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The lands that once formed the romantic Wild West are famous for many ghost towns dotting the landscapes today. But there are plenty of ghost towns to be found in the East as well. The ghost town of Scull Shoals is found in northern Georgia's Chattahoochee-Oconee National Forest. It is easy to visit and tells of a time gone by when it was a bustling settlement - even if it has been reclaimed by nature today.

Georgia has plenty of attractions to see and explore; it also has a number of state parks to visit next time one is in Georgia. Georgia is a state with many hidden gems - one of the places to visit is Georgia's Little Grand Canyon which was actually formed from poor farming practices in the 1800s.


Georgia's Stunning Chattahoochee-Oconee National Forest

The Chattahoochee National Forest is made up of two forests on Johns Mountain, Little Sand Mountain and Talyor Ridge. The forest offers a range of great outdoor opportunities with thousands of miles of rivers and streams, around 850 miles of recreational trails, and plenty of campgrounds.

  • Size: 867,000 Acres
  • Trails: Around 850 Miles Of Recreational Trails

The historic Sculls Shoals ruins are just one of the many worthwhile highlights of the Chattahoochee-Oconee National Forest.

Nestled within the Chattahoochee National Forest is the ghost town of Scull Shoals. The village was once a frontier settlement that was founded in 1782. It suffered from several Indian raids, and in 1793, the residents created Fort Clark.

Related: Interested In Visiting Death Valley To See Its Ghost Towns?

The Forest's Ghost Town Of Scull Shoals History

Native Americans called the area around the Oconee River home for many thousands of years. It was also through here that the Spanish conquistador DeSoto made his way through what is now the American South in the 1540s.

  • Founded: 1782
  • Abandoned: Decline From 1887 & Abandoned From The 1920s

After the treaty of 1802, settlers soon began to expand rapidly across the Oconee River

In its heyday, the mill had around 500 workers who tending 4,000 spindles.

But the good days of the mills and the Scull Shoals village were not to last. In the 1880s, the mills were impacted by floods in the area. The floods left war standing in the buildings for four days, and the covered toll bridge was swept downstream. The floods were devastating, leaving everything at the mills ruined (including hundreds of bales of cotton and 600 bushels of wheat).

The mills were left in economic chaos from which they were never able to recover. The decline continued until the settlement lay abandoned by the 1920s.

Ruins Of The Scull Shoals Ghost Village

Cotton was produced in large quantities, and a gristmill, sawmill, a 4-story brick textile mill, stores, and homes were built in the settlement. Today the village and the mills are in ruins. Only three walls of the brick warehouse and store remain as well as an arched brick bridge that led to the mills.

On the Oconee River, visitors can find the remains of the old wooden covered toll bridge stand. In the area that was once the village, brick chimney bases can be fill found about the place.

It is crazy to think that in its day, the town was a reasonable size and boasted a successful textile and agricultural industry.

The ruins of Scull Shoals are beautiful and lay as a memorial to a different era. It tells the story of how nothing lasts forever and how cities and towns eventually decline and are left abandoned.

Related: Tour Vulture City, Arizona's Eeriest Ghost Town

Visiting The Scull Shoals Historical Village

Take advantage of the information boards at Scull Shoals Historical Village that provides information about the site and the Scull Shoals Historical Village. Read the notice board and enjoy a leisurely self-guided tour of the ghost town of Scull Shoals.

  • Open: During Daylight Hours
  • Reservations: None Required
  • Fees: None
  • Season: Year-Round
  • Admission: Free

Note that this is a historical site, and the removal of any historical artifacts or other objects is strictly forbidden.

The closest town is the small town of Greensboro, Georgia. It is around 15.5 miles away and a 25-minute drive (the town has services like restaurants and grocery stores).

  • Information Center: Open Monday to Friday 8.00 am to 12.00 pm & 1.00 pm to 4.30 pm