Why so many empty rural properties?

Posted: September 4, 2013 in CAUSES, TRAVEL / Gatherings
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Along all my travels I continue to witness proof that more and more people are being forced off their rural homelands.

In the Midwest the GMO giants Monsanto and their affiliates (ConAgra, DeKalb, Pioneer etc.)  pressure farmers into over paying for their seeds, fertilizers and other products by suing them for any property containing their unregistered products. These farmer’s fields are accidentally infected by cross pollination or stray seed infestation but yet they are held reliable instead of the seed company affiliates simply because Monsanto pays off all the law enforcers. This practice has bankrupt and evicted nearly half of the rural farms that once existed in 1988.


In the south and other drilling areas like North Dakota, the Petroleum Oil giants Exxon/Shell and their affiliates pressure land owners to sell their land or face eminent domain prosecution by either falsifying a catastrophe such as an oil spill or forest fire or pipeline failure. Nearly 25% of homes in rural Texas and Louisiana for example, are vacant and dilapidated. The Midwest is now under attack as well by Canada’s TransCanada KXL Pipeline. A project that will take highly unstable tar sand oil through the worlds largest underground fresh water Ogallala Aquifer and jeopardizing 50% of the USA’s drinking water.

In the Northeast and other areas it’s Natural Gas giants like Chesapeake Energy that are using the same tactics by injecting toxic chemicals into the ground water and allowing natural gas to mix into the water sources.

Forest Logging

I recently explored the lakes and trails around the Delaware Water Gap and Camp William Penn in the Poconos of PA. The Camp was funded by the City of Philly for low income youth and shut down after 88 years in 2008 because of the Bank Bail Outs. The state absorbed the property under the Delaware State Forest fund. Google earth shows the property being maintained but actually the cabins have all been gutted, all the pines have been logged down and the metal roofs removed for salvage by the State. Google earth does show the surrounding woods to the north in their current barren state with all the Pine trees removed however.

Read the articles and join me in concern for the sad state of many of the areas nature centers. This is just one of many I have found while exploring the Poconos, Lehigh Valley and the Water Gap’s State Forest holdings.




Camp William Penn


The Water Gap area is another example. A dam was proposed that affected 10 miles of the Delaware river north of Stroudsberg and the state forced all the residents out with eminent domain in the 1960’s. Hundreds of nice homes and historical rock barns and several resorts were all abandoned and the land was claimed under State Forest jurisdiction. The dam was voted down after 10+ years of battling but the state refused to allow the residents to return to their 200+ year old homesteads where their ancestors spent years clearing rocks and timber and leveling the land for foundations. In 1973 a judge ordered law enforcement to force out the remaining squatters. Today only about 5% of the properties have been maintained and the rest lay in shambles for hikers to shed a tear for or seek hidden refuge until noticed by a park ranger.


There is an increasing trend that city dwellers want to relocate an average of 30 miles away from city hubs while at the same time the rural livers are being pushed in the same vicinity. Inner city properties are increasingly vacant and dilapidated while developers continue to build new communities surrounding the hubs.


This practice is putting the US on a crash course for disaster by over consuming our natural resources instead of building upwards on top of our pre-existing structures. The only way to stop this train wreck is to stop buying these cookie cutter homes in new developments and force the builders to wake up to the destruction they are really causing.


ALL you have to do to see what future this trend is bringing down upon you is look at areas like China and Honolulu on google earth maps!

  1. Bill Deaton says:

    Much of the land around Camp William Penn suffered major Gypsy Moth damage. Many of the trees had succumbed to the ravages of the pest and were nothing more than standing dead. The dead trees were removed for salvage and also to help prevent future wildfire. Additionally, many were removed so as to allow DCNR and subcontractors safe access to the ex-camp property. The buildings were gutted and razed after hazardous materials such as asbestos were removed. Furthermore, decades of trash and building debris, left by the camp operation, is still in the process of being removed from the tract.

    • LOVE the reply Bill – Where did you find this information? You sound like you are experienced in the areas forestry. Can’t believe I missed this comment for 3 months due to spam filters. I am sending you a friend request on facebook.

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