Franklin, Washington, a once-thriving coal mining town located within the Hanging Gardens State Park, is now a forgotten site that has become a haunting reminder of the past. The town’s tragic history is deeply intertwined with the coal mining industry, which was a significant source of revenue for the town in the late 1800s.
However, a catastrophic cave-in claimed the lives of 47 miners, which led to the relocation of the families of the victims and the ultimate downfall of the town.
Despite its tragic past, Franklin remains an important historical site that offers a glimpse into the lives of the miners who worked and lived in the town. Although it is now only accessible with permission, the site is active with a gas drilling company. It has uncovered new discoveries and added to the understanding of the town’s history.
This article will explore the location and access to Franklin, the history and tragedy that led to its downfall, and the current state of the site and the discoveries that have been made. Through this exploration, readers will gain a deeper understanding of the significance of Franklin and the impact of the coal mining industry on the town’s history.
- Franklin was a coal mining town that suffered a tragic cave-in that claimed the lives of 47 miners, leading to its downfall.
- The town’s decline was multifaceted, but the tragedy of the cave-in was the final blow that led to its abandonment.
- The site is now only accessible with permission due to gas drilling activity. Still, ongoing exploration has uncovered intriguing artifacts that provide valuable insights into the daily lives of the former residents.
- Franklin remains an important historical site that offers a glimpse into the lives of the miners who worked and lived in the town, and serves as a haunting reminder of the impact of the coal mining industry on small, industrial towns.
Location and Access
Located within the undeveloped Hanging Gardens State Park, Franklin is a ghost town once a coal mining community in the late 1800s. To access the site legally, visitors must pass through two sets of gates and obtain permission.
The cemetery is the primary clue to finding the town, as no buildings are left, only foundations. Hiking trails in the Hanging Gardens State Park provide a scenic route to the ghost town. Visitors may also encounter various wildlife species, including deer, elk, and coyotes.
Exploring the abandoned town offers a glimpse into the past, with the trash dumps and hand-blown bottles providing insight into the town’s daily life. However, it is important to note that the shafts are sealed due to repellers falling to their deaths, and visitors should take caution when exploring the area.
History and Tragedy
The tragedies that occurred in the late 1800s, including a deadly cave-in that claimed the lives of 47 miners, played a significant role in the decline of this once-thriving community. The cave-in was caused by poor ventilation and inadequate support systems in the mine.
The families of the victims moved away, and the town slowly dried up as the coal mining industry declined. The aftermath of this tragedy left a lasting impact on the community, leading to the eventual abandonment of the town.
The culture of the community in Franklin was deeply intertwined with the coal mining industry. The town comprised mostly working-class families who relied on the mines for their livelihoods. The coal mining industry provided a sense of community and identity for the residents of Franklin, but ultimately, it was the same industry that led to the town’s downfall.
The causes of the town’s decline were complex and multifaceted, but the tragedy of the cave-in was the final blow that led to the abandonment of the town. Today, the remnants of Franklin serve as a reminder of the precarious nature of small, industrial towns that rely on a single industry for survival.
Current State and Discoveries
Despite facing challenges such as gas drilling and legal walk-in only access, ongoing exploration of the Franklin ghost town site has uncovered intriguing artifacts that shed new light on the history and culture of this once-thriving community.
The discoveries include hand-blown bottles, old spectacles with intact lenses, and other items that have survived.
These artifacts provide valuable insights into the daily lives of the former residents of Franklin, helping to piece together the puzzle of this forgotten coal mining town.
The exploration findings have revealed that Franklin was once a bustling community with a rich history and culture.
Despite the challenges of modern-day access and the presence of a gas drilling company, the site remains a fascinating window into the past.
With ongoing exploration, there is still much to be discovered about this forgotten town, and the hidden artifacts that remain uncovered offer tantalizing clues about life in Franklin during the late 1800s.
Frequently Asked Questions
Are there any preserved artifacts or structures from the town’s coal mining days?
Preserved artifacts and structures from Franklin’s coal mining days have not been found. Despite its historical significance, the town’s only remaining evidence is its cemetery and trash dumps. Access is limited and permission is required to visit.
What is the process for obtaining permission to access the ghost town site?
The application process for accessing the ghost town site in Franklin requires permission from the landowner, an active gas drilling company. Legal walk-in only access is permitted, and individuals must follow all safety regulations.
Have there been any reported paranormal experiences or sightings in the area?
There is no documented evidence of paranormal experiences or sightings in Franklin. Local folklore suggests that the cemetery may be haunted, but there have been no official paranormal investigations conducted at the site.
What impact has the gas drilling company had on the ghost town site?
The gas drilling controversy surrounding the Franklin ghost town site has raised concerns about its environmental impact. The drilling company’s activities may disrupt the historical integrity of the area and potentially harm the surrounding ecosystem.
Are there any plans for future development or preservation of the site?
Future plans for development or preservation of the Franklin ghost town site are not clear. However, its historical significance as a former coal mining town that experienced a tragic cave-in in 1880 may prompt efforts to preserve its remaining foundations and cemetery.