5 Ghost Towns Across Oregon With Their Histories

Lost Communities: 5 Ghost Towns Across Oregon With Their Histories

The ruins of once-vibrant towns may be seen dotting Oregon’s terrain, giving rise to reminders of its colorful history. There are almost 200 of these ghost towns, which bear witness to the state’s long history of industry and pioneering, ranging from timber to mining.

Five of the most fascinating ghost towns in Oregon will be covered in this article; each one reveals a unique tale from a bygone period. We’ll delve into the stories of wealth and fall that contributed to the buildings’ current state of eerie beauty as we visit the vacant streets and abandoned buildings that were once bustling with life.

Come along on an exploration of Oregon’s undiscovered regions, where ghosts of the past abound and walls rustle with tales of the bygone era.


George J. Friend, the company’s founder, inspired the name Friend. Loggers, farmers, and sheepherders used it as a center. The Great Southern Railroad line, which ran from Dufur to The Dalles, stopped at this location as well.

The town’s local store and one-room schoolhouse still survive on a busy roadway, and a cemetery is partially obscured by a stand of trees.

The village is still worth visiting even though there aren’t many still standing buildings. Friend has a cemetery, an ancient general store, and a one-room schoolhouse. It provides not just its history but also the unique opportunity to see a real-life ghost town.

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Located between McEwan and Austin, about half a mile south of Highway 7, Whitney was once a thriving logging community. By 1911, the Nibley Lumber Company had built a massive sawmill south of town, and up to 150 people were living there.

5 Ghost Towns Across Oregon With Their Histories

A sawmill located in the town provided lumber to the nearby gold mines. However, the town’s population never reached more than 100, and when the train was abandoned in 1947, it finally went extinct. Whitney, Oregon is a good place to visit if you’re looking for deserted villages in the American West.

This unincorporated settlement is situated on the North Fork of the Burnt River in Baker County, Oregon. It is close to Wallowa-Whitman National Forest and the Blue Mountains.

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Latourell, Oregon, was formerly a thriving river town and was situated less than half a mile downstream of the well-known Latourell Falls. Joseph Latourell established the town in the late 1800s, and it functioned as a hub for Columbia Gorge travelers as well as a railroad and lumber stop.

Now it’s a ghost town, with only a few nosy tourists calling it home.

There were a few houses beside Falls Creek and around a dozen two-story buildings throughout the town. There was even a brass band in the town! It was one of the few American towns that still had the allure of the past in the late 1800s.

The majority of the 1880s building’s original windows are still present, and the shingles are still firmly fastened to the roof. Since it is surrounded by vegetation and visible from the road, finding it shouldn’t be too difficult.

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In the latter part of the 1800s, George Millican established the town on his own. The community was formally incorporated as a town in 1913 after a post office was built.

5 Ghost Towns Across Oregon With Their Histories

The town’s population would eventually drop to one inhabitant running the post office after years of decline. Despite its isolated location, Millican is home to a number of abandoned structures, such as an ancient storefront with multiple roof holes and rat droppings all over it.

Bull Run

Bull Run, a corporate town with forty residences and businesses, was established in 1893. The town contained a gas station, grocery store, blacksmith shop, and blacksmith in addition to the hotel.

A school, a blacksmith shop, and a grocery store were among the modern conveniences the town offered. A lake named Roslyn Lake was created to retain the water required in the process of producing power, and the Mt. Hood Railway and Power Company inaugurated a three-story headquarters in 1909.

The old structures are still standing, even though the town is now abandoned. The historic mills are still standing and make for an excellent location for photos or ghost tours. Explore the mill itself, as well as an old concrete mill and a crib elevator.

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Final Words

Ghost towns in Oregon tell tales of a bygone era, with each one having its own rise and fall narrative. These abandoned locations provide a window into Oregon’s colorful past, from the lumbering settlement of Friend to the busy company town of Bull Run.

Thus, Oregon’s ghost towns await exploration by individuals looking for an adventure off the usual route.