These Are The 10 Most Miserable Cities In West Virginia

We used science and data to determine which places in West Virginia are the unhappiest of all.

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Do you live in one of the most miserable places in West Virginia?

According to a Harris Poll taken in October of 2015, only a third of Americans say they are truly happy. That’s too bad, considering that Americans – especially folks in West Virginia – don’t really have it too bad, in the grand scheme of things.

But, we were curious – which West Virginia cities might be the most miserable? We’re about to find out, using science and data.

After analyzing the largest cities, we sadly present the most miserable cities in the Mountain State:

  1. Martinsburg (Photos)
  2. Wayne
  3. Keyser (Photos)
  4. Ripley
  5. Grafton (Photos)
  6. Huntington (Photos)
  7. Weston
  8. Princeton (Photos)
  9. Williamson
  10. Spencer

Read on below to see how we crunched the numbers and how your town ranked. If you have a smile on your face, you probably don’t live in one of these cities.

Oh, and by the way, Bethlehem is the happiest place in West Virginia.

Or check out the Most Miserable Cities In America.

If you’re looking for something more positive, check out the best states in America or the best places to live in America.


How We Measured The Most Miserable Cities In West Virginia

In order to rank the unhappiest places in West Virginia, we had to determine what criteria makes people happy. It isn’t a stretch to assume that happy people earn great salaries, are relatively stress free, and have a stable home life.

So we went to the Census’s American Community Survey 2010-2014 report for the criteria, flipped the list, and it spit out the answer. Like magic.

We threw a lot of criteria at this one in order to get the best, most complete results possible:

  • Percentage of residents with a college degree
  • Average commute times
  • Unemployment rates
  • Cost of living
  • % of married couples
  • % of home owners
  • Poverty rate

After we decided on the criteria, we gathered the data for the 108 places in West Virginia with over 2,000 people.

We then ranked each place from one to 50 for each of the seven criteria with a score of one being the most miserable (Any ties were given to the larger place).

Next, we averaged the seven rankings into a Miserable Index for each place with the lowest overall Miserable Index ‘earning’ the title ‘Most Miserable City In West Virginia’.

If you’d like to see the complete list of states, most miserable to happiest, scroll to the bottom of this post to see the unabridged chart.


1. Martinsburg

Martinsburg, West Virginia

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 17,508
People Who Own Their Home: 44.35%
Married Adults: 40.44%

2. Wayne

Wayne, West Virginia

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 2,032
People Who Own Their Home: 47.44%
Married Adults: 40.56%

3. Keyser

Keyser, West Virginia

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 5,350
People Who Own Their Home: 40.92%
Married Adults: 28.68%

4. Ripley

Ripley, West Virginia

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 3,259
People Who Own Their Home: 54.86%
Married Adults: 38.04%

5. Grafton

Grafton, West Virginia

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 5,179
People Who Own Their Home: 61.62%
Married Adults: 35.3%

6. Huntington

Huntington, West Virginia

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 49,053
People Who Own Their Home: 43.57%
Married Adults: 34.03%

7. Weston

Weston, West Virginia

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 4,088
People Who Own Their Home: 48.8%
Married Adults: 41.45%

8. Princeton

Princeton, West Virginia

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 6,387
People Who Own Their Home: 50.45%
Married Adults: 40.97%

9. Williamson

Williamson, West Virginia

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 3,118
People Who Own Their Home: 42.19%
Married Adults: 40.34%

10. Spencer

Spencer, West Virginia

Source: Wikipedia

Population: 2,303
People Who Own Their Home: 44.84%
Married Adults: 46.06%

There You Have It

Like we said earlier, trying to determine the most miserable cities in {state} is usually a subjective matter. But if you’re analyzing cities where people are not stable, where you’re stuck in traffic, and no one spent the time to go to college, then this is an accurate list.

If you’re curious enough, here are the happiest cities in {state}, according to science:
For more West Virginia reading , check out:

Detailed List Of Miserable Places In West Virginia

City Rank People Who Own Their Home
Martinsburg 1 44.35%
Wayne 2 47.44%
Keyser 3 40.92%
Ripley 4 54.86%
Grafton 5 61.62%
Huntington 6 43.57%
Weston 7 48.8%
Princeton 8 50.45%
Williamson 9 42.19%
Spencer 10 44.84%
White Sulphur Springs 11 47.86%
Morgantown 12 33.86%
Buckhannon 13 49.65%
Petersburg 14 44.1%
Beckley 15 47.68%
Parkersburg 16 52.43%
Dunbar 17 55.59%
Elkins 18 53.81%
Moundsville 19 60.53%
Clarksburg 20 55.19%
Charles Town 21 48.57%
Oak Hill 22 61.31%
Fairmont 23 57.71%
Wheeling 24 53.48%
Milton 25 55.0%
Point Pleasant 26 56.84%
Lewisburg 27 55.88%
Charleston 28 53.03%
Cross Lanes 29 63.3%
Weirton 30 63.04%
Fayetteville 31 76.16%
Madison 32 59.86%
Harrisville 33 61.18%
Bluefield 34 54.94%
Inwood 35 78.04%
New Martinsville 36 63.0%
Brookhaven 37 71.4%
Chester 38 54.1%
Sissonville 39 85.26%
Pea Ridge 40 52.09%
Vienna 41 70.29%
South Charleston 42 63.86%
Williamstown 43 70.0%
Winfield 44 78.12%
Nitro 45 61.93%
Hurricane 46 68.71%
Teays Valley 47 76.24%
Bridgeport 48 72.66%
Cheat Lake 49 72.31%
Bethlehem 50 79.89%

About Nick Johnson

Nick Johnson earned his masters in Business Administration from the Drucker School At Claremont Graduate University. He has written for 39 publications across the country and ran the media relations department at Movoto, a real estate portal based in San Francisco. He has been featured in over 500 publications as an expert in real estate and as an authority on real estate trends.

Nick's the creator of the HomeSnacks YouTube channel that now has over 260,000 subscribers and is an excellent source to learn about different parts of the country.