Every state has ghost towns. Eastern and Midwestern States
are no exception. At one time or another you may have driven your car
right by a ghost town, not aware of it. If you are a hiker, backpacker, or
a hunter, you may have walked past or through a
ghost town not knowing one
When people hear the words "ghost town”, they associate the
term with the old, abandoned towns of the Western frontier. Many of those
settlements are still standing, but in the Eastern states, the majority of
old towns from the 1800’s to the early part of the 1900’s are no longer
visible. And it is because they are no longer visible, that makes them
Another reason why people are not
aware that ghost towns
exist in the east is because historians and writers have overlooked them.
History writers never took the time to
research the ghost towns of Middle America and the Eastern states.
Instead, there has always been the fascination with the ghost towns of the
Western states. Most books or stories having to do with the "gold rush”
will probably mention a Western town that once thrived; yet today it is a
ghost town. Those stories have kept alive the interest about the Western
The excitement that surrounds the
ghost towns in the Midwest and the East, becomes even more interesting,
because they are more difficult to locate. And the difficulty of locating
these ghost towns makes them more of a mystery.
My travels as a treasure hunter have
taken me to many Eastern ghost towns. I have hiked through miles of brush,
crossed hundreds of streams and rivers and climbed steep ravines in search
for the old towns of the east.
Anyone who is interested in
American History should take the time to research and to explore the settlements
that once populated our rural areas. It’s a great adventure and an
interesting way to spend time outdoors.
Cellar Holes - In the Eastern
and Midwestern States, most of the
ghost towns are nothing more than a
hole in the ground. The holes are cellar holes. They are what’s left of
the houses that once sat on top of them.
Searching for cellar holes or
ghost towns is an exciting adventure that can lead to some interesting
experiences and treasures. Many times, in the areas surrounding the ghost towns, are pieces of history, lying on the ground, untouched for hundreds
of years. Old bottles and pottery shards often lay scattered. I also use a
metal detector to search for relics lost or buried by the past
The First Pioneers -
The first pioneers were a hardy bunch. They had to deal
with harsh winter months and hot, humid summers. In addition wild animals
and infectious diseases were a constant problem. Of course, there was no
running water or electricity either. Everything was done by hand,
including digging the cellars for the homes.
Nor was raising a family easy. Many
young babies and children died of disease. This is confirmed by the fact
that as I locate old cellar holes, I often stumble upon an old tombstone
erected on the property by the family, and often the grave is the burial
site of a young child. I have a lot of respect for those
How To Find Eastern Ghost Towns -
Ghost towns existed as a small town or village.
They were probably the first settlement of an area. Today they are holes
in the ground, covered and hidden by hundreds of years of vegetation.
Time, weather and man, have all played their parts in the ruins of the old
towns of the Eastern and Midwestern States.
Start by browsing used bookstores.
Look for old books in the local history sections. Oftentimes by reading
through an old book about an area, you can gather information about an old