Hi, everyone! I’m Lizzy J. and I’m here to tell you about the exciting world of ghost towns. Now, when you think of a ghost town, what comes to mind? A bunch of dilapidated buildings and maybe a few tumbleweeds? I’ve been to several ghost towns and I can tell ya, I’ve not ONCE come across a tumbleweed.
So what exactly IS a ghost town? Well, it’s not entirely what the name implies. A ghost town is technically a ‘dead’ town byway of either population or ceases to physically exist. There are a few ghost towns which have a very small population. These towns are either actual ghost towns or unincorporated. What’s the difference? A ghost town is usually a shadow of it’s former self. This means its purpose for surviving is no longer around. Case in point is the Sunflower Army Ammunition Plant in DeSoto, Kansas; located a few miles from the edge of Johnson and Douglas counties. Sunflower used to make ammo for the war. The entire plant is still there, along with the housing complex across the street which was built for the employees. The complex is still occupied, tho it looks a LOT like section 8 housing. It’s an array of apartment complexes that are around 80 years old.
Then there’s the unincorporated. Unincorporated get confused with ghost towns because they’re pretty much the same. The only difference being unincorporated are still very much occupied, but have their own gov’t to some degree.
My fascination with ghost towns started WAY before I even knew what they were. I was just a kid when my mom read a ‘Madeline’ book to my sister and I before bed. I remember the phrase ‘pulled Madeline from her watery grave’. After that, I was hooked. I began reading every book I could find regarding ghosts and the supernatural. Both at my school and public library. Then once I started to drive, I began to explore. This was in the early 2000s before GPS and cellphones were as available as they are today. I remember I got my first road atlas in 1995, in sixth grade. This was when the adventure REALLY began. I had a ghost book which gave descriptions and details about nearly every haunted place in each county in Kansas. My very first trip was to Sauer Castle in KCMO. Sauer is full of legend, just like Stull. Some believe the hype and others don’t. All I can say is the hype began WAY before my time and these locations have been closed from the public for a LONG time. I can’t say whether or not the stories are true.
Anyway, that was when I got bit by the bug. I began to explore. I started out by going down familiar roads and following them as far as I could. I figured as long as I didn’t make any unnecessary turns, I’d be okay. This theory made me learn that Metcalf Avenue goes ALL the way to Miami county. After that, I just kept going. Again, keep in mind this was WAY before GPS.
Now, I have a GPS and I now go literally EVERYWHERE. The only things that stop me are bad weather, time and no trespassing signs.
I hope you enjoy my posts and my upcoming photos, along with my Facebook, Instagram and Tumblr posts!