The abandoned town of Griffith
The abandoned town of Griffith

Silas Lapham Griffith started the Green Mountain Lumber Company in 1888. He owned about 1500 acres of forest in Peru, Vermont along Black Branch, where he built a steam sawmill and several charcoal kilns, which employed about 300 people. Originally called “Mill Village”, the town soon became known as “Griffith.” The town grew to include cabins, homes, a boarding house and a school. By 1912, the lumber and charcoal industries had exhausted the surrounding woodlands, and the town of Griffith was abandoned.

In 1917, the USFS repurposed the old town road for the Long Trail, The area became known as “Old Job” and early hikers began to take shelter in the abondoned buildings which became knows as “Griffith Camp.” Hikers also began camping in the old charcoal kilns, a mile north, which became known as “Kiln Camp

The 1920 Edition of the Long Trail Guide Book described Griffith Camps as a “once prosperous village, now only inhabited for a week or two in the autumn when the fern pickers camp there while getting ferns for shipments to the cities.

Silas Griffith's Lumber Mill
Silas Griffith’s Lumber Mill

Mt. Tabor-Danby Historical Society

Long Trail Guide Book 2nd Edition, 1920