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The Real Town of Silent Hill

January 19, 2015

Welcome to HellIt’s called Centralia, Pennsylvania, and while not what inspired the games it is the place that inspired the setting for the films and they share quite a few similarities.
Centralia is a near-ghost town in Columbia County, Pennsylvania. Its population has dwindled from over 1,000 residents in 1981 to 10 as of 2010, as a result of the Centralia mine fire burning beneath the town since 1962. All properties in the town were claimed under eminent domain by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania in 1992 (and all buildings condemned), and Centralia’s ZIP code revoked by the Postal Service. State and local officials reached an agreement with the remaining residents allowing them to live out their lives there, after which the rights of their properties will be taken…
Centralia has been used as a model for many different ghost towns and physical manifestations of Hell. Examples include Dean Koontz’s Strange Highways and David Wellington’s Vampire Zero, and, as stated, the film adaptation of Silent Hill.

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