The 1882 Shadow Town of Levering: Emmet County, Michigan
While driving thru Emmet County on my way to Mackinaw City, I came across the little town of Levering. It's not a ghost town, but it seems to fall somewhere between 'shadow town' and 'small town'. It's not what it was over 100 years ago: a busy little village with a decent-size downtown business section. It also appears to have been a town that catered to tourists, with cabins and cottages for rent.
Levering was founded in 1882 as a train stop along the long-gone Grand Rapids & Indiana Railroad. The man credited to the town's creation goes to Robert Robinson of Cheboygan who purchased the land in 1881 for $158. The nearby town of Pellston was named after William Pells; Levering was named after a friend of his, Joshua Levering. The original name was Leverington, but once a post office was established in 1883, the town name was shortened to Levering.
The railroad and the busy crossroads made Levering an excellent spot for a town to grow. Soon, the town had a nice row of downtown businesses that catered to tourists, vacationers and residents...but the thriving eventually came to a halt. Once the railroad ceased coming through, that was basically the end of Levering's growth. Businesses left, some buildings were torn down, and in the 2020s just a few old structures are left, jotted alongside M-31.
I kind of liked the way the town looked, with the abandoned establishments, reminding us of how the town once was. The gallery below shows some nice old vintage photos of Levering from over 100 years ago...depicting shops and buildings of which the town will hever see again.
The Shadow Town of Levering in Emmet County
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