For more than two decades, The Simpsons had one of the best kept secrets in all of TV history. It’s lasted longer than the mystery of who shot JR Ewing and any other mystery that you can think of. That mystery is this: What state do the Simpsons live in?
We definitely know what city the Simpsons call home. It’s Springfield. But since nearly every state in the United States has a town named Springfield, it was anybody’s guess as to which state they were in…until now. In a recent interview, the creator of the Simpsons – Matt Groening – admitted that he based the cartoon series on the town of Springfield in Oregon. And since he lived in Oregon, it makes perfect sense.
Throughout the years, Groening has made many jokes about the secrecy of the town. In one episode, Lisa points to the real Springfield on a map of the United States, but Bart’s head gets in the way and it’s impossible to see which state she is pointing to. In another episode, Marge is calling a company and the person on the other end of the line asks for her address. Marge says, “Springfield, O…Hiya, Helen,” further perpetuating the mystery.
And when the Simpsons Movie came out in 2007, Springfields from across the country competed to be the host city for the film’s premiere. Springfield, Vermont was the winner of the competition and it beat out 13 other Springfield cities. The competition involved creating and submitting a video that connected their Springfield to the Springfield in the long-running cartoon. You can find Simpons apparel here.
While laying claim to being the home of Springfield may bring a sense of pride, there are many episodes and storylines in The Simpsons in which you may not be proud to have this city in your state. For one thing, the mayor of the city seems to be a womanizing moron and completely corrupt. The school is also in horrible shape and the town dump has a constant fire. But the Springfield in Oregon has claimed the dubious honor in several ways, including having a Springfield Museum which exhibits a couch that looks like the one in the cartoon and a plaque that commemorates the release of the movie.
If you live in or near the Oregon Springfield, you may have picked up on some clues over the years. For one thing, there are characters named after some prominent streets in the Northwest District of Portland. Do the names Quimby, Lovejoy and Flanders sound familiar?
There are rumors, however, that Groening recanted what he said the next day. Some hardcore Simpsons fans say they remember an episode earlier in the show’s run where it was stated that the family lived in northern Kentucky. Did learning that Springfield was actually based in Oregon burst your Simpsons bubble? Or did you ever give it much thought?