Not quite Austin but well above Hartford, the political center of South Carolina just missed the top half in terms of preferred governmental hubs in which to live.

Columbia ranked 26th overall with a 52.81 state capital index, according to personal finance website WalletHub. The Midlands city placed 7th in quality of life. But a 29th place finish in affordability, 34th in education and health and 42nd in economic well-being markedly dragged down Columbia.

Texas capital Austin, which among other figures posted the lowest premature death rate, ranked 1st. Hartford, capital of Connecticut, ranked 50th while reporting the lowest living-adjusted median household income of $23,564 and steepest jobless rate of 8.9 percent.

WalletHub conducted the “in-depth analysis of 2016’s Best & Worst State Capitals” because just 17 governmental hubs are also the largest cities in their respective states and nearly one-fifth of American still prefer to live in smaller areas.

According to the online site, its analysts compared the 50 state capitals across 35 key indicators, “ranging from cost of living to K–12 school-system quality to number of attractions” in a bid to find the ideal city.

To see the full report, go to www.wallethub.com/edu/best-state-capitals/19030/.

Reach Jim Parker at 843-937-5542 or jparker@postandcourier.com.