Top 10 American Ghost Towns People Can't Get Enough Of   

This modern ghost town northwest of Philadelphia was formed by a mine fire that went very badly wrong. In 1962, an accident caused a fire to spread to the town's old underground mines, making sinkholes that spewed smoke and poisonous gases into the air.

1. Centralia, PA

The population of this gold mining town in Idaho's Challis National Forest peaked in 1896. A massive stamp mill, eight saloons, and a tiny Chinatown with laundry, shoe, and joss houses were there. Custer's mills closed 15 years after its boom, forcing its residents to leave their remote mountain home. 

2. Custer, ID

3. Bodie, CA

Near Yosemite, this Gold Rush town has remained eerily unchanged for almost 100 years. Although its population was declining at the start of the 20th century, a series of fires forced the remaining residents to leave, leaving the town almost unchanged. 

4. Kennecott, AK

A 60-mile dirt road leads to this preserved copper mining town in Alaska's Wrangell–St. Elias National Park, the nation's largest. Kennecott processed nearly $200,000,000 in copper between 1910 and 1940. After the mine was empty in 1938, Kennecott Copper Corporation abruptly left everything behind. 

5. Rhyolite, NV

The ghost town near Death Valley National Park was an ore mining hub. Rhyolite, a silica-rich volcanic rock with quartz, was found to contain gold in 1904, sparking 2,000 claims in a 30-mile area. Rhyolite soon had a hospital, opera house, and stock exchange.

6. Cahawba, AL

Cahawba, at the confluence of two rivers, was the state's first capital from 1820 to 1825. Post-war relocation of the legislature to Selma caused business, population, and flooding losses. Old Cahawba Archaeological Park honours Native Americans and freedmen and women.

7. Glenrio, NM/TX

For decades, Glenrio, on Route 66 between New Mexico and Texas, was a lively stop. The tiny town's petrol stations, diners, bars and motels were packed with Southwest road trippers from the 1940s to the 1960s. 

8. St Elmo, CO

Many US ghost towns were gold and silver mines like St. Elmo (Forrest City). The town's population declined after gold and silver ran out and disease spread. Chalk Creek Canyon trains ended in the 1920s. Visitors can stay in this quiet ghost town because a general store and Ghost Town Guest House are open.

9. Nelson, NV

Early Spanish settlers found silver in Nelson (then Eldorado) in the 1700s. It took another hundred years for Civil War deserters and other prospectors to find gold, causing Nevada's largest boom. When they did, disputes over the town's most notorious site, Techatticup Mine, often ended in murder.

10. Bannack, MT

This desolate Montana mining town is featured on the Travel Channel's Ghost Adventures. The Gold Rush-era city was rough (holdups, robberies, and murders were common on the route to Virginia City), and its sheriff was a rumoured outlaw. 

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