MNN Galleries

12 U.S. places where your visit could double the population

Gross, Nebraska Community Hall

Photo: Wikimedia Commons

12 of 14

Gross, Neb.

Gross was established in 1893 by homesteader Ben Gross and his wife, who opened a general store there. In anticipation of the railroad coming through, a bustling town developed, and by 1904 Gross was home to multiple businesses, churches and factories, in addition to 600 residents. However, the railroad ended up bypassing Gross, and there was an immediate exodus. A few years later, two large fires destroyed most of the businesses and even more residents left. By 1970, only eight residents remained. Today, Mike and Mary Finnegan are the only two people who inhabit Gross, and their hotel, the Nebraska Inn, boasts almost 200 Facebook fans — more people than Gross has seen in a century.