Ghost Towns of Oregon
This is by far the most complete list of Oregon’s Ghost Towns in existence. Many people say that Oregon has between 60 and 80 ghost towns, I have identified 268 on the map below and have another 50+ to add to the map.
*update* After much research, I believe that the number of ghost towns in Oregon is actually closer to 1600. Yes, that number is outstandingly hard to believe. But one of my primary sources, Oregon Post Offices 1847-1985” has that many entries. Another source, Lat-long.com lists 1614 “historical” post offices that no longer exist. Even accounting for absorbed post office, we still have a large number of towns that that never had post offices too, making me think that even this number is low. And yes, that is still more post offices then any other state.
Many of these towns simply do not exist anymore. If we’re lucky, they have left a name on modern maps. The ebb and flow of multiple gold strikes in the early days of Oregon, land speculation as Oregon was the last location of “cheap” land, and optimistic homesteaders choosing the wrong location, and railroads bypassing towns, led to many towns being built and then dwindling away.
Some of these towns persisted despite the odds. Maybe they were saved by the coming of the rail road, newly discovered industry or tourism. Frequently they died a few decades later as the rail roads lost profit, tourism moved on, or worse of all, highways bypassed towns completely. All of these left hints of civilization around the state. Historic Barns from past farms sit in back yards. Elegant Victorian homes are surrounded by neighborhoods of modern houses. Little green City Signs dot rural highways naming a small hamlet of two or three ramshackle buildings.
If you know anything more about any specific town, or know of any abandoned towns that are not on my list, please email me, or post a comment below on the relevant town.
An explanation of the Class and one digit codes on each town can be found here.
Town names and locations are gathered from a variety of sources. Here is a list of books that I personally own and rely on for Ghost Town Names and locations. I also rely on a variety of web based sources such as the Ghost Town Forums, WikiPedia(and it’s sources,) the Lat-Long.com Oregon Web Page, and of course, Google Maps for without, much of this research would not be possible.
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The Ghost Towns
Click below to find more information about individual Ghost Towns of Oregon
Bacona – isolated timber town SE of Vernonia that is now totally gone.
Bellwood – Needs more information!
Boones Landing (Boone’s Ferry, Boon)
Butteville (Butes, La Butte, Buteville, St. Alexcie)
Champoeg (Encampment du Sable)
Currinsville (Young’s Prairie, Zion)
Dolph (Tillamook County)
Eureka (Baker County)
Eureka (Eureka Bar)(Wallowa County)
Kerby (Kirbeyville, Napoleon)
Little Sweden (Green Basin)
Longcoy’s Grand View Park(Longcoy’s, Grand View)
Millirons (Stage Coach Stop)
Snooseville Corner (Snooseville) – Small village that contained a saw mill
Simnasho – Located on the Warmsprings Reservation
Tampico (No information!)
Van – abandoned ranching community in Harney County
Waldo (Sailor’s Diggings)
Oregon Ghost Town Books
And last but certainly far from least, Lambert Florin has a huge series of Ghost Town Books. Many cover Oregon Towns.