Skip to content

14 Ghost Towns In Michigan [MAP]

    Ghost Towns in Michigan

    If you’re searching for ghost towns in Michigan, we’ve got you covered! Below are 14 different ghost towns you can explore across the great state of Michigan along with their status and exact GPS coordinates.

    We rate ghost towns in Michigan based on their status. Here’s how our system works:

    • Abandoned: Is abandoned with ruins and structures in a decayed state. Great for urban explorers.
    • Historic: Preservation efforts have been made and sometimes plaques installed. Great for everyone.
    • Barren: Almost nothing remains of the town. Ideal for metal detectorists.
    • Commercial: Is commercially owned with amenities, restaurants, and stores. Great for families.
    • Semi-Abandoned: Abandoned areas with a small population in the area.
    • Privately Owned: Tours might be available but not open to the general public.


    1. Copper Falls

    47.42991, -88.19871
    Status: Abandoned

    Photo Credit: www.visitkeweenaw.com

    History:

    The town was settled in 1854 by the Central Mining Company, which acquired 300 acres from the Northwestern Mining Company, which operated in the Eagle Harbor area of Michigan’s Keweenaw Peninsula. The area had a Native American mining pit which was known to lead to a vein of copper.

     By the end of the century, only a few companies continued operations, including one in Copper Falls. The resulting lack of jobs meant that the town slowly turned into a ghost town. The environment continued to slowly erode the town’s population, and many residents moved away.

    What’s Left?

    Its most notable feature is the Central Mine, which was once home to more than 1,300 people. Now, the abandoned mine site has been restored to a historic district with quaint buildings. The falls are gorgeous during the summer and fall seasons, making Copper Falls one of the most scenic ghost towns in Michigan.


    2. Damon

    44.47751, -84.22834
    Status: Abandoned

    History:

    If you love history and are fascinated by old buildings and artifacts, you’ll want to visit the abandoned town of Damon. This small town was once a thriving lumber town but slowly declined as demand for lumber fell. In its lumbering days, Damon had four blocks of businesses and even a school for children. It was named after George Damon, the owner of a lumber company called Cutting & Damon. It received a post office in 1880 and closed in 1907, though it briefly reopened in 1911. 

    What’s Left?

    Today explorers can find overgrown ruins in the treelines and explore the cemetery which is still maintained by the locals.


    3. Delaware

    47.42111, -88.09583
    Status: Abandoned

    History:

    Delaware is an unincorporated community that started as a copper mining town in 1846. Its population peaked at more than a thousand people, and construction was funded by mining companies. When the mines closed, the residents packed up and left to find work elsewhere.

    What’s Left?

    The remaining buildings and mine can be seen along Highway 41 and are fairly well preserved. The mine, old homes, and stone foundations are easily accessible, making this one of the few ghost towns in Michigan that are great for the whole family.


    4. Ozark

    46.14195, -84.96562
    Status: Abandoned

    History:

    Ozark was settled in 1875 and was a major stop on the local rail line. Like many ghost towns in Michigan Ozark started off as a lumber town, but by the late 1800s had established itself with several businesses, homes, and accreditations. The town peaked at just over 300 residents but decline during WWI until its post office was officially closed in 1966.

    What’s Left?

    Today there isn’t much left of Ozark. The town still has its one-room school house which is cool to see, and a few abandoned homes in the surrounding area.


    5. Soo Junction

    46.33556, -85.25953
    Status: Barren

    History:

    Soo Function was founded as a railroad town in 1893, and quickly grew in terms of scale. Even with only 75 residents, the town had a saloon, a hotel, and numberous businesses. However, this success was shortlived and by 1920 the area was deserted.

    What’s Left?

    Explorers can find a few old shacks made of wood and tar paper hidden away in the overgrowth. While there’s not much left in the area and active business does still give riverboat tours from the property.


    6. Shackhuddle

    42.86338, -85.82563
    Status: Abandoned

    Photo Credit: google.com/maps

    History:

    Not much is known about Shackhuddle, but we do know that it has one of the most unique names of all the ghost towns in Michigan. Shackhuddle once had a sawmill, schoolhouse, and railroad access.

    What’s Left?

    Shackhuddle has little left behind, however, explorers can still find an abandoned cemetery tucked away about 100 feet from the main road. There’s also a privately owned restored school house and old railroad grade.


    7. Pere Cheney

    44.57325, -84.63537
    Status: Abandoned

    History:

    One of the most haunting Michigan ghost towns is Pere Cheney, located on the lower peninsula. Once home to nearly 1,500 people, it was a lumber town with many settlers looking for work. Unfortunately, the town fell on hard times and was abandoned in the early twentieth century. Although some residents claim they see ghosts and spirits in the area, the area itself is largely abandoned.

    Many residents became sick with a respiratory illness and died, forcing the others to flee to avoid catching the sickness. The town would only survive for 43 years before being abandoned by all its residents.

    What’s Left?

    Today, visitors to Pere Cheney can visit the cemetery, the only remaining piece of town. According to a popular legend, there was a “witch” who lived in the town, hung from a large oak tree, and was buried under the tree. It is not known whether the ghost was a witch, but the legend does suggest that the villagers cursed the town as a result of the witch’s treatment.

    Many people claim to capture voices of children and other haunting sounds on digital recorders, making this one of the most haunted ghost towns in Michigan.


    8. Deward

    44.84056, -84.8267
    Status: Barren

    Photo Credit: Jim Garrett – flickr.com

    History:

    The post office in Deward was established in 1901, and it served as the center of community life for this small community. The post office, depot, and bank vault were located in the same building. In 1905, the population of Deward was approximately 800.

    The community included a post office, school, and hotel, as well as a church, boarding house, and general store. Deward also had a railroad depot, where eight engines hauled half a million board feet of lumber daily. Deward was home to a Swedish Lutheran church and community center.

    According to an article written by Carl Addison Leech, the town was divided into two parts, the railroad men’s section and the mill group’s section. The mill group’s part included a company general store, two-story boarding house, and 300 cottages.

    What’s Left?

    Deward is situated on the border of the Pere Marquette State Forest, the Mackinaw State Forest, and the Au Sable State Forest. It lies in the corner of Crawford County, Kalkaska County, and Antrim County, near the headwaters of the Manistee River.

    Today not much is left of Deward, making it one of the less exciting ghost towns in Michigan. However, those with metal detectors might be able to find remains buried underground.


    9. Singapore

    42.66983, -86.21146
    Status: Barren

    History:

    The town was named for the exotic island of Singapore to draw ship trade and boat travelers to the area. Although its founders envisioned it becoming an important Midwestern city, nature and economic forces had other ideas. Today, only a few buildings remain in the area.

    After a blizzard almost wiped out the town of Singapore, the locals gathered in a nearby shipwreck for food. The lumber trade declined and the towns sank into obscurity. After the town was almost completely buried in sand, a fire destroyed the remaining buildings. The ruins of these ghost towns are all that remain today. The Saugatuck-Douglas Historical Society, the town’s executive director, says that the ghost town remains as a testament to the region’s past.

    What’s Left?

    A few historical markers can be found in the area but a majority of the ruins and homes lie beneath the sandy dunes near the shore.


    10. Dunham

    46.38148, -89.78355
    Status: Barren

    Photo Credit: Martin J. Hogan – flickr.com

    History:

    This small town is nestled in the woods on a dirt road known as Old US2 and sits southeast of Wakefield. The town was once home to the Gleeson family, which built the World’s End Tavern on a steep hillside overlooking Tinkers Creek. The Gleeson family also built a house for the lockmaster of the section of the Ohio & Erie Canal that opened in 1827. It also included a cemetery for the Gleeson family, which is located on a pyramid-shaped mound.

    What’s Left?

    Today, explorers are lucky to find any remains in the area. However, Dunham is one of the most remote ghost towns in Michigan making it a great place to escape to, or camp overnight.


    11. Fayette

    45.71747, -86.66791
    Status: Historic

    History:

    Once a bustling community, Fayette had around 500 residents, the majority of them immigrants from Canada and Northern Europe. After the blast furnaces closed, most workers migrated to other areas for employment, but a few stayed to start farms and raise children. Once the smelting operation shut down, the town became a quiet fishing village. However, the town didn’t die out right away. It eventually became a quiet state park and fishing community.

    What’s Left?

    For a more up-close look at the history of Fayette, Michigan, you can visit Fayette Historic State Park, located on M-183. The park has a historic townsite, harbor, beach, and five miles of trails. Fayette is home to many well-preserved buildings, including a church, a school, and a cemetery. The area is also home to cattle, deer, and other farm animals.


    12. Baltic

    47.06742, -88.63345
    Status: Semi-Abandoned

    History:

    The town was home to the Baltic Mining Company, which started operations there in 1882. During the depression, however, the copper mine closed, and now the area is a ghost town. While there are few traces of life, visitors can explore the remains of old buildings and the remains of the town’s past.

    What’s Left?

    Baltic still has a small community that lives in the area, but there are many streets with old decaying homes or empty lots from a more prosperous time. If you’re looking for ghost towns in Michigan to live in, you might have Baltic all to yourself one day.

    13. Butternut

    43.18336, -84.91556
    Status: Semi-Abandoned

    History:

    Butternut has settled during the late 1800s and survived primarily by harvesting and selling lumber via train. Eventually the railroad closed its route to Butternut, cutting the town off from vital commerce.

    What’s Left?

    Today few homes are left in Butternut. If you’re in the area be sure to drive through, but there isn’t enough left to make a major trip out of visiting.

    14. Marlborough

    43.86021, -85.84127
    Status: Semi-Abandoned

    Photo Credit: Pintrest.com

    History:

    Before the Great Northern Portland Cement Company’s shutdown, Marlborough was a bustling town south of Baldwin. The town was built around a cement plant that used marl from local lakes.

    Its population increased to 400 residents by 1905, but by the time the Great Northern Cement Company decided to make a more cost-effective cement, the town was in the waning stages. The Great Northern Portland Cement Company eventually went bankrupt in 1906, and the houses of the village were sold for salvage.

    What’s Left?

    The abandoned buildings and ruins of Marlborough, Michigan, have been the target of graffiti and tree growth, but the ruined edifices still retain a lingering presence. These structures are spread out over 80 acres and were once a thriving town of 72 homes.


    Go out and explore!

    That concludes our list of ghost towns in Michigan, but that doesn’t mean that’s all there is to find. Take the back roads, follow train tracks, and find some places for yourself. There are plenty of places I kept off this list so get out there and explore.

    If you’re having trouble finding ghost towns be sure to check out our Ultimate Guide to Finding Abandoned Places, or explore other ghost towns across the country.