3800 American Ghost Towns You Can Visit on One Map

Geotab
Geotab

Not every city is destined to survive forever. In the 19th century, plenty of towns established during mining, oil, and railway booms flourished for a few decades, then shriveled up when their single source of economic support dried up, leaving entire towns abandoned. Geotab recently mapped out more than 3800 of these ghost towns across the U.S., diving into what areas have the highest concentration of long-abandoned settlements.

When you click on each state, pop-ups will reveal how many ghost towns that state is home to, which county has the highest concentration of them, and which city features the most in a 25- or 50-mile radius around it.

The image above is from Berlin, Nevada, a one-time mining town established in the 1880s. The mine shut down after a strike in the early 1900s, and was abandoned by the 1910s. Many of the original buildings remain standing today, though. It's now part of Berlin-Ichthyosaur State Park.

Below is Harrisburg, a ghost town in Utah established in 1859. Settlers struggled to farm on the rugged land, and floods and other disasters eventually drove them to relocate elsewhere. It was abandoned by the 1890s, but remnants of some of the stone buildings are still around.

While we often associate ghost towns with Western locales like California (where there are 346 ghost towns), there are a striking number of them in Kansas, Oklahoma, and Texas, where the Dust Bowl and the Great Depression left 308, 236, and 511 towns abandoned, respectively. Florida is also full of ghostly remains of cities, with 257 of them across the state. States in other parts of the country have strikingly few ghost towns. The Northeast is particularly bare: Rhode Island, Connecticut, and Maine have one, four, and five, respectively.

Explore the entire project here. If you don't have the time for a road trip to see all 3800-plus ghost towns on the map, you can take a virtual tour of the now-abandoned 19th century town of Bodie, California here, or check out our list of 10 specific ghost towns in the U.S. to visit. Though of course, if you really love ghost towns, you could just buy your own.

Ghost Towns of America
Click the image to open the full interactive version (via Geotab).

Here's How Daylight Saving Time Affects Your Part of the Country

Andy Woodruff
Andy Woodruff

Daylight saving time was created to benefit Americans, but not every part of the country is affected equally. Within the Eastern time zone, for instance, the sun rises a whole 40 minutes earlier in New York City than it does in Detroit. To illustrate how daylight saving time impacts sunrise and sunset times around the county, cartographer Andy Woodruff published a series of helpful maps on his website.

Below, the map on the left depicts how many days of reasonable sunrise time—defined as 7 a.m. or earlier—each part of the country is getting. The regions in the yellow sections have the most days with early sunrises and the darker parts have the fewest. On the right, the second map shows how many sunsets past 5 p.m. we’re getting each year, which appear to be a lot more abundant

Next, he visualized what these sunrise and sunset times would look like if daylight saving were abolished completely, something many people have been pushing for years. While our sunset times remain pretty much the same, the mornings start to look a lot sunnier for people all over the country, especially in places like West Texas.

And for those of you who were curious, here’s what America would look like if daylight saving time were in effect year-round. While mornings would look miserable pretty much everywhere, there’d at least be plenty of sunshine to enjoy once we got off work.

You can tinker with an interactive version of the daylight saving map on Woodruff’s blog.

All images courtesy of Andy Woodruff.

This article originally ran in 2015.

The Most Popular Netflix Documentary in Each State

Netflix
Netflix

Before there was Making a Murderer, there was The Staircase. The true crime docuseries—which debuted in 2004 before making its way to Netflix in extended form—chronicles the 2001 death of Kathleen Peterson and the bizarre twists and turns of her husband Michael's subsequent murder trial. Though the extended version only arrived on the streaming service in June 2018, it's already America’s favorite Netflix documentary, according to a new analysis by DISH.

To map America's viewing habits, DISH figured out which Netflix Originals documentaries and docuseries had at least a 7.8 rating on IMDB, then plugged them into Google to track their search volume over the last year. The results reveal the geographic regions where Netflix viewers are dying to learn more about certain documentaries.

It’s perhaps no surprise that The Staircase, which left viewers with more questions than answers, is one of the top-searched series. It's the fan favorite in 12 states, including North Carolina, where the incident occurred. The 2016 documentary 13th follows closely behind as the most popular documentary in 11 states. Last Chance U (2016), Making a Murderer, and series The Toys That Made Us also made the top five.

Among the most popular documentaries, three are related to murder cases, three are related to the natural world, two are about the healthcare industry, and two are about the police and race relations. Others tell the story of specific events in history (like the time a cult overtook a sleepy town in Oregon) or cultural phenomena (like how certain toys shaped our childhoods).

Events that hit close to home also add another layer of fascination. This year's Flint Town is the most-searched documentary in Michigan, and Making a Murderer is a favorite in Wisconsin, where the events take place.

Keep scrolling to see the full breakdown by state, courtesy of DISH. Looking for something new to binge? Check out these 25 documentaries that you can stream right now. 

A map of the U.S. with icons showing the most popular documentaries there
DISH

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