Check out these top 10 abandoned cities in America! From haunted ghost towns to mysterious and creepy deserted places, these cities are absolutely bizarre!
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10. Virginia City & Nevada City in Montana
Virginia city and Nevada city are about a mile apart from each other, along the Alder Gulch in Montana. They are at the site of one of the most valuable deposits of gold that have been located in the Rocky mountains, with an estimated one hundred million dollars worth having been found throughout the 18th and 19th centuries. In the first three years alone, about thirty million dollars worth of gold was recovered, which made the two cities popular places for gold seekers.
When the gold ran out, however, people left- and there was only enough wealth to just about keep Virginia City running, with no chance of upgrading the infrastructure. Today, it is still the way it was then. A ghost town, a frozen reminder of the Old West. In a turnaround of fortune, it’s now a popular tourist destination where you can go to experience the thrill of the gold rush, albeit without any gold, for yourself.
9. Bodie, California
The Californian gold rush between 1877 and 1888 spawned its own series of towns full of gold seekers, with one of the largest being Bodie, in the eastern Sierra. In its heyday the town was home to more than 10,000 people; all reliant on the nearby treasures of which more than thirty five million dollars worth of gold and silver were found.
Of course, as happened with many places like this, when the gold became scarce the people began to move in search elsewhere. This soon left Bodie as an abandoned town, one that has been kept in a state of “arrested decay” for visitors to explore. The 170 wooden buildings haven’t been touched since they were abandoned, with bottles and desks still sat where they were left in the schoolhouse, saloon, church and barbershop.
8. Kennecott, Alaska
In 1900, copper had become a valuable commodity for the use in wiring as electricity became popular. Two prospectors found an area with the richest concentration of copper that had ever been found; the only problem being it was on a glacier in Alaska. Wealthy investors were brought in who provided the machinery and a railroad track and built a town called Kennecott. All they needed to do was hire a workforce, which they had to offer far higher salaries to, to make the job appealing.
By 1938, however, the mines had run dry. They were shut, along with the railroad, and Kennecott soon became a ghost town. It was later sold into private ownership, and then purchased by the park service in 1998, who have turned it into a National Historic landmark, and one of the most popular destinations in Alaska.
7. South Pass City, Wyoming
As a small gold rush town, South Pass city may seem no different to the others, but it was the site of two important historic events while the gold seekers were in town.
The city was founded in 1867 after Mormon prospectors found gold in the nearby Wind River mountains. Within a year more than 250 buildings had been built, with over 1,000 residents moving in. The half mile long main street featured hotels, restaurants, a bowling alley and dozens of saloons, but the success wasn’t to last long. After growing to around 3,000 inhabitants in 1868, the numbers began to dwindle by 1869 due to the small quantity of gold being found, and by 1872 there were only a few hundred people left.
During this successful time for the city, it also became the first place, in 1869, to introduce a women’s suffrage bill, which led to Wyoming being the first state where women could vote. Soon after that, Esther Hobart, a resident of the city, became the first woman in the country to hold a position in public office when she was appointed as the justice of the peace.
Despite all of this, South Pass city would eventually become a ghost town, with the last few people leaving for good in 1949. In 1966 it was bought from private landowners by the state of Wyoming as a present to its residents, and now is run as a tourist attraction.