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Throughout history, there have been stories about pioneers traveling to find their fortune in America. Upon finding a bountiful bounty, people flock to boomtowns, including churches, brothels, and other establishments. However, no sooner would a town have been established than natural or manmade disasters would destroy it, or its inhabitants would be forced to relocate.

Once-prosperous ghost towns are now left to decay and dust. Many of these still exist in the US, and these can be found in various locations, such as off-the-beaten-path areas. You can visit these abandoned communities if you’re looking for a unique experience.

Various ghost towns can be found all around the country, from perfectly preserved ghost towns to submerged skeletons. In some, hip artist communities are staking out space in abandoned buildings, while in others, ghosts still roam the streets.

Rhyolite, Nevada 

The town of Rhyolite was established in a volcanic rock canyon near Death Valley. After the discovery of gold by “Shorty” Harris in 1904, its population grew to thousands. Unfortunately, the area’s declining mine production led to its collapse in 1920. The town’s many surviving buildings, such as the train depot, bank, and general store, have been featured in various movies.

Bodie, California

In the West, there are a lot of popular ghost towns, such as Bodie, a former mining community that feels frozen in time. During your visit to this area, you can expect to see numerous abandoned buildings, including churches, saloons, and schools. Many of the town’s valuable relics are still intact.

Custer, Idaho

The number of people living in the gold mining town of Custer peaked in 1896. It was located deep inside the Challis National Forest in Idaho. Its large stamp mill and eight saloons provided the town with various services, while a small Chinatown was also established. However, after 15 years following its boom, the mills closed, and the residents had to relocate.

The majority of the town’s buildings are still intact. In 1981, it was added to the national register of historic places. Its original school has since been converted into a museum.

Kennecott, Alaska 

The people of Kennecott enjoyed a prosperous life due to its mining industry. During the 1900s, two prospectors went to this area in an attempt to find copper. Unfortunately, they accidentally came across a massive amount of copper. The area’s five mines made it one of the most prosperous mining regions in the world during the early 20th century.

In 1938, the copper supply in the area was at an all-time low, which led to the closure of the mines in Kennecott. Today, it’s a part of the Wrangell-St. Elias National Park.