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Most People Have No Idea There’s An Underwater Ghost Town Hiding In Idaho

Idaho is home to over 100 ghost towns, dozens more decaying schoolhouses from another era, and fascinating leftover architectural remnants of our unique state history. Now they’re just the fading, western-style remnants of our mining, logging, and nomadic-industrial past. But one particular community in southeast Idaho is something special that is unrivaled anywhere else…

Today, there is an underwater Atlantis right here in Idaho, and it is a mysterious wonder that only reveals itself during the driest of summers. But equally as fascinating is what has been discovered right in the heart of its century-old remnants!

The town of American Falls was once a thriving, active hub located on the west bank of the Snake River, but during what was easily the largest government relocation of its time, the town was moved in it’s entirety to avoid flooding by the nearby dam. The known history of American Falls is just as fascinating as what remains shrouded by the passage of time. Part underwater marvel, part ambitious undertaking, part prehistoric wonder, and part active community, this (literal) hidden gem is a spectacular portion of Idaho’s history that few know the full story of… and even fewer know of the incredible discoveries that its muddy depths have revealed.

This old townsite is also surprisingly scenic when the water recedes, as this video shows.

A special thank you to YouTube user David Ross for filming this stunning video of Old American Falls. Be sure to check out his other videos as well!

This special old town site is incredible for multiple reasons, to say the least — and what a fascinating history! If you like this, be sure to check out other abandoned places in Idaho or explore some of Idaho’s unique ghost towns and historic schools.

Jennifer
Super-rad musician, scholar, and cat enthusiast who digs Idaho sunsets and spontaneous nature walks. When not basking in Idaho's awesomeness for Only In Your State, you can find me lovingly concocting environmental goodness at TheBlueReview.org.