For years, fans of The Simpsons have been wondering where in the world the Springfield in the animated series is located. Because there are so many Springfields in the US, folks have been speculating which city is the real hometown of the animated Simpson family. In a new interview with Matt Groening, we finally learn. After so many years of deliberately keeping the information quiet, Groening is ready for the world to know where, exactly, is the Springfield of The Simpsons.
“Springfield was named after Springfield, Oregon,” Groening tells the upcoming issue of Smithsonian magazine in an in-depth Q&A. “The only reason is that when I was a kid, the TV show Father Knows Best took place in the town of Springfield, and I was thrilled because I imagined that it was the town next to Portland, my hometown. When I grew up, I realized it was just a fictitious name. I also figured out that Springfield was one of the most common names for a city in the U.S. In anticipation of the success of the show, I thought, ‘This will be cool; everyone will think it’s their Springfield.’ And they do.” The interviewer, Claudia De La Roca, who’s worked on The Simpsons and Groening’s Futurama, then notes Groening has never revealed the town’s location before (though he has hinted at it). The writer-producer replies, “I don’t want to ruin it for people, you know? Whenever people say it’s Springfield, Ohio, or Springfield, Massachusetts, or Springfield, wherever, I always go, ‘Yup, that’s right.’”
In the many years that The Simpsons has been on the air, many jokes have been made teasing the true location of Springfield. At last, we know. Honestly, Springfield, Oregon never really felt to me like the actual location. I pictured Springfield being more middle America. Still, Matt Groening is the creator … the god of The Simpsons, if you will. If he says Springfield is in Oregon, who are we to argue? Now that the secret’s out, I wonder if we’ll be seeing characters wearing Birkenstock shoes from here on out?