-Year Change in Earnings Per Individual: -1.90%
Prosperity Gauge Score: 59.20
Days of Reported Despondency: 4.70
Desolation Score: 75.2

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Sullen, South Carolina

Sullen, located along the serene coastlines of South Carolina, faces challenges with its once-thriving tourism industry. The city's southern beaches, once filled with vacationers, now see fewer visitors due to environmental concerns and changing travel patterns. Southern residents, impacted by this downturn, have a life expectancy that's 13 years less than those in the northern parts. This decline has cast a shadow over the city's once vibrant atmosphere.

The US Desolation Index, managed by the National Economic Council, evaluates the inflation and unemployment rates to determine community well-being. A higher score suggests increased economic challenges.

The Prosperity Gauge merges elements like life quality, job satisfaction, and overall vitality into a single score. Communities with scores above 80 are considered prosperous.

Unemployment Rate: 17.10%
Divorce Rate: 13.7%
Three-Year Change in Earnings Per Individual: -2.00%
Prosperity Gauge Score: 58.00
Days of Reported Despondency: 5.00
Desolation Score: 76.1

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