The aspect of lost cities is the fact that they're often tied to myth or legend, meaning no one is ever really certain regarding their existence. While there have been incredible underwater archeological discoveries in some areas of the planet, its not all discovery is likely to lead to the remains of a civilization. In the case of one Texas town, however, the evidence is plentiful and it is artifacts, well-preserved – when the ruins of it are visible, that is.
Old Bluffton was once a small town roughly an hour or so outside of Austin, Texas. If someone tried to visit it now, though, they'd be fairly disappointed – the city are only able to be seen when there's a severe drought in the region. Aside from that, it remains in its permanent home at the bottom of the man-made Lake Buchanan in Burnet, Texas. Although this fated ghost town was (mostly) abandoned prior to its flooding, but that doesn't mean its history isn't fascinating.
This may be the story of Texas' lost city, the flooded underwater ghost town formerly referred to as Old Bluffton.
The History Of Old Bluffton And just how It Became An Underwater Ghost Town
In to know what happened to Old Bluffton, one must first know about Franklin D. Roosevelt and also the New Deal which was set to revolutionize America's economy. This initiative was meant to improve public works and infrastructure even though the end game would be a bright light during the Great Depression, additionally, it included plans that would interfere with some American futures. In the case of Old Bluffton, this resulted in people who had settled in the Texas Hill Country town experienced a tough decision: where to move once their town was flooded.
The Buchanan Dam was coming, and it was an unstoppable project that will leave residents homeless lest they found somewhere to go prior to the floodwaters started rising. While the original projected estimate for the flooding was slated to occur over the course of many years, time would prove this could happen sooner rather than later. Rather, the flooding occurred within several months, which left some residents living within their homes by the time the amount of the encompassing lake began encroaching to their yards and houses.
The main option for most residents ended up being to sell their land towards the Lower Colorado River Authority. However, when the dam was carried out 1936, the region experienced torrential downpours that resulted in roughly 20 inches of rain, based on Culture Trip, flooding the city. This shortened your window from several years to several months, fast-tracking the dam and the man-made lake many years in front of its original completion date. Due to this, many residents were instructed to evacuate immediately, leaving their houses and lots of personal items behind, all of which would soon be under 30 feet water in Lake Buchanan.
The Drought That Exposed Old Bluffton
While a brand new Bluffton was established roughly seven miles away from the former Old Bluffton, this could not be the last anyone saw from the original town. A drought struck the region in 1984, that was so severe it caused water to recede down to where Old Bluffton sat at the end of Lake Buchanan. Some buildings and former homes were exposed, together with cotton gins, a graveyard, a bank, along with a hotel. This, of course, brought forth a wave of tourism by those wanting to see what Lake Buchanan had been masking for so long.
When a second drought struck in '09, it was more serious than the first. Historians from the Texas Historical Commission took the chance to further excavate the city, revealing historical artifacts that gave understanding of the short-lived town of Old Bluffton. However, just like any drought, the rains came back, and, once more, Old Bluffton resumed its place at the bottom of Lake Buchanan.
Visiting Lake Buchanan And Old Bluffton Today
Those interested in seeing this lost ghost town may be disappointed to know it only appears during severe droughts, where the water within the man-made Lake Buchanan recedes enough to show its underwater secrets. That doesn't imply that Lake Buchanan isn't worth visiting, though.
There are tours that bring people to the website of their watery grave, detailing the historical significance of these an underwater ghost town. As well as for those who have a nice day trip around the lake, it's an easy day drive from Austin, Texas – which is much more reason to visit this unusual tourist attraction!