A Return to the Quarry Ruins in the Ghost Town of Fiborn, Michigan
Under no circumstances should you enter any caves or abandoned properties seen in this article unless they are open to the public. You could possibly risk bodily harm and/or prosecution for trespassing on private property.
In Mackinac County, just north of the small town of Caffey, lies what was once the town of Fiborn, also known as Fiborn Quarry. The town no longer exists, except maybe for some old foundations, hidden in the woods or underbrush. But what is definitely still there is the old Fiborn Quarry. It's now part of a public nature preserve, so there doesn't seem to be any rule against trespassing.
The land is officially called the Fiborn Karst Preserve, a 500-acre hunk of land where the limestone quarry operated, beginning around 1900. The name 'Fiborn' is thanks to one-time Michigan governor Chase Osborn. In 1898 he and William Fitch bought land and ended up opening the quarry in 1904. They called it the “Fiborn” Quarry ('Fi' from 'Fitch' and 'born' from 'Osborn').
The village had a boarding house, general store, post office, school.....and only one telephone. They used the boarding house as their town hall, dance hall, and church,
With the Great Depression came doom on the horizon. Their transporting by rail gave way to the cheaper way by ships and boats. In 1935, the Fiborn Quarry and post office both ceased operations. One by one, the people and buildings of Fiborn Quarry just seemed to disappear into thin air.
Even though not being utilized, the quarry is still home to the ruins of the ore car loader and railroad house. Another interesting feature of this site is the inclusion of the longest cave in Michigan, the Hendrie Water River Cave. It's a narrow, dangerous cave with a river running through...to enter this cave you need a guide and permit. There are other caves here, as well as sinkholes and springs. Over 100 years ago, the residents used these caves to keep their food from perishing, like butter, eggs, milk, and beer.
Take Trout Lake Road to Fiborn Quarry Road and head north for a mile or two. You'll come to a fork in the road and it doesn't matter which one you take...both will lead you there. These are amazing Michigan ruins to explore, with trails to check out, along with the massive quarry itself. Posted signs allude to the fact that it's open to the public.....but always explore with caution and safety - do not explore alone. Always have another person with you.
The Fiborn Quarry Preserve