Gross, Nebraska, and 9 Other Towns With Fewer Than 10 Residents

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Most everyone has an opinion on whether they’d rather live in a big city or a small town. We like the convenience, the hustle and bustle, or they crave the solitude and the quiet, and you’ll never convince me that the suburbs are somehow meant to be a combination of both.

There are small towns, though, and then there’s these 11 places, where one new family could double the size of the town.

#10. Picher, OK – Population 10

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Picher, OK was once home to around 20,000 people, but then toxic sludge from heavy metal mining contaminated the area in the 1980s.

Most residents took government buyouts while the cleanup was in process, and 158 of those who remained were injured or killed in a 2008 tornado.

Only 10 remained, happy to stay and source water from pre-tested wells.

#9. Tortilla Flat, AZ – Population 6

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This Old West relic exists in Tonto National Forest.

At the center of town is the Superstition Saloon and Restaurant, which is owned and completely staffed by the town’s six residents.

#8. Funkley, MN – Population 5

Image Credit: Ed Kohler

Mayor Emil Erickson is the barkeep, the mayor, and also prints his own currency like the Caesars before him.

The cash that bears his likeness, though, is only good at his tavern.

It hasn’t always been this small, though – at one point in the 1940s, a whopping 26 people called Funkley home.

#7. Lost Springs, WY – Population 4

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During the height of mining, Lost Springs was home to nearly 300 residents, but the community broke down when the industry dried up.

Now, they’ve got a town hall, post office, park, general store, and a few public bathrooms for those just passing through.

For a long time, the population was 1, until a family of three decided to move in down the road.

#6. Weeki Wachee, FL – Population 3

Weeki Wachee is home to three human citizens but plenty of mermaids, all of whom perform at the Weeki Wachee Springs State Park underwater theater.

The attraction has been around since 1947.

#5. Bonanza, CO – Population 3

Image Credit: Jeffrey Beall

Bonanza is another former mining town, and the few residents are kept busy with the elements and minding their property.

Colorado considered dissolving the town in 2014 but decided against it.

#4. Gross, NE – Population 2

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Limited railroad access and a few fires extinguished any chance Gross had to grow, and now it’s home to just Mike and Mary Finnegan.

They operate the Nebraska Inn inside the town limits, and have since 1985.

At the time they had a 5yo son, but he’s since moved on – but the restaurant at their inn gets rave reviews on Facebook.

#3. Swett, SD – Population 2

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Back in the 40s, more people called Swett home, but with no real employment opportunities, only Lance Benson and his wife remain.

He is a traveling salesman and they actually own the town and the bar.

He tried selling it in 2014 for $199,000, hoping to attract buyers with the promise that the “locals believe the residence to be haunted.”

#2. Buford, WY – Population 1

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Dan Sammons purchased Buford in 1992 and continues to be the town’s only resident.

He’s got a log cabin and a trading post, turning the place into a tourist attraction for people traveling to and from Yellowstone.

He sold it to Nguyen Dinh Pham in 2013, who hosts a Vietnamese coffee business and renamed the place PhinDeli Town Buford.

#1. Nothing, AZ – Population 0

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Nothing does have something – it’s home to a general store and part of a gas station, and a whole lot of dessert. Its incorporation in 1977 was an attempt to humanize an empty stretch of US 93.

The original residents trailed away one by one, the last moving after a failed attempt at a pizza parlor.

I don’t know about being the only resident in a place – that seems like a lot of pressure!

Would you live in a town this small? Tell us why or why not in the comments!