13 Michigan Ghost Towns You Should Check Out
For your first Michigan Ghost Town Tour, I have selected 13 of 'em for you to check out next time you roadtrip.
Allenville began as a station on the Detroit, Mackinac & Marquette Railroad and was originally known as "Alley Town" named after the founder of the Alley Lumber Company, J. Alley, in 1873. I've been there a few times and it's pretty cool, but beware of one of the neighbors – he tries to 'protect' what's left of the town by coming out of his house and firing his shotgun to scare visitors. I know...he did this to me. Find out more HERE.
After being founded in the 1860s (as "Greendale"), by 1872 Chase had a total of ten families living there and a broom handle factory, sawmill and shingle mill. Chase is located on US-10 and it's worth the drive to see the few old buildings that intermingle with the remaining population. Read more HERE.
James Oliver Curwood loved this town, now considered a bonafide Michigan Ghost Town. East of Higgins Lake and down a dirt road, this ghost town has a nice handful of photo ops. Check 'em out HERE and HERE.
The first house to be built here was in 1842, with a post office arriving in the 1860s. What you see here is basically all that's left of Deerfield Center, and does NOT show up on maps.
It's a real town with an historic name, but it's too bad they couldn't have come up with a more attractive name. It had, at one time, saloons, hotels, stores, shops and many businesses that all went belly-up when the lumber was depleted. Click HERE to see some Felch photos...
Gibbs City is a true ghost town…nothing is left of the downtown. After a fire broke out in 1921, everybody left. See a few photos and get some info HERE.
Pretty close to a ghost town, Middleton sits in the middle of the Michigan Mitten in Gratiot County. There are a good number of old vintage buildings to see downtown in this 1885 village. See for yourself!
Over the years, Palatka became legendary as a 'ghost town', even though it became known as “Caspian”. Explorers would come to search the 'Palatka' area, looking for shreds of evidence of a town but usually came up empty handed. Wanna try? Find its location HERE.
There are still some old buildings left standing in this mid-1800s village, with only one store still operating: the Phoenix (General) Store. See photos and location HERE.
This ghost town is completely gone, except for a smokestack. The rest of the town was obliterated by fire, and the remains were disintegrated by the lake winds and blowing sand. Click HERE for photos and to find out more.
This town does not exist anymore...but a church still stands to remind us. A tornado ruined the town in 1878 – they rebuilt, and then in 1900, the timber was all gone.....and not long afterward, so was the entire town. Click HERE for more.
Summit City is a mostly-ghost town in Grand Traverse County, Paradise Township with a few homes and possibly one business. It was created as a postal stop and railroad station along the Grand Rapids & Indiana Railroad in 1874. Read More HERE.
Vansville, sometimes listed as "Vaughnsville", "Vaughnville", or "Vaughsville", is located 1/2 mile south of Phoenix, and a stone's throw away from the old Cliff Mine. Vansville was named after Joel A.Vaughn who moved there in 1849 and began working at the Cliff Mine. He built five structures, which became dubbed "Vaughnville" in his honor. When the Cliff Mine shut down in 1873, Vaughnville's decline was not far behind. Click HERE for more.
When you visit any of these – or any Michigan Ghost Town – make sure you take pictures. You never know when some enterprising person will come along and decide to demolish these great old buildings to make way for a dollar store or parking lot.
13 Michigan Ghost Towns You Should Visit This Year