In the early 1940s, Fontana Dam was created to meet the increasing electricity demands during WWII. At the time of its creation, it was the fourth-highest dam in the world and today is the highest dam in the eastern United States. But both the Fontana Dam and Fontana Lake Reservoir left devastating and life-altering consequences on all who called Swain County home. Several were displaced and never able to return to their homes. While the Road To Nowhere is a haunting example of what happened due to the creation of this dam, many don’t know about another place deeply affected. Allow us to introduce you to Judson, the underwater ghost town in North Carolina with quite a story…

Judson is a haunting place, and it’s viewable around one to three times per year. For those who have been or witnessed it before, what were your experiences? When would you recommend others visit this underwater ghost town in North Carolina?

If you love haunting spots in North Carolina, this road trip through North Carolina ghost towns is one you won’t forget!

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ghost town in North Carolina

Is Judson the only ghost town in North Carolina?

Here are some ghost towns in North Carolina:

  • Brunswick Town
  • Buffalo City
  • Cape Lookout Village
  • Cataloochee
  • Ceramic
  • Diamond City
  • Fort Dobbs


While the West might be known for its many abandoned places, North Carolina holds its own in terms of ghost towns, too! The Tar Heel State has plenty of amazing, eerie, and haunting ghost towns, in fact! Between dark pasts and memories of now left in the form of ruins – the explorer in all of us would love a few days to venture into the abandoned parts of North Carolina. Luckily, we’ve constructed a whole map that routes you through the most infamous ghost towns in North Carolina. This road trip takes you through all of North Carolina’s historic, haunted, and creepy abandoned places. Stop along the way and plan other sites to see, or spread the trip out – one to the coast and another through the mountains. The road trip starts you at Brunswick Town and ends at the haunting, submerged ghost town of Judson, which you know all about by now! Buckle up; it’s going to be a scary ride!

What's the most famous ghost town in North Carolina?

Sit down and get comfortable, because we have quite a story for you! Perhaps the most infamous North Carolina 'ghost town' the mysteriously abandoned Roanoke Colony is rooted in mystery and folklore. After John White established the colony, he left his daughter and newly born granddaughter, Virginia Dare, along with 115 settlers to go back to England. The colonist feared for their lives due to Native Americans, forcing White to return to England and ask for help and explain the dire situation. When White returned three years later, on the date of his granddaughter's third birthday, he found only an abandoned colony. The words 'Croatoan' were carved on a tree as well as the words 'Cro.' The houses and buildings were dismantled... meaning their departure was not rushed. Due to an incoming storm, White was never able to search the surrounding land to discover the fate of his family or the other settlers. Today, The Lost Colony is thought to be one of America's first missing person cases... if not *the* first case. Each summer the 'tell' of the Lost Colony is reenacted in a dramatic play. There are several rumors and suspicions surrounding the colonist's disappearance. 

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