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5 abandoned places in Indiana worth visiting



Indianapolis, Indiana – There are areas in every state where people have left their belongings behind and the elements have taken over.

These places often provided some kind of service to the neighborhood. Whether they were formerly racetracks or theme parks, they functioned as gathering places for the local population to socialize. Some places, like as the Empire Quarry in Oolitic, gave local quarry workers the chance to make a living so they could support their families.

Indiana is home to a number of locations that, although being abandoned in 2023, have fascinating, unusual, and occasionally terrifying history that make them ideal for adventure seekers, as the list below will show.

Jungle Park Speedway

While the majority of Hoosiers and non-Indians associate the Indy 500 with racing, Indiana is also home to a previous racetrack that drew sizable crowds and held well-known events.

Originally built in 1926, the Jungle Park Speedway is situated in Parke County, approximately 50 miles west of Indianapolis. Several notable racers of the era, notably Wilbur Shaw, the winner of three Indianapolis 500s, and Mauri Rose, were frequent visitors to the track in its prime.

Unfortunately, the history of the event is marred by countless instances of fatal accidents that claimed the lives of multiple racers (as well as spectators), according to Atlas Obscura.

During the first five years of the venue’s existence, a spectator died, a track manager died from being struck, and four drivers died.

The main cause of this was that there was no barrier separating the spectator stands from the track.

Despite the later implementation of protective fences and improved road surfaces as extra safety measures, the facility continued to see accidents until it closed in 1955.

In 1960, the site reopened for a brief race of midget cars, but that event unfortunately resulted in the death of a Terre Haute woman.

Rose Island

Nestled within the Charleston State Park in Clark County, Rose Island opened its doors in 1923 and was a well-liked family getaway for just over a decade until the park was destroyed by flooding.

According to Atlas Obscura, David Rose, an entrepreneur, developed the amusement park and constructed a hotel, a roller coaster, and a swimming pool in addition to other attractions to draw tourists to the area.

As a result, families and couples started flocking to the coast in search of enjoyment, giving rise to “Rose Island.” Sadly, the enjoyment was short-lived as the Ohio River Flood of 1937 completely submerged the island.

The water level at the park’s attractions was up to ten feet above the ground. The site had to be abandoned when the flood’s intensity decreased because of extensive damage that could not be repaired.

Empire Quarry

Of all the limestone in the United States, Southern Indiana has some of the best.

Like many other towns in southern Indiana, Oolitic was created by the industry that removed limestone, shaped it, and then shipped large slabs of stone for construction across the nation. As a result, numerous quarries were established in tiny communities spread across the state’s southern portion.

It is astounding how many well-known structures were built using Indiana limestone. The Pentagon, the Washington National Cathedral, and the Empire State Building are among the most notable buildings on the list.

In the second part of the 20th century, glass and metal started to replace stone as the preferred materials for skyscrapers and other buildings. The shifting fortunes of these generational stonecutters did not spare Oolitic’s Empire Quarry, since this unavoidably caused an economic decline that continues to this day in numerous towns around southern Indiana.

As a result, numerous quarries, notably the enormous Empire Quarry, were left empty and abandoned.

Central State Hospital

Built as a psychiatric institution on a 100-acre plot of property west of downtown Indianapolis, Marion County’s Central State Hospital was founded in the middle of the 1800s.

Killer Urbex said that there were two distinct apartments on the hospital’s site, one for each gender of patients. There was also a pathology department, a recreational center, a bakery, a building for the treatment of medical ailments, and more on the property.

Prior to that, the location was known as the Central State Hospital in 1926 and the Central Indiana Hospital for the Insane in 1889.

The hospital reportedly housed 2,500 patients at one point in time in addition to hundreds of employees.

In 1994, the school finally shuttered due to financial difficulties and accusations of patient maltreatment.

Zoom Flume

Today, anyone who happens onto Bloomington’s Zoom Flume will discover a sizable slide decorated in vibrant graffiti.

This slide was a feature of a waterpark that was a hit in the late 1970s and early 1980s near Lake Monroe, according to Freaking Travel.

Even if the reason for the park’s shutdown is yet unknown, a visit is highly recommended.



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