NAME: Windy City
COUNTY: McKean County
CLIMATE: Snowy winter, no winter road maintenance
BEST TIME TO VISIT: Early spring through late fall
COMMENTS: Windy City is a pure ghost in the oil fields of the Allegheny Nat'l Forest, recognizable only because of its old power lines, the tall rows of pine trees lining the main street, and the various domestic shrubs and perennials growing wild in the old lawns. This is public land, so camping is permitted, and beer cans indicate that people do camp here. Oil derricks clang and pump in abandoned front yards, making Windy City a strangely eerie place after sundown. To get there, take PA 66 thru the Allegheny Nat'l Forest; 3 mi. south of Kane, turn west onto the well-marked road through James City. About 1.9 mi after the last house in lonely James City, this little road (Forest Road 325C) enters Windy City. Official maps of the Allegheny Nat'l Forest indicate that there are still five homes in Windy City, but good luck finding them.
REMAINS: Glass, wood, and metal artifacts in old yards
Windy City may have been a company town. It was a small industrial settlement in the forest, probably dedicated to one of the big three industries of the Allegheny region: timber, oil, or natural gas. Like most ghost towns in the area, it probably came on the scene somewhere between 1880 and 1920. Although it was not finally abandoned until the 1960s, there is little on record about its origins. Local people remember only family names, but nothing specific. Submitted by: Brian C. Snyder
Gone with the wind: Main Street, Windy City
Courtesy Bryan C. Snyder