This Has Been Named the Poorest City in the Poorest State

In 2019, the median household income in the United States hit its highest level since records began decades ago. However, income distribution across the country is unequal. In reality, income inequality has reached its peak in almost 50 years, with the top 20% of families in the United States obtaining 52% of total income in 2018.

This economic gap is not limited to specific areas of the country. Each of the lower 48 states has at least one significant city with a median household income lower than the national average.

24/7 Wall St. used data from the Census Bureau’s 2019 American Community Survey (ACS) to identify America’s poorest cities in each state. They looked at all 621 cities, towns, villages, municipalities, and census-designated areas in the United States that had data available. Vermont, West Virginia, and Wyoming have no cities covered in the most recent Census release, so they were removed from the analysis.

The ACS also provided data on median house value, the percentage of adults aged 25 and older with at least a bachelor’s degree, and unemployment rates.

The COVID-19 outbreak is believed to have exacerbated these communities’ economic struggles in recent months. The economic slump has disproportionately harmed the lowest income, who are losing jobs at a considerably faster pace than higher-earning people. As a result, a number of communities reported unemployment rates of more than 15%, if not 20%, compared to the national estimate of 10.2% that month.

The vast majority of cities ranked as the poorest in their state have relatively low proportions of adult residents with college degrees as compared to the state and country as a whole. College-educated persons make greater income and are less likely to be unemployed than non-college graduates.

Gulfport, Mississippi, is the poorest city in the poorest state.

This Has Been Named the Poorest City in the Poorest State

> The median household income is $36,013 (state: $45,792).

> Poverty rate: 30.7% (state: 19.6%).

> Median house value: $123,800 (state: $128,200).

> Adults holding a bachelor’s degree: 20.7% (state: 22.3%)

> Unemployment rate in 2019: 10.6% (state: 6.6%)

> Population: 71,701

Gulfport is the poorest city in one of the worst states (the absolute poorest, according to ACS statistics). Most Mississippi households make less than $46,000 per year, while the majority of households earn more than $65,000 per year. In addition, the national poverty rate of 12.3% is significantly lower than Mississippi’s 19.6% and Gulfport’s 30.7%.

Income typically rises with educational attainment. In Gulfport, only 20.7% of adults hold a bachelor’s degree or more, compared to 22.3% in Mississippi and 33.1% nationally.

NOTE: This article is based on a survey taken in 2021.


Income inequality in the United States has surged, reaching its highest point in almost 50 years. Gulfport, Mississippi, stands out as the poorest city in the poorest state, exemplifying the economic disparities. The COVID-19 pandemic has further strained these communities, emphasizing the urgent need to address educational and economic challenges to reduce inequality.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *