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The Best Irish Bar in All 50 States

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You can find an Irish pub in just about every town in America, but when St. Paddy’s Day rolls around, where should you celebrate in true Celtic fashion? We’ve gathered together 50 of the best Irish pubs in America to help you figure it out. Below are our picks for the best places to grab a perfect pour of Guinness in every state. Sláinte!

1. ALABAMA // CALLAGHAN'S IRISH SOCIAL CLUB

Location: Mobile, Alabama

Callaghan’s is worth the visit for more than just the beer. It’s been named the best bar in America by Esquire magazine, one of the best small music venues in the south by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, and one of America’s best places to get a burger by Travel+Leisure, among others. Located in a historic neighborhood, it’s been open since 1946, when, according to the current owner, it was a private lounge where you had to either ring a buzzer or have a key to get in.

2. ALASKA // MCGINLEY'S PUB

Location: Anchorage, Alaska

Irish pubs are few and far between in Alaska, but McGinley’s Pub in Anchorage is always a steady place to grab a Smithwick’s or a Jameson. The bar has an extensive menu that places Celtic favorites like soda bread alongside creative interpretations like tacos stuffed with corned beef and cabbage. The bar hosts live music regularly, including traditional Irish music, as well as events like limerick contests.

3. ARIZONA // RÚLA BÚLA IRISH PUB

Location: Tempe, Arizona

To get a sense of Rúla Búla’s vibe, just look at its name: the phrase is taken from a Gaelic expression for "uproar and commotion." It’s got a popular patio, live music, and some of the best fish and chips in the Phoenix area. The vintage relics imported from Ireland that line the walls give it an authentic Celtic feel, even for a bar located in a 19th-century saddle shop.

4. ARKANSAS // DUGAN’S PUB

Location: Little Rock, Arkansas

Dugan’s Pub is a neighborhood joint perfect for grabbing a beer and watching the game. Besides serving "proper" pints of Guinness and Smithwick’s (20 ounces instead of 16), Dugan’s has an extensive cocktail list (both warm and cold) and serves three meals a day. It comes highly recommended as a weekend brunch spot, so there’s really no reason to ever leave.

5. CALIFORNIA // TOM BERGIN'S

Location: Los Angeles, California

During the 1800s, Irish immigrants flocked to California in search of Mexican land grants and gold. Tom Bergin’s, which holds one of Los Angeles’ oldest liquor licenses, has been operating since 1936 and claims to have brought Irish coffee to America (years before a San Francisco bar claims to have done the same). The ceiling of the bar is famously covered in cardboard shamrocks bearing the names of regulars from over the years. Bartenders have to vote unanimously to award a regular their shamrock, and if you make it up on the wall, you’ll join a celebrity list that includes Kiefer Sutherland and Cary Grant.

6. COLORADO // THE IRISH SNUG

Location: Denver, Colorado

Denver’s Irish Snug harkens back to the historic Irish institution of a "snug," a small, private room in a public bar that had frosted windows so patrons couldn’t be seen inside. You paid more for drinks inside the snug, but you wouldn’t be seen carousing, either. The Irish Snug has a spacious front bar, but it also has a traditional snug—you can go inside the tiny room and order your drinks by ringing a buzzer, just like those 19th-century Irish women who didn’t want to be spotted drinking in public. Out in the main room, the bar has European soccer playing all day every day and weekly Irish music sessions where you can take part in traditional jigs and reels.

7. CONNECTICUT // ANNA LIFFEY'S

Location: New Haven, Connecticut

The bartenders at Anna Liffey’s pour a certifiably perfect pint of ale, according to its award from Guinness’s St. James Gate Brewery in Dublin. The bar was founded in 1997 by Patrick Mansfield, who grew up cleaning tables at his father’s pub in Ireland (which was attached to their house). The Liffey has since become a local institution. It has been voted as the best pub in New Haven, with an award-winning bar menu, and fans describe it as the city’s version of Cheers.

8. DELAWARE // KELLY'S LOGAN HOUSE

Location: Wilmington, Delaware

Kelly’s Logan House in Wilmington is the state’s oldest Irish bar, and its proprietors claim it’s the country’s oldest continuous family-owned Irish bar. The pub is housed in a three-story brick building, originally built in 1864 as a hotel called the Logan House. (Gangster Al Capone and gunfighter "Wild Bill" Hickok are rumored to have been guests.) Two Irish immigrants, John D. "Whiskers" Kelly and his wife, Hannah Golden Kelleher Kelly, purchased the building in 1889 and converted its ground floor into a tavern. Passed down through family generations, Kelly’s Logan House is today owned by John D. Kelly’s great-grandson, Michael Kelly, along with his mother, Loretta Kelly.

9. FLORIDA // MCGUIRE'S IRISH PUB

Location: Pensacola, Florida

McGuire’s Irish Pub serves standard Irish food and drinks (and was once named Steak House of the Year). But what really sets the restaurant apart is the story of its founders, McGuire and Molly Martin. The Martins established their bar in 1977, with McGuire serving as cook and bartender and Molly, a talented singer, entertaining guests by singing classic songs in addition to working as a waitress and hostess. In 1982, the pub moved to its permanent location inside an old 1920s firehouse and became famous among locals, thanks in part to the Martins' warmth and hospitality. Early on, Molly established one of the restaurant’s most iconic traditions: After receiving her first tip, she signed her name onto the dollar bill and pinned it to the back bar. Today, the bar says it has more than one million dollar bills, signed by people of Irish descent, covering the restaurant’s ceilings and walls [PDF]. Just make sure you don't get sticky fingers after polishing off a few pints.

10. GEORGIA // KEVIN BARRY'S PUB

Location: Savannah, Georgia

Last year, the Irish Pubs Global Federation—an international professional network for Irish pub owners and managers—honored Kevin Barry’s Pub as the "Most Authentic Irish Pub" in the world. Even though Savannah is thousands of miles away from the Emerald Isle, the choice is apt: Instead of simply celebrating leprechauns, shamrocks, and all things lucky, Kevin Barry’s wall decorations pay homage to Irish revolutionaries, heritage, and history. The bar is named after Irish freedom fighter Kevin Barry and was founded November 1, 1980, on the 60th anniversary of the 18-year-old's execution. Any given night of the week, patrons can enjoy authentic live Irish music, played by visiting entertainers.

11. HAWAII // MURPHY'S BAR & GRILL

Location: Honolulu, Hawaii

The island of Oahu is a far cry from the rainy Old Country, but Murphy’s Bar & Grill in Honolulu keeps the motherland’s spirit alive. The saloon/eatery opened in 1987, inside a historic 19th-century hotel that’s rumored to have once counted King Kalākaua and writer Robert Louis Stevenson among its guests. While Murphy’s offers patrons an assortment of classic Irish beers (in addition to Irish and American foods), the establishment’s real draw is its annual St. Patrick’s Day block party, which reportedly draws thousands of people each year.

12. IDAHO // MICKDUFF'S BREWING COMPANY

Location: Sandpoint, Idaho

There’s nothing quite like a perfectly poured pint of Guinness, but if you live in Idaho and want to expand your horizons (or palate), try visiting the Irish-themed MickDuff’s Brewing Company. Located in the lakefront city of Sandpoint, MickDuff’s—named for its founders, brothers Mickey and Duffy Mahoney—offers pub food and microbrews. Swing by their separate production hall and tasting room to sample some local brews like the Idaho Arm Curl, the Tipsy Towhead Blonde, or the Irish Redhead.

13. ILLINOIS // CHIEF O'NEILL'S PUB

Location: Chicago, Illinois

Chicago is particularly proud of its Irish-American heritage, and Chief O’Neill’s Pub & Restaurant pays homage to Chief Francis O’Neill, an Irish immigrant who served as the city’s Chief of Police from 1901 to 1905. (O’Neill also founded the city’s Irish Music Club of Chicago, and collected, transcribed, and published thousands of traditional Irish tunes to help preserve the art form.) In addition to Irish food and drink, the pub frequently offers live Irish music, hosts a popular weekly pub quiz, and is decorated with memorabilia from the Old Country, courtesy of co-owner Siobhan McKinney, who still has relatives in County Cork.

14. INDIANA // THE IRISH LION RESTAURANT & PUB

Location: Bloomington, Indiana

Bloomington resident Larry McConnaughy opened The Irish Lion Restaurant & Pub in 1982 inside a restored 19th-century tavern, hotel, and—according to legend—brothel. Today, the bar serves up classic Irish dishes like mutton pie and corned beef and cabbage, in addition to more modern fare like burgers, salads, and club sandwiches. As for the Irish Lion’s drink menu, it lists more than 160 small-batch bourbons, Irish whiskeys, and Scotches—and patrons aren’t the only ones enjoying the goods: The Irish Lion is reportedly haunted, and come closing time, bartenders are asked to leave a shot of whiskey at the end of the bar to appease any lingering spirits.

15. IOWA // SULLY'S IRISH PUB

Location: Des Moines, Iowa

Irish brothers Jerry and Kevin Sullivan opened Sully’s Irish Pub in 1977. Since then, the bar has changed hands through several different owners, but save a few minor renovations, it still maintains its original appearance. Each St. Patrick’s Day, Sully’s erects a giant, heated tent and hosts a party for hundreds of town residents, complete with bagpipes, drums, drink specials, and more. But if locals simply want to swing by for a pint or two, Sully’s door is quite literally always open: The establishment stays in operation 365 days each year.

16. KANSAS // MARFIELD'S IRISH PUB

Location: Leavenworth, Kansas

Before Marfield’s was a pub, the building served as the carriage house for a local mansion in the late 19th century before being converted in 1903. Today, Marfield’s serves Irish classics like bangers and mash and corned beef and cabbage (and nearly every brunch entree comes with a side of potatoes O'Brien).

17. KENTUCKY // THE IRISH ROVER

Location: Louisville, Kentucky

Pub owner Michael Reidy isn’t the only Irish import patrons will find at The Irish Rover (they boast that "the owner's brogue comes direct from County Clare"). The bar serves a handful of authentic Irish beers on tap, including Harp Lager, Smithwick’s Irish Ale, and Guinness Stout, as well as dozens of varieties of Irish whiskey. As for the menu, items like the Shanagarry Fish Cakes take their recipe straight from the Irish Ballymaloe Cookery School, and locals recommend ordering a scotch egg with your pint.

18. LOUISIANA // FINN MCCOOL'S

Location: New Orleans, Louisiana

Named after the legendary giant of Celtic folklore, Finn McCool’s has been offering booze and grub in a genuine Irish setting since 2002. The pub is a popular neighborhood spot for watching soccer games taking place in the U.S. and overseas (they have both indoor and outdoor screens, and post full game schedules on their site). It also hosts regular trivia nights, Scrabble tournaments, and Irish dancing performances. Still not convinced that Finn McCool’s is the real deal? In 2015, The Irish Times named them one of the world’s top 10 Irish bars outside of Ireland.

19. MAINE // BLACK BEAR CAFE

Location: Naples, Maine

Irish native John Bohill brought a piece of his home to Naples, Maine when he opened Black Bear Cafe there in 2002, and each year he takes a group of American tourists to Ireland to see the sights and drink in the atmosphere. The pub evokes the feeling of the "public houses" of southern Ireland, with perfectly poured pints of beer, a bar stocked with whiskey, and live Irish music on the weekends. And you can't miss the establishment’s signature dessert—a chocolate orange cake made with Guinness.

20. MARYLAND // THE JAMES JOYCE

Location: Baltimore, Maryland

The James Joyce Irish Pub and Restaurant is as authentically Irish as the writer it’s named after. The structure itself was designed and fabricated in Ireland before it was shipped to Baltimore in 2002, and the pub prides itself on being "Baltimore’s Home of Irish Hospitality." It’s a great spot for enjoying traditional Irish fare—like the beef and Guinness stew or the Irish lamb stew—or for enjoying discounted booze on "Wednesday Whiskey Nights."

21. MASSACHUSETTS // PLOUGH & STARS

Location: Cambridge, Massachusetts

Plough & Stars is one of the hippest literary landmarks in the Boston area. Philip Roth drank there, the founders of the journal Ploughshares used it as a meeting place, and even famous Irish poet Seamus Heaney paid regular visits. Writers and non-creative types alike will enjoy the hearty food, refreshing pints, and nightly live performances the pub has to offer.

22. MICHIGAN // CONOR O'NEILL'S

Location: Ann Arbor, Michigan

Conor O’Neill’s is the place to go in Ann Arbor for a foamy pint of beer. Their draft menu alone includes 23 selections, six of which are imported from Ireland, like the Kilkenny Cream Ale or the Magners Cider. Also imported from Ireland? The entire front of the pub, which was designed as a traditional "pub shop," where locals would pop in to buy local eggs and milk while grabbing a beer with friends.

23. MINNESOTA // RED'S IRISH PUB

Location: Swanville, Minnesota

Retirement didn’t last long for high school sweethearts and Swanville locals Kelly and Bryan Allen. The couple used their newfound free time to open Red’s Pub five years ago, and it’s since become the most beloved Irish bar in the state. The establishment is a popular spot for playing indoor bar games and nursing beers on the patio during the summer months.

24. MISSISSIPPI // FENIAN'S PUB

Location: Jackson, Mississippi

A lively atmosphere and solid drink selection have made Fenian’s a local favorite for years. What sets it apart, though, is a food menu that offers traditional Irish dishes made with locally sourced ingredients—and often, with a twist. Never had Cajun-spiced corned beef and cabbage, or Irish chicken curry with Delta Blues rice? Here’s your chance.

25. MISSOURI // JOHN D. MCGURK'S

Location: St. Louis, Missouri

What began as a one-room pub in 1978 has expanded into a 20,000 square-foot celebration of Irish food, drink, and culture, right in the heart of St. Louis's downtown Soulard bar district. McGurk's slings more Guinness than any bar in the state, and patrons can usually count on live music direct from Ireland (plus, rumor has it the musicians tend to sleep above the bar, so they rarely stick to the usual set time limits). There’s also an enormous outdoor garden area that offers a more contemporary setting in which to enjoy brews and traditional Irish dishes like the potato soup and soda bread (though you'll also want to order a plate of the toasted ravioli, a regional delicacy).

26. MONTANA // CELTIC COWBOY

Location: Great Falls, Montana

Located in a former livery stable that dates back to 1890, this bar honors one of Great Falls’s pioneering citizens, Robert Vaughn, a.k.a. the "Celtic Cowboy," the first European immigrant in the region. Stay over in the adjacent Hotel Arvon (named for "R. Vaughn"), then come back the next morning for some Corned Beef O’Brien or Irish porridge.

27. NEBRASKA // BRAZEN HEAD PUB

Location: Omaha, Nebraska

The name Brazen Head Pub derives from Dublin’s oldest bar (which dates to 1198 CE)—a place that was frequented by soldiers and revolutionaries for centuries. In order to capture some of the spirit of its namesake, Omaha's Brazen Head was designed in Dublin and constructed in Wexford, then shipped to the U.S. where its installation was overseen by Irish joiners. After marveling at all the history, make sure to order a cold brew and a boxty, a traditional Irish potato cake.

28. NEVADA // CEOL IRISH PUB

Location: Reno, Nevada

"It’s traditional, not trendy" is Ceol's mantra, and it holds to that ideal with a robust selection of Irish whiskeys—from Two Gingers to Yellow Spot to a brand called, simply, Feckin. There’s plenty of beer on tap, too, and spirited service that’ll keep your drink filled, whatever your fancy. Naturally, a place named after the Gaelic word for "music" has plenty of live acts, including many traditional Irish performers.

29. NEW HAMPSHIRE // MAY KELLY'S COTTAGE

Location: North Conway, New Hampshire

Old world to its core, this small-town pub hosts weekly seisiuns, or sessions in which traditional Irish musicians come from far and wide to play together. Enjoy a cold Guinness while you watch the jam each Sunday, or head out to the back deck and marvel at the view overlooking the Saco River while eating calves liver with onions or a ploughman's dinner steak.

30. NEW JERSEY // MCGOVERN'S TAVERN

Location: Newark, New Jersey

In 1936, County Cavan native Frank McGovern opened this Newark establishment as a place for Irish immigrants to meet up, dance, and enjoy a pint or two. Back in the day, he even enforced a strict dress code on the men, ensuring they were wearing suits and ties before heading to back rooms to converse with the ladies. Eighty years later, McGovern’s is still known as a gathering place, where construction workers, college students, and business suits converge and enjoy some beers and pub grub.

31. NEW MEXICO // TWO FOOLS TAVERN

Location: Albuquerque, New Mexico

The Two Fools name jokingly refers to the two owners after their years-long quest to build an authentic Irish pub in New Mexico—and one with a fireplace, no less. After enjoying the craic (say, a stout and some fish and chips, accompanied by "the merriment of friends"), though, you’ll probably think they’re pretty smart. And naturally, they offer some Breaking Bad themed merchandise, which is also pretty smart.

32. NEW YORK // AN BEAL BOCHT CAFE

Location: Bronx, NY

Called "an oasis of creativity and music" by The Irish Times, An Beal Bocht embodies the Irish spirit of community and welcome. The bar takes its name (Gaelic for "the poor mouth") from the title of a classic novel by Flann O’Brien and has become a hub for local artists, offering an art gallery and theater space in addition to live music.

33. NORTH CAROLINA // TRA'LI

Location:  Brier Creek and Morrisville, North Carolina

Helmed by County Galway-born chef Eamonn Kelly, Tra’Li prides itself on its relaxed, friendly atmosphere, its top-rate drink menu, and, of course, its satisfying food. Kelly has perfected pub standards and Irish classics alike, from the Irish Egg Rolls, filled with corned beef and cabbage, to the Molly’s Sister—chicken cutlets stuffed with bacon and herbed cream cheese and served with a Tullamore Dew sauce.

34. NORTH DAKOTA // BLARNEY STONE PUB

Location: Bismarck, North Dakota

Patrons looking for a livelier evening can’t miss the Blarney Stone Pub in Bismarck. The bar’s dark wood furniture, hearty bar food (their peasant soup—or soup of the day—is served in a sourdough bread bowl), and friendly atmosphere can get rambunctious in the evenings as the volume gets turned up on conversation and music alike.

35. OHIO // THE HARP

Location: Cleveland, Ohio

A homey bar with a lovely view of Lake Erie, The Harp is the place to go for good music, good conversation, and good food. Weekly live music performances, an Irish brunch, and a wide drink menu have earned it spots on multiple lists of the best Irish bars in the country, and its large outdoor seating area makes it perfect for savoring a mixed draught (like a Snakebite—part Angry Orchard Cider and part Harp) on a fair-weather day.

36. OKLAHOMA // KILKENNY'S IRISH PUB

Location: Tulsa, Oklahoma

If St. Patrick’s Day has got you longing for rustic, hearty Irish fare, look no further than Kilkenny's in Tulsa. In addition to an extensive drink selection, the pub offers an impressive heart- and belly-warming menu of Irish classics like cottage pie, corned beef and cabbage, and an Irish breakfast, as well as more creative options like a Tullamore Dew cheese torte and Oysters Graiguenamanagh (good luck ordering that on the first try!).

37. OREGON // KELLS IRISH RESTAURANT AND PUB

Location: Portland, Oregon

Kells Irish has four locations, but its Portland Pub is the only one with a cigar room hidden in the city's infamous Shanghai Tunnels underneath the main pub. It also boasts of Pacific Northwest twists on classic Irish food and the region's largest selection of single-malt Scotches and whiskeys, making the pub (and its rumored resident ghost) particular favorites.

38. PENNSYLVANIA // BILLY MURPHY'S IRISH SALOON

Location: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

There are hidden gems, and then there’s Billy Murphy’s Irish Saloon, tucked happily into a mostly residential neighborhood in East Falls, Philadelphia. The community favorite, which is now run by Billy's wife and his son, melds a friendly Irish atmosphere and drinks menu with standard local fare like cheesesteaks and hoagies.

39. RHODE ISLAND // DOHERTY'S EAST AVE IRISH PUB

Location: Pawtucket, Rhode Island 

You could try a new beer a couple of times a week at Doherty’s East Ave Irish Pub and it would still take months to get through their selection. With 83 different varieties on tap and another 80 bottled options, plus a hearty bar menu full of wings, steak tips, and chili made with Murphy's Irish Stout, the pub knows how to satisfy its patrons.

40. SOUTH CAROLINA // DUNLEAVY'S PUB

Location: Sullivan’s Island, South Carolina

Family owned and operated for over 20 years, Dunleavy’s continues to stand out in a sea of chain "faux" Irish pubs in the tourist-friendly beach area of Sullivan's. Stop in and you might get a chance to overhear the pub’s "Liar’s Club," a group of regulars who come in for drinks and to tell increasingly outlandish stories in an effort to top one another.

41. SOUTH DAKOTA // MCNALLY'S IRISH PUB

Location: Sioux Falls, South Dakota

Home to some very solid pub burgers, McNally’s succeeds in bringing the small details of a conventional Irish pub to South Dakota. Fireplaces adorn the premises, and private rooms allow small parties to socialize over drunken mussels away from the noise. They’re also renowned for knowing exactly how to pull a draft of perfect Guinness—when you’re not ordering one of their original brews, that is.

42. TENNESSEE // MCNAMARA'S

Location: Nashville, Tennessee

Established in 2010, McNamara’s has quickly garnered national acclaim for its devotion to the classic Irish look and feel of a watering hole. Check out its historic photographs, live music (heavily curated by owner Sean McNamara, who spent years as a traveling musician and fronting local house bands), and menu full of classics like bangers and mash and bread pudding (which also includes a "Leprechaun Menu" for any wee lads and lassies).

43. TEXAS // FADÓ IRISH PUB

Location: Austin, Texas

Who says Irish pubs need to be frozen in time? A popular destination for Austinites, Fadó (which is Gaelic for "long ago") combines a classic Irish pub food menu with sustainably caught cod from Iceland and custom-cut meat fresh from Vermont. You’ll also find four distinctly designed areas inside, including an ornate Victorian pub and space inspired by the general-store element of classic Irish hangouts.

44. UTAH // PIPER DOWN

Location: Salt Lake City, Utah

The owners originally wanted to name Piper Down "Temple Bar," after the famous Dublin neighborhood, but encountered tense resistance from Mormon locals who opposed using the word "temple" to denote anything other than a house of worship. But since 2003, Piper Down has emerged as Utah’s most respected Irish-themed destination. Plus, they offer a sizeable vegan menu, alongside their beer-battered Alaskan fish and chips and various wraps and salads.

45. VERMONT // RED FOX INN

Location: Bondville, Vermont

Conceived as a "bed and brew," the Red Fox Inn has been a Vermont institution for decades, serving up pints in a nine-room inn that was once a three-story barn. Their famous apple pie has been hailed as the best in the state and can be enjoyed along with braised lamb shank. The Inn is said to move more Guinness in Vermont than any other pub.

46. VIRGINIA // SAMUEL BECKETT'S IRISH GASTRO PUB

Location: Arlington, Virginia

With a surplus of actual Irish employees, owner Mark Kirwan boasts of having the most authentically Irish pub in the state. Backing him up is the fact that virtually every piece and fixture of Samuel Beckett’s was purchased in Ireland and shipped over in 42 containers. Kirwan and his family also spent time working for Guinness, ensuring a healthy knowledge of how to deliver the best beer.

47. WASHINGTON // MULLEADY'S

Location: Seattle, Washington

In the mood for a Guinness beef pot pie? Mulleady’s has you covered. The gastro pub focuses on seasonal ingredients for their food menu to complement their drink selection. Once you’ve imbibed, you can check out their regionally famous urinal, which was rescued from an old Seattle theater circa the 1920s. (Women can ask a staff member to accompany them for a viewing. Seriously.)

48. WEST VIRGINIA // THE IRISH PUB ON WASHINGTON STREET

Location: Lewisburg, West Virginia

With its no-frills approach to pubbing—it doesn’t even bother with a clever name—The Irish Pub has been voted the best in the region time and again in reader and media polls. Open seven days a week, it hosts a popular trivia night and features some surprising Louisiana flavors like hot sauce on its corned beef hash or red beans and rice listed right next to potato leek soup: its owners are originally pub owners from New Orleans.

49. WISCONSIN // COUNTY CLARE IRISH INN AND PUB

Location: Milwaukee, Wisconsin

With gorgeous stained glass surrounding its "Saint's Snug," a burning woodstove, and a massive wood bar, County Clare serves up the perfect Irish ambiance to go along with their standout Guinness—they pour so much of it that it’s always fresh. Or, if you prefer beer cocktails, they serve six variations, including the Lady Guinness (Guinness and Chambord) and a Black Vanilla Bean (Smirnoff Vanilla and Guinness).

50. WYOMING // PAT O'HARA BREWING

Location: Cody, Wyoming

Named for a 19th-century trapper who met the town's namesake, "Buffalo Bill" Cody, on at least one occasion, Pat O’Hara Brewing serves up 15 craft brews from the region. Soak it up with the local-favorite Irish sandwich, piled high with corned beef. Patrons can even watch the brew tanks churning on the main floor.

By Michele Debczak, Kirstin Fawcett, Shaunacy Ferro, Kate Horowitz, Jake Rossen, and Jeff Wells.

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The Smallest Town in Each of the 50 States
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From a central Florida enclave where the mermaids outnumber the residents to the town that changed its name to Joe, Montana, there’s a lot of quirky history in America’s least populated places. We’ve combed the country to find the most interesting tiny town in each state—ranging in population from one to more than 1000. Some entries describe the state’s smallest incorporated town, while others highlight the smallest census-designated place. We picked the one with the wackiest, cutest, or most surprising story.

1. MCMULLEN, ALABAMA // POPULATION: 9

In 2000, McMullen was one of the only all-black towns in America, with a population of 66. But a series of recent natural disasters has pushed residents away, from Hurricane Katrina in 2005 to an EF2 tornado that destroyed 13 homes in February 2016. Now only nine people remain in the rural western Alabama town, according to a 2016 population estimate from the Census Bureau.

2. HOBART BAY, ALASKA // POPULATION: 1

Moonrise on Hobart Bay

Commander John Bortniak, NOAA Corps (ret.) // Wikimedia Commons

David Jorgensen has Hobart Bay all to himself. The 62-year-old has been the sole caretaker for the abandoned logging camp, accessible only via floatplane or boat, for nearly a decade. He used to live in Hobart Bay with scores of neighbors before the logging dried up in the late ‘90s. The population plummeted from 187 in 1990 to just David Jorgensen by 2010. Now Goldbelt, Inc., a former logging company which owns 30,000 acres in and around Hobart Bay, wants to turn the place into a cruise ship destination and clam farm.

3. JEROME, ARIZONA // POPULATION: 455

Jerome holds simultaneous claims as the smallest incorporated municipality in Arizona and the largest ghost town in America. Founded in 1876, the city grew out of a copper mining camp into the fourth largest city in Arizona Territory. Workers poured in to climb down the town’s mine shafts and extract as many as 3 million pounds of copper each month. The vast number of saloons and brothels that cropped up to cater to the miners in their off-work hours led the New York Sun to dub Jerome “the wickedest town in the west” in 1903. Today, Jerome’s small population of artists, shopkeepers, and hospitality workers bring the ghosts of its past to life for visiting tourists.

4. MAGNET COVE, ARKANSAS // POPULATION: 5

Magnet Cove was named for the abundance of magnetite (lodestone) in its soil, which early settlers discovered when they felt their plows and other tools strangely attracted to the ground. It remains a popular site for rockhounding thanks to its unusually rich [PDF] diversity of minerals. Today, the only businesses in Magnet Cove are a gas station and two novaculite quarries. (Novaculite is a mineral used to make whetstones, and Magnet Cove produces some of the purest novaculite in the world.)

5. VERNON, CALIFORNIA // POPULATION: 209

Vernon was founded in 1905 as an “exclusively industrial” city just south of downtown Los Angeles. Until 2015, Vernon housed about 1800 businesses employing roughly 55,000 workers —but was home to only 100 residents. The city kept its population low on purpose. All residences were owned by the city government, which evicted its political rivals and tore down houses to prevent newcomers from moving in. This enabled a ruling family to control the electorate, run the city “like a fiefdom,” and pay one city administrator a salary of $1.65 million one year. In 2015, under threat of dissolution from the state, Vernon agreed to adopt a series of reforms, including the construction of a new privately-owned apartment building that doubled the city’s population.

6. BONANZA, COLORADO // POPULATION: 1

Bonanza got its name in 1880 from silver miners who thought they’d struck it big. Over the next few decades, Bonanza grew into a copper, zinc, and silver mining boomtown, home to thousands of miners, two hotels, seven dance halls, a newspaper, a candy store, and even a baseball team. Today the town is mainly a summer vacation getaway. Although as many as 200 people own property in Bonanza today, only one man lives in town year-round: Mark Perkovich, a retired hotshot firefighter who moved in 22 years ago seeking solitude.

7. UNION, CONNECTICUT // POPULATION: 843

Trees reflected in Bigelow Pond in Union, Connecticut

Jesse Goodier // Wikimedia Commons

Founded on rough terrain with poor soil, Union was the last town settled east of the Connecticut River. James McNall, the town’s first settler, arrived from Ireland in 1727, and Union was officially incorporated in 1734. Legend has it that the town got its name because it was formed from the “union” of leftover plots of land that surrounding towns hadn’t incorporated. Today Union is a quiet residential community that prides itself on its scenic hills, trees, and wildlife.

8. HARTLY, DELAWARE // POPULATION: 71

After 280 years of townhood, Hartly faced an existential crisis in 2014. The town had no functioning government. It hadn’t collected taxes in two years. And it was somewhere between $20,000 and $36,000 in debt—no one knew exactly how much the town owed because Hartly had stopped paying for the P.O. box where it received its bills. To make matters worse, a former treasurer, convicted in 2004 of embezzling $89,000 from Hartly’s coffers, still hadn’t repaid the town for his theft. Then in December, more than 100 people, mostly out-of-towners, assembled at the local fire station to come up with a plan to save Hartly. They formed a new council and got to work reviving the town, inspiring the 2016 documentary A Hope for Hartly.

9. WEEKI WACHEE, FLORIDA // POPULATION: 5

Weeki Wachee is home to a state-estimated five human beings—and roughly 28 mermaids. More than 250,000 visitors drive each year to the small central Florida town, an hour north of Tampa, to see the Weeki Wachee Mermaids perform 30-minute live shows in Weeki Wachee Springs State Park. The show began in 1947, when a navy veteran named Newton Perry figured out a way to breathe underwater using an air hose and a compressor. He built an underwater theater into the springs’ limestone and sought out “pretty girls” to train as mermaids. Today, the mermaids swim and dance alongside manatees, otters, turtles, and even alligators, stopping only occasionally to catch a breath through tubes at the bottom of their tank. The mayor of Weeki Wachee, Robyn Anderson, is a former mermaid.

10. TATE CITY, GEORGIA // POPULATION: 16

Tate City, according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, “isn’t really a city, more an assortment of fancy, second-home homes owned by Atlantans and Floridians and more utilitarian houses for residents working in Clayton or Dillard.” The town sprang up around a ruby mine that once attracted more than 1000 residents, and later switched to logging. (A man named Tate owned the biggest logging camp, hence the name.) After the loggers stripped Tate City of its forests, they moved on and left little behind. The sleepy town didn’t get electricity until the early 1970s.

11. MANELE, HAWAII // POPULATION: 29

Evans / Getty

Manele is the site of the Four Seasons Resort Lanai, on Hawaii’s sixth largest island. Through most of the 20th century, Lanai was the site of the Dole pineapple plantation, once the most productive in the world. But today, 97 percent of the island belongs to Larry Ellison, founder of the software firm Oracle and the fifth-richest person in the world. Ellison bought the land, along with a third of Lanai’s housing, the water utility, two resort hotels, the cemetery, and most other businesses in a single real estate deal in 2012. He plans to turn the island into a luxury resort destination for the super-rich, prompting concerns for the future of the island’s residents.

12. WARM RIVER, IDAHO // POPULATION: 3

Warm River became a city thanks to a quirk in Idaho’s 1947 liquor laws that restricted liquor licenses to establishments within municipal borders. That year, Fred Lewies, an Estonian immigrant who owned and operated the Warm River Inn and Rendezvous Dance Hall, incorporated the city so that he could legally serve drinks at his bar. The town has had three mayors: Fred’s wife Berta, their daughter Lillian, and their granddaughter Lonnie. Today, Warm River still has its dance hall, but it’s also a fishing destination and a stop for tourists on their way into Yellowstone National Park.

13. MOONSHINE, ILLINOIS // POPULATION: 1

There’s one business, one house, and one person in Moonshine, and they’re all under one green tin roof. Helen Tuttle owns the Moonshine Store, a country store and restaurant she operates out of a century-old building in the middle of Eastern Illinois farmland. Each day, Tuttle serves 140 Moonburgers to customers visiting from surrounding farms (and sometimes ranging from the far flung corners of 50 states and 45 countries). The burgers aren’t very elaborate. Tuttle serves a gas-grilled beef patty on run-of-the-mill buns. But guests are invited to jazz them up themselves from a condiment table featuring mustard, mayonnaise, onions, hot pickle relish and horseradish. For years, Moonshine had a second resident: Roy Lee, Helen’s husband. But Roy died in 2015, and now Helen lives alone in the six rooms above the Moonshine Store.

14. NEW AMSTERDAM, INDIANA // POPULATION: 27

New Amsterdam was born and nearly destroyed on the banks of the Ohio River. Until 1937, the town thrived on the riverbank. It had two general stores, its churches’ pews were packed, and the houses along the river held upwards of 400 people. Then a 1937 flood wiped out most of the city and drove many of its residents away for good, but the remaining folks didn’t give up. In 2015, New Amsterdam celebrated its bicentennial.

15. BEACONSFIELD, IOWA // POPULATION: 15

US astronaut Peggy Whitson tests her space suit before blasting off to the International Space Station
Kirill Kudryavtsev / Getty

Beaconsfield may be tiny, but it punches above its weight class in terms of bragging rights. The Iowa town was the birthplace of the Hy-Vee grocery store chain, which operates more than 240 stores in the Midwest. The founders Charles Hyde and David Vredenburg (Hy-Vee, get it?) opened their first store in Beaconsfield, right at the onset of the Great Depression in 1930. Beaconsfield is also astronaut Peggy Whitson’s hometown [PDF]. In April 2017, Whitson broke the NASA record for most total days in space (at the time, 534). She’s also the first woman ever to command the International Space Station twice. 

16. FREEPORT, KANSAS // POPULATION: 5

Freeport is a dwindling town that refuses to go softly into the night. For years, the town boasted in its motto that it was “the smallest incorporated city in the United States having a bank.” But the bank left in 2009. Two years later, the post office tried to leave, too, but Freeport residents put up a fight. They petitioned the U.S. Postal Service to review its decision and hung a sign in city hall, housed in the abandoned bank building, urging visitors to “Help Keep Our Post Office—Buy Stamps.” Ultimately, the USPS was no match for Freeport’s residents. The post office remains, along with a grain elevator, a church, and five stubborn Kansans.

17. SOUTH PARK VIEW, KENTUCKY // POPULATION: 7

South Park View is quickly disappearing beneath the air traffic of Bowman Field. Since 1994, the Louisville Regional Airport Authority has been buying up homes and relocating residents under the path—and wall-to-wall noise—of arriving and departing planes. Over two decades, the program bought out more than 2000 homes at a cost of more than $260 million. But seven holdouts in South Park View have refused to accept the voluntary buy-outs.

18. MOUND, LOUISIANA // POPULATION: 18

Mound got its name because its founders built the town on top of a Native American burial mound. A century ago, Mound was a collection of cotton plantations owned by a few landed families. In those days, a planter named George S. Yerger controlled 50,000 acres and paid his workers in a made-up currency they could only spend at his company store. He also acted as town sheriff and kept prisoners in a subterranean jail buried under his store. Today, corn and soybeans grow in the fields, but the same families still live in their ancestral homes and own much of the land. Margaret Yerger, who is married to George Yerger’s grandson, is mayor.

19. HIBBERTS GORE, MAINE // POPULATION: 1

A gore is an unincorporated area, usually created when land surveyors make mistakes that leave irregularly shaped hunks of unaccounted land between town boundaries. In Maine, Hibberts Gore is home to one resident, Karen Keller, who lives 100 yards from the nearby town of Palermo. Curious reporters have been seeking her out for stories since the Boston Globe ran a profile on her in 2001, but Keller doesn’t like the attention. “These people from these big papers come. Why? What have I done? It’s a bunch of lines on a map. Nothing else.” Keller told Sunday Salon in 2013. “What have I accomplished? What have I ever done to make anyone’s life better? What good for the planet? What good for people? What good for anybody? Why? It’s hogwash.”

20. PORT TOBACCO, MARYLAND // POPULATION: 13

In the 18th and 19th centuries, Port Tobacco was Maryland’s second largest port and the seat of Charles County. Historians say it rivaled Williamsburg and Philadelphia among colonial ports, and that George Washington used to pass through town regularly on his way to see his doctor. Today, Port Tobacco still operates under an 1888 charter that bars women from holding office, imposes a $1 tax on every dog and prohibits any resident from allowing “his swine to run at large within said village.” Mayor John Hyde, a mortician by trade, told the Washington Post in 2006 that the town never got around to changing those laws, but it doesn’t enforce them anymore.

21. GOSNOLD, MASSACHUSETTS // POPULATION: 75

An 1858 landscape of Cuttyhunk Island by painter Albert Bierstadt

Albert Bierstadt // Wikimedia Commons

Gosnold comprises the Elizabeth Islands off the southern coast of Massachusetts. Most residents live on the island of Cuttyhunk, the town seat. According to news reports, in the summer Cuttyhunk’s population can swell up to 400, but in the winter, the island’s 150 golf carts far outnumber its 20 year-round residents. Cuttyhunk is home to a one-room schoolhouse with one teacher and two students. It is only accessible by a ferry which in the winter runs twice a week across Buzzards Bay, carrying food, fuel, mail, and people.

22. POINTE AUX BARQUES, MICHIGAN // POPULATION: 10

Pointe-Aux-Barques Lighthouse
Cliff Kinney // Wikimedia Commons

Pointe Aux Barques is a resort town on the tip of the thumb of Michigan’s mitten. It got its name in 1665 from French priest Claude Alouez, who thought the rocky coast resembled the prow of a ship. From 300 BCE to 600 CE, the land Pointe aux Barques would occupy was a sacred place for an ancient indigenous culture. After its disappearance, the land went unoccupied for a millennium until European colonists showed up and began logging the forest in the 17th century. In 1896, railroad baron Stanford Crapo built a resort, connecting Pointe aux Barques to wealthy Detroit families who fled to the rural township in the summer.

23. FUNKLEY, MINNESOTA // POPULATION: 10

Green Funkley Road Sign
Ed Kohler // Wikimedia Commons

Funkley mayor Emil Erickson will serve anyone who visits his town a drink—provided that they go to the Funkley Bar and Lounge, which he owns, and pay using Funkley Bucks, a made-up currency with his face on it that he prints and doles out to tourists. Erickson presides over the bar with his dog Chopper, who likes to sit on a stool next to the patrons. In the fall, big crowds of hunters visit. In the summer, Funkley gets bikers. Otherwise, there aren’t many new faces in Funkley. The city’s population recently doubled to its current 10 residents after a five-person family moved in.

24. SATARTIA, MISSISSIPPI // POPULATION: 53

Satartia’s main claim to fame is the Satartia Bridge over the Yazoo River in the Mississippi Delta. Its concrete, steel, and rust aesthetic has landed it on a website that catalogues ugly bridges. But most infamously, a team of paranormal investigators has claimed the Satartia Bridge is haunted: They saw mysterious floating flights, heard phantom moans, and smelled rotting flesh coming from the water in 2003. They suggested the source could be the indigenous Yazoo people, who according to legend were marched into the river to their deaths after refusing to surrender to the conquering French. Another theory claims the river is haunted by the crew of one of the 29 ships sunk here during the Civil War.

25. BAKER, MISSOURI // POPULATION: 3

Baker is tiny— less than a quarter-square-mile of land. But the town’s only family farms 3,300 acres of rice, soybeans, and wheat in fields that extend beyond Baker’s boundaries. Mark Rinehart took the land over from his father, Max, and now works it with his son, Eric. Mark told the Missouri News Scene his proposal for boosting the U.S. rice market in 2014: “Drink more beer, eat more rice, or both.”

26. ISMAY, MONTANA // POPULATION: 21

Ismay wasn’t always named Ismay. Until the 1910s, the town was called Burt. Then a railroad division superintendent renamed the place Ismay, a mashup of his two daughters’ names, Isabella and Maybelle. Then, in 1993, as part of a Kansas City radio station’s publicity stunt, the town agreed to change its name to Joe, Montana, in honor of the NFL quarterback who had just been traded to the Chiefs. Sports Illustrated picked up the story, and soon the town was selling hundreds of “Joe, Montana” t-shirts, coffee mugs, and golf balls. More than 2000 visitors descended on the town the first time it hosted “Joe Day.” And the Kansas City Chiefs flew the entire town down to see a game and hang out with Joe Montana. When Ismay ended the stunt eight years later, the town had enough money to buy itself a new fire truck and build a community center—named for Joe Montana.

27. MONOWI, NEBRASKA // POPULATION: 1

Elsie Eiler is all that’s left of Monowi, the only incorporated town in America with one inhabitant. She is the mayor and the owner of the Monowi Tavern, the only business in town. She lives half a mile away from the bar in a mobile home. Each year, she taxes herself to raise the money to keep Monowi’s four streetlights on. For decades, there was another resident in Monowi: Eiler’s husband Rudy, an avid reader. He died in 2004. The next year, Elsie built a library behind the tavern and stocked it with 5000 books. The library was her husband’s lifelong dream, and Elsie dedicated the building to Rudy.

28. CALIENTE, NEVADA // POPULATION: 1108

The land that would become Caliente was first settled in the early 1860s by Ike and Dow Barton, two escaped slaves from Arkansas. For a while the place was called Culverwell, after Charles and William Culverwell, who owned a ranch on the land. In 1901, when Union Pacific and another railroad got into a territory dispute over who could lay down track in a narrow canyon near the ranch, William Culverwell ended the land battle “with his shotgun.” He gave Union Pacific the right to build a railroad grade through his property and the rival company dropped its claim. The town quickly grew to more than 5000 residents thanks to the train depot. It was renamed Caliente after the discovery of nearby hot springs.

29. DIXVILLE NOTCH, NEW HAMPSHIRE // POPULATION: 8

A man casts his ballot in Dixville Notch's midnight primary election in 2016
Alice Chiche // Getty

The residents of Dixville Notch have cast the first votes in every U.S. presidential election and primary since 1960. Thanks to an obscure New Hampshire law, voting precincts with fewer than 100 voters can open their polls at midnight on election day and close them as soon as everyone has cast their vote. A local hotelier started driving his employees to the polls at midnight in 1960 as a publicity stunt for his resort. The polls closed at 12:07 a.m., and the town became the first precinct to report election results. It wasn’t long before presidential candidates began visiting Dixville Notch every four years.

30. TAVISTOCK, NEW JERSEY // POPULATION: 5

A group of golfers founded Tavistock in 1921 to evade blue laws in nearby Haddonfield that banned sports on Sundays. When 19 former members of the Haddonfield Country Club got fed up with the restrictive rules, they incorporated Tavistock, a quarter-mile splinter of Haddonfield. There they created a new country club with a new golf course, which stays open seven days a week. The Tavistock government also lets its country club sell liquor, which is illegal in Haddonfield.

31. WHITES CITY, NEW MEXICO // POPULATION: 7

Kentucky teacher Charlie White founded this town near the entrance of Carlsbad Caverns National Park in the 1920s. White built tourist accommodations on the only road in or out of the park. “White’s Cavern Camp,” a collection of 13 visitor rooms, a gas station, and a house for his family, grew into Whites City. White’s children and grandchildren eventually added a theater, a saloon, and a museum of curios including a stuffed two-headed snake. In 2008, the White family auctioned off the entire city for $1.55 million. (Before the final auction, the family listed it on eBay for $5 million.) The new owners sold Whites City again in April for an undisclosed sum.

32. OIL SPRING RESERVATION, NEW YORK // POPULATION: 1

A Franciscan missionary named Joseph DeLa Roch D’Allion made the first recorded mention of oil in North America here in 1627. The Seneca and earlier indigenous peoples knew about the oil long before, and used the spring’s petroleum-laden waters for medicinal purposes. The U.S. federal government officially recognized Oil Spring as a Seneca reservation at the end of the 18th century, but by the 1850s white squatters, including future New York governor Horatio Seymour, had taken up residence. The Seneca waged a legal battle to evict the squatters and have retained control of the land ever since [PDF].

33. DELLVIEW, NORTH CAROLINA // POPULATION: 13

In 1925, the Dellinger family had a problem: stray dogs kept raiding their chicken coops and killing their poultry, but local laws prevented them from shooting the mongrels on sight. Luckily, they had a cousin in the state assembly. That year, state representative David R. Dellinger proposed a bill to incorporate the town of Dellview, populated almost exclusively by Dellingers. The town never collected taxes, provided a police force, or offered water or sewer services. But it did pass a local ordinance that made it legal to shoot stray dogs. In 1978, no one in Dellview responded to a Census Mapping Survey and the state declared the town inactive.

34. RUSO, NORTH DAKOTA // POPULATION: 4

Ruso was founded in the early 20th century by protestants from Ukraine who wanted to escape the influence of the Russian Orthodox church. Many took homesteads for farming and ranching in North Dakota. By 1910, 71 percent of the state’s population was first- or second-generation immigrants. The new arrivals named Ruso nostalgically, either after a Russian word meaning “south of us” or a combination of the first letters in SOuth RUssia.

35. RENDVILLE, OHIO // POPULATION: 36

Rendville is a former coal mining town with an outsized influence on the history of labor and civil rights in the U.S. Founded in 1879 by William P. Rend, the town quickly gained notoriety as a place where black men could get work as coal miners. Rend hired black and white workers in large numbers, despite violent threats from white miners in neighboring towns. Rendville produced the first black man and woman to serve as mayors in Ohio—Isaiah Tuppins and Sophia Mitchell—along with the country’s first black woman postmaster general, Roberta Preston. Adam Clayton Powell Sr., pastor and cofounder of the National Urban League, and Richard L. Davis, cofounder of the United Mine Workers of America, both worked in Rendville.

36. LOTSEE, OKLAHOMA // POPULATION: 2

George Campbell had been letting Boy Scouts and church groups camp on his ranch for years. But in 1963, the nearby cities of Tulsa and Sand Springs were racing to annex as much surrounding land as possible, and Campbell worried that if either city gobbled up his ranch, he would have to follow local ordinances prohibiting the campers. So he filed to incorporate a new town and named it after his daughter, Lotsee. Today, Lotsee Spradling and her husband Mike are the only two residents in town and their ranch takes up nearly all of its area.

37. GREENHORN, OREGON // POPULATION: 2

With an elevation of 6306 feet, Greenhorn is Oregon’s highest city. Founded during an 1860s gold rush, Greenhorn now serves as a vacation retreat and hunting outpost for a handful of part-time residents. Two people, Joyce Pappel and Ron Bergstrom, account for the town’s entire permanent population. Greenhorn collects no taxes and has no sewers, power lines, or police.

38. CENTRALIA, PENNSYLVANIA // POPULATION: 5

A smoking crack opens in a highway near Centralia, Pennsylvania caused by underground coal fires
Don Emmert // Getty

In 1962, a trash fire in Centralia’s dump spread into an underground coal seam and wouldn’t stop burning for the next two decades. In 1981, a 12-year-old boy was nearly sucked into the subterranean inferno when the ground gave out beneath him. Two years later, Congress set aside $42 million to buy out the town’s 1100 residents, but nine holdouts refused. After another two decades, they won the right to stay in their homes. Those that remain alive are Centralia’s last residents.

39. WATCH HILL, RHODE ISLAND // POPULATION: 154

Watch Hill is a blue-blooded beachside village—home to the Ocean House, a grand hotel built here just after the Civil War—where wealthy families have spent their summers for more than a century and resisted letting newcomers into their enclave. But in 2013, nouveau-riche pop star Taylor Swift plunked down $17.75 million in cash for a 16-room waterfront mansion. For the rest of us, one of two Watch Hill beaches is open to nonresidents.

40. JENKINSVILLE, SOUTH CAROLINA // POPULATION: 43

A nuclear reactor in Jenkinsville, South Carolina at sunset

DJSlawSlaw // Wikimedia Commons

Jenkinsville successfully installed sidewalks, curbs, and streetlights through federal grants. But Jenkinsville is also the site of a slightly larger construction project: two nuclear reactors. Joining its existing 30-year-old reactor is a pair of new 1117-megawatt reactors, the first such structures built in the U.S. in three decades. They’re scheduled to start running by 2021, and each will provide enough electricity to power 640,000 homes.

41. HILLSVIEW, SOUTH DAKOTA // POPULATION: 2

It might be hard to find Hillsview, a half-square-mile patch of territory near South Dakota’s northern border. There used to be two signs that pointed toward the town from the highway, but vandals stole one of them, and the county took down the other down, reasoning that they couldn’t direct drivers to a place with no services to speak of. Now Hillsview’s two residents, a mother and son named Helen and Cletus Imberi, use the town’s only revenue—a small transportation allotment—to keep the Hillsview’s eight streetlights on, which illuminate their home, an abandoned school, and a hardware store.

42. SAULSBURY, TENNESSEE // POPULATION: 112

Saulsbury used to be renowned for its valuable sand. In the 1870s, the sand mining industry took off and the town shipped 47 different kinds of sand to nearly every state in the country.

43. LOS YBANEZ, TEXAS // POPULATION: 19

In 1980, Israel Ybanez snapped up an auctioned parcel of government land in western Texas with one goal: open dry Dawson County’s only liquor store. He incorporated the town in 1983, installed his wife as mayor, got his liquor license, and opened a take-out beer store. For three decades, Ybanez did brisk business as the only booze merchant for miles, eventually expanding to also sell wine and spirits. Ybanez died in 2014, but there are three liquor stores in Los Ybanez today.

44. BONANZA, UTAH // POPULATION: 1

Bonanza is a company town, owned by the American Gilsonite Co., at the center of the only commercial gilsonite mining operation in the world. You may not have heard of gilsonite, but this shiny black subspecies of asphalt is the stuff that shades the ink in your printer and seals your car to keep dust from drifting in from the road. Most of the company’s 225 workers live 48 miles away in Vernal, but Bonanza still encompasses 26 houses, processing plants and administrative buildings.

45. NEWFANE VILLAGE, VERMONT // POPULATION: 113

Newfane Village is a small incorporated enclave within the larger town of Newfane—a cluster of old, historic homes and small stores surrounded by forest. The settlement dates back to 1825 and its “village” status is a holdover from an archaic local government structure that Vermont abandoned by the 1930s. With its idiosyncratic government and its 60 white-clapboard, black-shuttered homes, Newfane Village has been described as a “microcosm of Vermont” and the “epitome of small-town New England.”

46. CLINCHPORT, VIRGINIA // POPULATION: 66

Clinchport started as a port for loggers transporting logs down the Clinch River to Chattanooga. The loggers rode the logs downstream, guided them into port at Chattanooga, and then hitched a ride back to Clinchport to chop down another tree. The town grew until 1977, when the Clinch River flooded and washed away many of its homes and businesses. Clinchport was never rebuilt. Today the Clinch River is renowned for its biodiversity. With over 130 species of fish and 40 species of mussels—many of them threatened or endangered—it is the most biodiverse river in the country.

47. KRUPP, WASHINGTON // POPULATION: 49

The town of Krupp was incorporated in 1911 and still officially bears that name—but everybody calls the place Marlin, because of a grudge against the Germans that dates back to World War I. During that conflict, the German Krupp gun factory manufactured much of the artillery the Axis powers fired on Allied soldiers. Queasy about this association, the town started calling itself Marlin, after John Marlin, the town’s first white settler.

48. THURMOND, WEST VIRGINIA // POPULATION: 6

William D. Thurmond, a former captain in the Confederate army, got 73 acres of land along the New River Gorge in 1873 as payment for his work as a surveyor. With rich coal fields and access to a nearby railroad junction, Thurmond’s property quickly attracted miners and merchants from across West Virginia. Saloons and gambling houses quickly followed. The town of Thurmond came to be known as the “Dodge City of the East” and was described as “hell with a river through it.” As the coal industry dried up, so did the town, until only five residents remained by 2015. That year, Thurmond became the smallest town in America to unanimously ban housing and employment discrimination against LGBT people.

49. ODANAH, WISCONSIN // POPULATION: 13

Odanah is the seat of government of the Lake Superior Tribe of Chippewa Indians on the Bad River Reservation. During the 1850 Sandy Lake Tragedy, 400 Chippewa died of disease, starvation, and cold when the federal government tried to force them to relocate west of the Mississippi. In 1854, the government granted the tribe permanent reservations in Wisconsin. Today, the Bad River Band has more than 7000 members, most living on the roughly 125,000 acres of undeveloped land in the reservation.

50. (PHINDELI TOWN) BUFORD, WYOMING // POPULATION: 1

All of Buford belongs to Pham Dinh Nguyen, a Vietnamese businessman who bought the place solely to promote his brand of gourmet coffee. He even unofficially renamed it PhinDeli Town Buford after the coffee. Nguyen, who reportedly walks around his native Ho Chi Minh City wearing a cowboy hat and calling himself “the mayor,” paid $900,000 in an online auction to buy Buford’s five buildings in 2013. He leases the town to a caretaker named Jason Hirsch, who runs a convenience store and gas station called the Buford Trading Post. It is the town’s sole business and the only place in America where you can buy PhinDeli coffee. Hirsch, however, doesn’t live in town. Buford’s one resident is Brandon Hoover, who lives in a modest house behind the gas station. Hoover shares Buford with a horse named Sugar, Buford’s unofficial mascot.

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The Best Dive Bar in All 50 States
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Dive bars are the perfect antidote to exorbitant cocktail prices and highfalutin mixologists who insist on putting a dozen ingredients into your whiskey sour. These casual, unpretentious spots serve a variety of inexpensive beers, cocktails, and (occasionally) snacks. Although there are tons of dive bars scattered across the country, we’re choosing the best dive bar in every state, based on the bar’s drink menu, reputation, and overall aesthetic.

1. ALABAMA // THE UPSIDEDOWN PLAZA

Location: Birmingham, Alabama

Founded in 1962, the Upsidedown Plaza might be the ultimate spot for good drinks and good times. It stays open until 2 a.m. every night, giving patrons plenty of time to play pool, dance to oldies, and sing karaoke.

2. ALASKA // SANDBAR

Location: Juneau, Alaska

Sandbar serves Alaskan beer on tap and delicious halibut fish and chips. The friendly bartenders, three pool tables, and golf game machine keep customers coming back.

3. ARIZONA // RIPS BAR

Location: Phoenix, Arizona

People come to Rips Bar to let loose and forget their troubles. Expect to find killer ales and cocktails, a fun rockabilly vibe, and bar games including pinball, pool, and darts. There’s also karaoke, open mic events, and all-day drink specials.

4. ARKANSAS // THE WHITE WATER TAVERN

Location: Little Rock, Arkansas

Head to this hole in the wall for strong whiskey, cheap beer, and live music. The atmosphere is eclectic, with tons of twinkle lights, graffiti on the walls, and a Miller Lite clock behind the bar. There’s also a canoe hanging from the ceiling.

5. CALIFORNIA // CLOONEY’S PUB

Location: San Francisco, California

Situated in the Mission district, Clooney’s Pub is a casual spot famous for its circular bar and friendly service. Happy hour starts bright and early—at 6 a.m.—and for entertainment, there's a pool table and TV.

6. COLORADO // THE SINK

Location: Boulder, Colorado

bar back at The Sink
The Sink

With $3 well drinks, $4 drafts, and $5 martinis during happy hour, the Sink knows how to please. Everyone from chef Anthony Bourdain to former President Barack Obama has visited the bar, which has been open since 1923. Order the bar’s legendary burger and pizza as you marvel at the trippy artwork on the walls and ceiling.

7. CONNECTICUT // THE HUNGRY TIGER

Location: Manchester, Connecticut

Originally a soda and ice cream shop, the Hungry Tiger is now a beloved dive bar and music venue. Sunday brunch features cheap Bloody Marys and Bud Light pitchers, and the spot serves delectable burgers, wings, and sliders.

8. DELAWARE // FAMOUS TOM’S TAVERN

Location: Hockessin, Delaware

With $3 beer and $4 wine and liquor, Famous Tom’s brings the boozy goods. The TVs play plenty of NFL games, so you can watch your favorite teams as you sip your drink.

9. FLORIDA // FREE SPIRITS SPORTS CAFE

Location: Miami Beach, Florida

Bartenders pour generously at this Miami Beach bar. After you knock back a few drinks, try the perfectly greasy chicken fingers and fries and relax in front of a sports game.

10. GEORGIA // NORTHSIDE TAVERN

Location: Atlanta, Georgia

North Side Bar
Daniel B., Yelp

Built in the ‘40s, Northside Tavern was a neighborhood grocery store and gas station before it morphed into a blue-collar bar. With live music seven nights a week and paintings on the wall dedicated to blues and jazz musicians, this dive bar is a music lover’s paradise.

11. HAWAII // HANKS CAFE HONOLULU

Location: Honolulu, Hawaii

Located in Honolulu’s Chinatown, Hanks Cafe Honolulu is a tiny bar with a big heart. The bartenders are friendly, the walls feature island-inspired portraits, and a jukebox and live music keep guests happily entertained.

12. IDAHO // WHISKEY RIVER

Location: Nampa, Idaho

Whiskey River has been around for almost a decade, offering a full liquor bar and tons of bottled beers. There’s a dance floor, darts, pool tables, and a jukebox, and the bar stays open until 1 a.m. every night.

13. ILLINOIS // THE DOUBLE BUBBLE

Location: Chicago, Illinois

People rave about the Double Bubble. The neighborhood bar serves craft beers at reasonable prices, and the TVs play plenty of football games. If you’re an Irish whiskey fan, be sure to get a Jameson shot.

14. INDIANA // CHECKERED FLAG TAVERN

Location: Indianapolis, Indiana

Checkered Flag Tavern
Linda M., Yelp

Checkered Flag Tavern has a great selection of draft beers, liquor, and burgers. Named for the Indy 500, naturally, the bar has plenty of non-alcohol related entertainment including a photo booth, pool table, darts, and live music on the weekends.

15. IOWA // THE HIGH LIFE LOUNGE

Location: Des Moines, Iowa

The High Life Lounge is a popular destination for beer aficionados. Lovers of Miller High Life (the “champagne of beers”) will especially love this bar, which has a ‘60s and ‘70s vibe thanks to the vintage beer signs and retro wood paneling. If you work up an appetite, try the fried dill-pickle spears and the cheese curds.

16. KANSAS // JOHNNIE’S ON SEVENTH

Location: Kansas City, Kansas

Established in 1934, Johnnie’s On Seventh has long been one of Kansas’ favorite watering holes. The retro vibe and friendly regulars will make you feel right at home, and the darts, shuffleboard, and popcorn machine will keep you entertained all night.

17. KENTUCKY // T. EDDIE’S BAR AND GRILL

Location: Louisville, Kentucky

If low-key bars that serve cheap beer are your thing, head to T. Eddie’s Bar and Grill in Germantown. With 42 craft beers, a fenced-in back patio, and karaoke nights, you can’t go wrong.

18. LOUISIANA // SNAKE AND JAKE’S CHRISTMAS CLUB LOUNGE

Location: New Orleans, Louisiana

Katie D., Yelp

Situated in a dark shack, Snake And Jake’s Christmas Club Lounge gives all who enter it the ultimate dive bar experience. Christmas lights illuminate the tiny space year-round, and the bar serves cheap local beers and shots every night (including Christmas).

19. MAINE // SPRING POINT TAVERN

Location: South Portland, Maine

Drink specials, good pub food, and live music? Check. Spring Point Tavern serves well drinks and Jell-O shots, and there are darts and pool to help guests unwind from the day’s stresses.

20. MARYLAND // BUCK MURPHY'S BAR

Location: Odenton, Maryland

Walking down the stairs to this basement dive bar will transport you to a simpler time and place. Everyone seems to know everyone else, and the cold beer and homemade spicy chili will make you feel right at home.

21. MASSACHUSETTS // THE VICTORIA BAR

Location: Greenfield, Massachusetts

The Vic is the ultimate place to down lagers, fireball shots, and Irish coffee while you watch a Red Sox game. The family-owned and -operated bar also has three big-screen TVs, a jukebox, and darts.

22. MICHIGAN // BANFIELD'S BAR

Location: Ann Arbor, Michigan

Banfield’s Bar opened in 1982 and has been drawing in locals ever since. The hole-in-the-wall serves strong drinks and tasty burgers, and it hosts events such as ‘70s karaoke nights.

23. MINNESOTA // SKINNERS PUB & EATERY

Location: Saint Paul, Minnesota

Owned by husband and wife duo Pete and Molly Skinner, Skinners Pub & Eatery is a laid-back bar that serves beer on tap, wine, tacos and pizza. The big TV screens by the bar, plus the low prices, make regulars come back again and again.

24. MISSISSIPPI // THE PROJECT LOUNGE

Location: Biloxi, Mississippi

Customers rave about the friendly service, strong drinks, and rib-eye steak sandwich at the Project Lounge. The dark, smoky dive bar has an electronic jukebox and is cash-only.

25. MISSOURI // THE HAUNT

Location: St. Louis, Missouri

The haunt
Terri Daniels

Billed as a tavern for the macabre at heart, the Haunt is a Goth-themed dive bar with $2 well drinks, $11 domestic buckets, a pool table, and live music. If Halloween is your favorite holiday, you’ll love the spooky décor and horror films playing on the TV.

26. MONTANA // THE RHINOCEROS

Location: Missoula, Montana

Since 1987, the Rhino has impressed customers with its beer and scotch selections. With 50 beers on tap and more than 50 single-malt scotches, this dive bar also offers pool, shuffleboard, and plenty of good times.

27. NEBRASKA // BEER CITY

Location: Omaha, Nebraska

Across from Hitchcock Park is Beer City, a bar that offers $2 fireball shots every Monday, $5 pitchers on Wednesday, and karaoke on Friday nights. There are also free peanuts and popcorn, pool and darts, 11 TVs, and mini-golf in the back.

28. NEVADA // DOUBLE DOWN SALOON

Location: Las Vegas, Nevada

double down bar exterior
Jonathon S., Yelp

Since 1992, Double Down has been a haven for people who want to break away from the pricey Vegas strip. Dubbed the anti-Vegas, this bar serves eye-popping drinks like the original bacon martini (Slim Jim garnish and all). There’s also pool, pinball, and live music.

29. NEW HAMPSHIRE // PENUCHE’S CONCORD

Location: Concord, New Hampshire

Penuche’s really promotes music and emerging artists. Bands play often and open mic opportunities abound. Whether you order beer or cocktails, this bar will put you in a partying mood.

30. NEW JERSEY // JIMMY GEEZ

Locations: Haledon and Oak Ridge, New Jersey

Jimmy Geez
Jonathan M., Yelp

Jimmy Geez dominates the north Jersey dive bar scene. You’ll find more than 20 beers on tap, chicken wings galore, and plenty of TVs tuned to sports games. Jimmy Geez also hosts live music and trivia nights, making it the ultimate hangout spot.

31. NEW MEXICO // SILVA’S SALOON

Location: Bernalillo, New Mexico

In 1933, a former bootlegger and moonshiner named Felix Silva opened Silva’s Saloon. Today, the biker bar is the longest continuously running business on historic Route 66. Dollar bills, raunchy photos, and old liquor bottles decorate the space.

32. NEW YORK // MILANO’S BAR

Location: New York, New York

Located on Houston Street a few blocks north of Little Italy, Milano’s Bar might be Manhattan’s best old-school dive bar. It’s been open since 1880! All-day-and-night specials include Tecate, Narragansett, and Rolling Rock.

33. NORTH CAROLINA // LOCAL BAR

Location: Apex, North Carolina

Local Bar began in the ‘30s as a gas station, but today it serves cold drinks to happy customers. Besides $1 Jell-O shots and Monday movie nights, the bar also has live music, pool tables, horseshoe pits, and dart boards.

34. NORTH DAKOTA // BORROWED BUCKS ROADHOUSE

Location: Bismarck, North Dakota

There’s something for everyone at Borrowed Bucks, from beer pong on Tuesdays to ladies’ night on Wednesdays (women can get $2 Schooners). Between sips of your beer, munch on the pizza and wings.

35. OHIO // BECKY’S BAR

Location: Cleveland, Ohio

Although Becky’s Bar is near Cleveland State University, it’s not just for students. Since 1986, Becky’s has served a diverse group of diehard customers who enjoy the PBRs and IPAs, mozzarella sticks, and arcade games. There’s also a jukebox, biweekly karaoke, and multiple big screen TVs that play football, baseball, and basketball games.

36. OKLAHOMA // ORPHA’S LOUNGE

Location: Tulsa, Oklahoma

Located in downtown Tulsa, Orpha’s Lounge is a small, welcoming joint with two pool tables and plenty of drink specials. Just be aware that some patrons still smoke inside.

37. OREGON // THE LOW BROW

Location: Portland, Oregon

Opened in 1998, The Low Brow might be the best place to unwind in Portland. The dimly lit bar discourages patrons from being glued to their screens, and the menu includes everything from nachos to kale salad.

38. PENNSYLVANIA // JAMES BAR

Location: Enola, Pennsylvania

For more than two decades, James Bar has served cheap drinks to thirsty Pennsylvanians. A neon Bud Light sign in the window greets customers, who can sip beer from Mason jars and play tunes on the bar’s jukebox.

39. RHODE ISLAND // CAPTAIN SEAWEED'S FAMILY PUB

Location: Providence, Rhode Island

Captain Seaweed’s is a true dive bar—and proud of it. The walls of the Fox Point bar feature nautical décor, making it the right place for people who like sipping beer near ship wheels, life ring buoys, pirate paraphernalia, and whale artwork.

40. SOUTH CAROLINA // TATTOOED MOOSE

Location: Charleston, South Carolina

the tattooed moose
Jimmy S., Yelp

Despite its extensive craft beer selection and tasty food, this downtown dive is down-to-earth and unassuming. Get the grilled cheese sandwich or the bar’s namesake burger, and wash it down with your choice of pale ales, pilsners, and porters.

41. SOUTH DAKOTA // THE THIRSTY DUCK

Location: Sioux Falls, South Dakota

The Thirsty Duck is a popular destination for affordable drinks, great pizza, and live music. You’ll find groups of friends and coworkers singing karaoke, playing pool, and tossing darts.

42. TENNESSEE // DINO’S

Location: Nashville, Tennessee

Dino's
Alex W., Yelp

As East Nashville’s oldest dive bar, Dino’s has built a rock-solid reputation as a top-notch spot. Beers include a selection of Coors, Budweiser, Stiegl, Yuengling, Miller High Life, and Tecate. Food options include cheeseburgers, fries, and fish and chips.

43. TEXAS // THE ABBEY UNDERGROUND

Location: Denton, Texas

This British tavern, located in Courthouse Square, has a little something for everyone. From imported beers and ciders to stouts and lagers, the Abbey Underground has an impressive alcohol menu. Different nights have musical themes ranging from big band and funk to disco trash and ‘90s dance.

44. UTAH // X-WIFE’S PLACE

Location: Salt Lake City, Utah

Having fun at X-Wife’s Place won’t break the bank, thanks to cheap beer cans and shots. Customers can play pool inside or head to the big outdoor patio to play cornhole.

45. VERMONT // OTHER PLACE

Location: Burlington, Vermont

Other place
Matt S., Yelp

Dive bar connoisseurs love Other Place (The OP), where there’s plenty of beer, mimosas, and Bloody Marys to go around. The sports-themed tabletops, pool table, and occasional movie nights make The OP a neighborhood institution.

46. VIRGINIA // LYNNHAVEN PUB

Location: Virginia Beach, Virginia

Friendly bartenders and a stellar selection of seasonal and Virginian craft beers make Lynnhaven Pub stand out from other bars. The mouthwatering brisket and barbecue tacos are also beloved.

47. WASHINGTON // THE MULE TAVERN

Location: Tacoma, Washington

Although the Mule Tavern serves an abundance of beer and cocktails, Moscow Mules are its specialty. Bartenders make ginger beer from scratch by juicing lemons and ginger, adding cane sugar and water, and carbonating the liquid. Moscow Mules are $4 during happy hour, and well drinks are just $3.

48. WEST VIRGINIA // THE BOULEVARD TAVERN

Location: Charleston, West Virginia

At the Boulevard Tavern, craft cocktails focus on bourbon and gin. You can’t go wrong with any of the bar’s signature cocktails, the best of which is the West Virginia Coal Rush, a honey-infused bourbon. Live music and open mic nights, as well as reggae Sundays, keep excitement levels high.

49. WISCONSIN // SILVER DOLLAR TAVERN

Location: Madison, Wisconsin

Less crowded than nearby bars, Silver Dollar Tavern has been a family-owned bar since 1933. The shuffleboard, darts, and pool are a big hit with loyal customers. The bar is cash-only, but there’s an ATM inside.

50. WYOMING // THE BUCKHORN BAR & PARLOR

Location: Laramie, Wyoming

Buckhorn bar
RunAway B., Yelp

The Buckhorn Bar is older than you. It’s been around since 1900, and today visitors can see the bar’s famous bullet hole, elk, and two-headed calf on display. Tuesday is $1 pint night, Wednesday is karaoke night, and Thursday is the night for $1 jack-and-Cokes.

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