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Location DB > United States > Pennsylvania > Centralia > Centralia
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 Database Info
created by PonyGrl420 on 11/17/2003 2:16 AM
last modified by Gecco on 1/2/2023 8:31 AM
Publically Viewable Publically Viewable
This location has been labeled by its creator as Public, and therefore can be viewed by anyone.
Small coal town that sits atop a burning coal seam. Not much is left, aside from the few occupied homes and a fire station. On one of the back roads there is a silo and large open tank filled with green water.

4.19.2021 - As of late 2020, one of the key draws to this site, "graffiti highway" was covered in hundred of piles of dirt. You can still walk back there, but there really isn't anything to see anymore.
 Basic Information
Type: Outdoors
Status: Active
Accessibility: Easy
Recommendation: check it out if you're nearby
 Physical Information
Route 61
Centralia, Pennsylvania
United States
Owner: State of Pennsylvania / Blaschak Coal Corp
  • See a map of this location
  •  Hazards
  • unsafe flooring
  • air quality
  • sink holes, mine fire
  •  Interesting Features
    in 1992 the government claimed eminent domain however seven people still live here. Smoke, coming out of the ground, a large crack in the closed section of Rt. 61, Many sinkholes and unsafe ground. Old streets, a Municipal building which houses the fire company that is manned by volunteers from Aristes and a few houses.

    The remaining church in the borough holds weekly Saturday night services, and the borough's four cemeteries are still well-maintained.
     Security Measures
     Historical Dates
    Built: 1865
    Closed: 0
     Required Equipment
  • water, good footwear
  •  Recommended Equipment
    good hiking shoes, camera
    It was known as Centreville until 1865, when the name was changed to Centralia and the post office was established.

    The anthracite coal industry was the principal employer in the community. Coal mining continued in Centralia until the 1960s, when most of the companies went out of business. Bootleg mining continued until 1982.

    Strip and open-pit mining is still active in the area, and there is an underground mine employing about 40 employees three miles to the west.

    The borough once had seven churches, five hotels, twenty-seven saloons, two theatres, a bank, post office, and fourteen general and grocery stores along with its schools.

    Its population was at one time over 2,000 residents. Now there are only 12.

    The fire was started in a garbage dump over an open coal seam in May of 1962. It was common to burn the garbage on a weekly basis in the landfill, located in an abandoned mine pit in the southeast portion of Centralia.

    In July of 1962, the Department of Environmental Resources started to monitor the fire. Boreholes were drilled to check to extent and the temperature of the fire. Gas monitors were also installed in most homes in the area above the hottest fire. Attempts to put the fire out were unsuccessful, and it continued to burn throughout the 1960s and 1970s.

    In 1984, Congress allocated more than $42 million for relocation efforts. Most of the residents accepted buyout offers and moved to the nearby communities of Mount Carmel and Ashland.

    In 1992, Pennsylvania claimed eminent domain on all properties in the borough, condemning all the buildings within the borough. Current residents are considered squatters by the government.

    The residents to save the Borough of Centralia was formed to try to save the town. It garnered a lot of attention to state and local officials, but none the less, they encouraged them to move. As people left, their homes were razed.
     Media Coverage
    Massive sinkhole opens in Centralia, Feb 2019
     Future Plans
    There is talk that many will turn up in 2016 to open a time capsule buried in 1966 next to the veterans’ memorial.

    (Time Capsule opened two years early, in 2014, due to an attempted theft.) Pennsylvania's current plans for Centralia are to allow it to return to wilderness.
    History of Heartache
    Mon, Dec 31st, 2018
    posted by Cfourexplore

    Add your own story
     Photo Galleries
    Click to view gallery
    Centralia Oct. 03
    Mon, Nov 17th, 2003
    posted by PonyGrl420
    10 pictures
    Click to view gallery
    Centralia - June 2004
    Tue, Jun 8th, 2004
    posted by NowhereMan1985
    23 pictures
    Click to view gallery
    Vulp's Trip: October 2004
    Sat, Dec 18th, 2004
    posted by Vulp
    6 pictures
    Click to view gallery
    July 2005
    Thu, Jul 28th, 2005
    posted by Vulp
    6 pictures
    Click to view gallery
    November 2005
    Thu, Nov 3rd, 2005
    posted by Darkwolf
    20 pictures
    Click to view gallery
    March 2006
    Tue, Mar 7th, 2006
    posted by Zoltar
    21 pictures
    Click to view gallery
    January-April 2006
    Mon, Apr 17th, 2006
    posted by PAexplorations
    39 pictures
    Click to view gallery
    November 2006
    Sat, Nov 25th, 2006
    posted by Captain Obvious
    10 pictures
    Click to view gallery
    It's Peanut Butter Jelly Time
    Tue, Dec 12th, 2006
    posted by JC
    5 pictures
    Click to view gallery
    Tourist Trap
    Mon, Dec 18th, 2006
    posted by PAexplorations
    9 pictures
    Click to view gallery
    Scarce Documents
    Tue, May 15th, 2007
    posted by PAexplorations
    20 pictures
    Click to view gallery
    Mon, Jun 4th, 2007
    posted by PAexplorations
    13 pictures
    Click to view gallery
    PhotoSeeker's July 2008 Visit
    Wed, Jul 23rd, 2008
    posted by PhotoSeeker
    6 pictures
    Click to view gallery
    Two trips at a time
    Wed, Aug 20th, 2008
    posted by simmorill
    12 pictures
    Click to view gallery
    The Florence Crews October Trip
    Sun, Nov 9th, 2008
    posted by FlorenceCrew
    10 pictures
    Click to view gallery
    Centralia 2010-11-27
    Sun, Nov 28th, 2010
    posted by Ranger187
    9 pictures
    Click to view gallery
    The Highway And A Mobile Home
    Tue, Mar 17th, 2015
    posted by ForgottenRails
    12 pictures
    Click to view gallery
    mike dijitals pictures
    Sat, Sep 26th, 2015
    posted by Mike Dijital
    4 pictures
    Click to view gallery
    Centralia Explores 2015 & 16
    Mon, Dec 10th, 2018
    posted by Cfourexplore
    20 pictures
    Click to view gallery
    Historial Aerials
    Wed, Dec 12th, 2018
    posted by Gecco
    3 pictures
    Click to view gallery
    Thu, Feb 16th, 2023
    posted by KD20
    9 pictures

    Add your own photos

    Mark all galleries as Seen
     Web Links
    http://www.somethi...m/index.php?a=4022 (ALOD)
    Pennsylvania DEP, Maps & Graphics

    Edit this Location
     Moderator Rating
    The moderator rating is a neutral rating of the content quality, photography, and coolness of this location.

    Category Rating
    Photography 10 / 10
    Coolness 10 / 10
    Content Quality 10 / 10
    This location's validation is current. It was last validated by Emperor Wang on 2/17/2023 2:39 AM.

     Latest Changes
  • on Feb 17 23 at 2:39, Emperor Wang validated this location
  • on Feb 16 23 at 20:39, KD20 added some pictures to a gallery
  • on Feb 16 23 at 20:36, KD20 created a new gallery
  • on Jan 2 23 at 14:44, Steed validated this location
  • on Jan 2 23 at 8:31, Gecco changed the following: Hazards
  • on Jan 2 23 at 8:30, Gecco changed the following: Description, Web Links
  • on Apr 19 21 at 22:09, Emperor Wang validated this location
  • on Apr 19 21 at 17:42, fr00tCake changed the following: Description
  • on May 29 19 at 1:58, Emperor Wang validated this location
  • on May 29 19 at 1:39, Gecco changed the following: Future Plans
  •  Forum Threads about this Location
    New Thread
     SubjectStarted ByRepliesViewsLast Post
    You must log in for this feature to work.Two novels set in Centraliasplumer165412/9/2018 3:41 AM by Cfourexplore
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