The Ghost Town of Pokerville

Pokerville sprung up just after Ebenezer Brigham settled near Cave of the Mounds in 1828. During the Blackhawk War in 1832, it's residents scrambled to the hastily built blockhouse at Cave of the Mounds.

Pokerville was on the Lead Mine Trail of the 1830s from the lead mines around New Diggings to Milwaukee. It was soon a thriving town which boasted two inns, several stores, blacksmith, harness maker, and a doctor. Wagons loaded with lead passed by regularly on their way to Milwaukee.

As in most boom and mining towns, gambling was rife. In the language of the day, it was decided to call the town Pokerville. Fortunes were won and lost every night. Liquor flowed freely. Bloodshed and killings were not unknown.

Twenty years later, when the railroad came through a mile east of Pokerville, where the village of Blue Mounds is today, it doomed the little town. After the Civil War, the lead market crashed and the residents scattered. The little hamlet drifted into oblivion. In 1925, there was nothing left of the small little town.

The railroad trail is now called Military Ridge Recreational Trail.

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