This is the Poorest Town in Mississippi

Rosedale, Mississippi, stands as a stark embodiment of poverty in the United States. According to the latest data from the U.S. Census Bureau’s American Community Survey, Rosedale ranks as the poorest town in Mississippi, a state already grappling with significant economic challenges. This article delves into the harsh realities of life in Rosedale, underscoring the town’s struggles and the broader implications of poverty in America.

The Economic Landscape of Rosedale

Rosedale’s economic situation is alarming, with the typical household earning just $15,955 a year, a staggering 67.5% less than the statewide median income of $49,111​​. This income disparity highlights the depth of Rosedale’s financial struggles, placing it well below the poverty line. For context, the poverty threshold for a family of four in the United States is approximately $26,000 annually​​.

The local poverty rate in Rosedale is 52.7%, more than double the statewide rate of 19.4%​​. This high poverty rate reflects the numerous challenges residents face, including limited access to quality education, healthcare, and employment opportunities. The town’s demographic profile, based on the American Community Survey, paints a picture of a community in dire need of economic revitalization.

Factors Contributing to Rosedale’s Poverty

Several factors contribute to the high poverty levels in Rosedale. First, the town’s limited economic base offers few job opportunities, especially in high-paying sectors. The lack of employment options forces many residents to either accept low-wage jobs or face unemployment. Additionally, Rosedale’s educational attainment levels are lower compared to national averages, limiting residents’ ability to secure better-paying jobs.

The town’s geographical location also plays a role. Situated in a rural area, Rosedale lacks the economic dynamism found in more urbanized regions. This rural setting means fewer businesses, less investment, and limited access to resources that could spur economic growth.

The Broader Impact of Poverty

The situation in Rosedale is a microcosm of the broader issue of poverty in the United States. While the national poverty rate has decreased, with roughly 37 million people, or 11.4% of the population, living below the poverty line in 2019, small towns like Rosedale continue to struggle​​. The economic hardships faced by these communities are often exacerbated by factors such as inadequate federal and state assistance, systemic inequalities, and a lack of targeted poverty alleviation programs.

Moving Forward: Potential Solutions

Addressing the poverty crisis in Rosedale requires a multifaceted approach. Economic development initiatives that focus on job creation and skill development are crucial. Investment in education and vocational training programs can equip residents with the skills needed for better-paying jobs. Additionally, improving infrastructure and attracting new businesses could help stimulate the local economy.

Policymakers and community leaders must also focus on addressing the systemic issues that perpetuate poverty. This includes tackling inequalities in education, healthcare, and access to resources. Collaborative efforts between government, private sector, and non-profit organizations can lead to innovative solutions that address the unique challenges faced by towns like Rosedale.


Rosedale’s plight is a poignant reminder of the persistent issue of poverty in America. While national trends may show a decrease in poverty rates, towns like Rosedale tell a different story. It’s a story of struggle, resilience, and the need for concerted efforts to address the root causes of poverty. As a nation, there is a moral imperative to ensure that communities like Rosedale are not left behind in the pursuit of economic prosperity and equality.

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