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Ghost town facts for kids

Kids Encyclopedia Facts
Bannack, Montana, USA, a ghost town that is now a State Park.
Craco, ghost town in Italy.

A ghost town is a name for a city or town in which no one lives anymore. It can happen because of economical reasons (for instance, a town of gold miners who cannot find gold anymore), a natural disaster (a flood, a very long drought) or even a man- made disaster (for example, the nuclear fallout that emptied the town of Prypiat, Ukraine).

Some ghost towns are kept intact as tourist attractions. Some examples are Bannack in the United States, Barkerville in Canada, Craco in Italy, Kolmanskop in Namibia, Pripyat in Ukraine, and Danushkodi in India.

The town of Plymouth on the Caribbean island of Montserrat is a ghost town that is the de jure capital of Montserrat. It was rendered uninhabitable by volcanic ash from an eruption of the Soufrière Hills Volcano.

Reasons for abandonment

Factors leading to the abandonment of towns include depleted natural resources, economic activity shifting elsewhere, railroads and roads bypassing or no longer accessing the town, human intervention, disasters, wars, and the shifting of politics or fall of empires. A town can also be abandoned when it is part of an exclusion zone due to natural or man-made causes.

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