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Location DB > United States > Oklahoma > Picher > Picher
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 Database Info
created by CaJuN on 6/28/2010 5:35 PM
last modified by Dee Ashley on 10/15/2015 11:34 AM
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This location has been labeled by its creator as Public, and therefore can be viewed by anyone.
The town of Picher is being torn down as of January 2011, If you're gonna go, you're probably too late.

Check nearby towns of Cardin, and a few others in the area.

Treece (located in was even more recently, included in the buyout. Treece is/was part of the Tri-cities mining district, and recently, earned a place in the Tar creek superfund locations.
 Basic Information
Type: Ghost Town
Status: Abandoned
Accessibility: Easy, it's on maps
Recommendation: drop everything - must see
 Physical Information

Picher, Oklahoma
United States
Owner: Superfund, maybe?
  • See a map of this location
  •  Hazards
  • asbestos
  • rust
  • unsafe flooring
  • flooding
  • water
  • air quality
  • probably just about every kind of hazard you can think of here
  •  Interesting Features
    Fairly recently abandoned mining town, there' a little of everything here, houses streets, old businesses... There's really not a lot left active...
    As of October of 2015, there is very little left of Picher, OK. There is an abandoned church, and a gutted chunk of neighborhood (I mean, completely gutted down to every piece of glass in the windows even). Only a couple structures still stand, and the best one (the school) still standing is partly occupied by law enforcement, judging from the 3 or 4 squad cars and a couple other city misc. vehicles. In short, it's not nearly as great of an explore as it was two or three years ago since the government came in and bulldozed the entire town.
     Security Measures
  • Like the hazrds, It depends where youre at in town. *EDIT* There are still people living here, and they see you go into a building, they will call the cops, and they will arrest you. Be careful if you decide to go.
  •  Historical Dates
    Built: 1918
    Closed: 2009
     Required Equipment
  • flashlight
  • gloves
  • long pants / sleeves
  •  Recommended Equipment
    Camera, bottled drinking water from far away from this place
    Was a mining town, now it's a Superfund site.

    Here's an excerpt from Wiki:
    "Picher is a ghost town and former city in Ottawa County, Oklahoma, United States. Much of the land was originally owned by the Quapaw after Indian Removal. In the early 20th century, mining took place initially under federal leases of these lands but the Quapaw did not receive a fair share of royalties and were generally excluded from the thousands of mining jobs in the region. In 2000 they comprised a significant minority of the population in the city. This was a major national center of lead and zinc mining at the heart of the Tri-State Mining District.

    More than a century of unrestricted subsurface excavation dangerously undermined most of Picher's town buildings and left giant piles of toxic metal-contaminated mine tailings (known as chat) heaped throughout the area. The discovery of the cave-in risks, groundwater contamination, and health effects associated with the chat piles and subsurface shafts resulted in the site being included in 1980 in the Tar Creek Superfund Site by the US Environmental Protection Agency. The state collaborated on mitigation and remediation measures, but a 1996 study found that 34% of the children in Picher suffered from lead poisoning due to these environmental effects, which could result in lifelong neurological problems.[4] Eventually EPA and the state of Oklahoma agreed to a mandatory evacuation and buyout of the entire township. The similarly contaminated satellite towns of Treece, Kansas and Cardin, Oklahoma were included in the Tar Creek Superfund site.

    A 2006 Army Corps of Engineers study showed 86% of Picher's buildings (including the town school) were badly undermined and subject to collapse at any time.[5] The destruction of 150 homes by an F4 tornado in May 2008 accelerated the exodus. On September 1, 2009, the state of Oklahoma officially dis-incorporated the city of Picher.The town ceased official operations on September 1, 2009 and the population plummeted from 1,640 at the 2000 census to 20 at the 2010 census. As of January 2011, only six homes and one business remain, their owners having refused to leave at any price. The rest of the town's buildings, except designated historical structures, were scheduled to be demolished by the end of the year.

    Picher is among a small number of locations in the world (such as Gilman, Colorado, Centralia, Pennsylvania, and Wittenoom, Western Australia) to be evacuated and declared uninhabitable due to environmental and health damage caused by the mines the town once serviced."
    Here is the original link (and much more detailed info on this location):,_Oklahoma
     Media Coverage



    There's a thousand more articles of all kinds. Google it.
     Future Plans
    It'll be tied up in red tape until the sinkholes swallow it, or tornadoes finish what they started.

    Add your own story
     Photo Galleries
    Click to view gallery
    June 2010 Passing Through
    Mon, Jun 28th, 2010
    posted by CaJuN
    10 pictures
    Click to view gallery
    2010-07-05 Visit
    Tue, Jul 6th, 2010
    posted by sUrD
    25 pictures
    Click to view gallery
    mirth of july
    Tue, Jul 6th, 2010
    posted by CaJuN
    10 pictures
    Click to view gallery
    More from the 2010-07-05 Visit
    Fri, Jul 9th, 2010
    posted by sUrD
    25 pictures
    Click to view gallery
    KJ and Jessi
    Tue, Jul 13th, 2010
    posted by KingJalopy
    25 pictures
    Click to view gallery
    Picher perfect
    Mon, Jan 18th, 2016
    posted by cdevon
    10 pictures
    Click to view gallery
    What Once Was
    Sat, Feb 6th, 2016
    posted by Dee Ashley
    21 pictures

    Add your own photos

    Mark all galleries as Seen
     Web Links,_Oklahoma

    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 7 / 10
    Coolness 6 / 10
    Content Quality 5 / 10
    This location's validation is current. It was last validated by Steed on 2/10/2016 2:38 AM.

     Latest Changes
  • on Feb 10 16 at 2:38, Steed validated this location
  • on Feb 6 16 at 13:49, Dee Ashley updated gallery What Once Was
  • on Feb 6 16 at 13:49, Dee Ashley updated gallery picture
  • on Feb 6 16 at 13:48, Dee Ashley updated gallery picture
  • on Feb 6 16 at 13:48, Dee Ashley updated gallery picture Location, Location, Location!
  • on Feb 6 16 at 13:48, Dee Ashley updated gallery picture Reclaiming Territory
  • on Feb 6 16 at 13:47, Dee Ashley updated gallery picture Real Estate
  • on Feb 6 16 at 13:47, Dee Ashley updated gallery picture They're slacking lately
  • on Feb 6 16 at 13:47, Dee Ashley updated gallery picture Perspective
  • on Feb 6 16 at 13:47, Dee Ashley updated gallery picture They're slacking lately
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