|City, town or village
||889 feet (271 meters)
|Latitude (DMS format)
||Longitude (DMS format)
||Map on which this town can be found
|42° 26' 05"N
||83° 59' 06"W
The tiny community of Hell is located in
Livingston County, in southeastern Michigan.
Found approximately 60 miles west of Detroit,
the town sits in an area of lakes and waterways
popular with vacationers, anglers, hikers
and mountain bikers.
Residents, known as Hellions, largely embrace
their town's unusual name by organizing special
celebrations on Friday the 13th, and Halloween.
Hell-themed souvenirs are popular items with
visitors who sometimes travel hundreds of miles
out of their way so they can say they've "Been
to Hell and back." The notoriety of the town
and its bizarre name often draws the attention
of the media and particularly morning radio
shows on Friday the 13th, and especially
Over the years, a number of fun items have been
offered to promote the town and take advantage
of its infamous name:
* Dehydrated water from Hell Creek.
* An "Official Deed" to your very own square inch of Hell.
* A Bat Outta Hell (a baseball bat from Hell, Michigan).
* License plate brackets for your car that tell
the world to "Go to Hell, MI."
* A multitude of t-shirts with tongue-in-cheek
expressions such as "Hell Froze Over" (yes,
it does get very cold in Michigan), or "333:
Only half as evil."
* Scary Teddy Bears known as "Teddy Scares."
* One of the most unique gift items is a souvenir
diploma from the fictional "Damnation University" in Hell, Michigan.
* Even more amusing than the above Damnation college
degree is the opportunity(?) to serve as Mayor of
Hell for a day. You don't even have to sell your
soul to act as Mayor of Hell, Michigan!
Origin of its unusual name
There are a couple of competing stories about
the origin of the place name Hell, Michigan.
The leading account states that in the 1830s,
a pair of newly-arrived German travelers
commented to one another in German on what
a bright and beautiful day it was in the
village. The locals overheard their comment
"So schoene und hell!" and thus passed along
a humorous story of the foreigner's dubbing
the town "Hell." So, in 1841, when asked by
Michigan officials what he wanted the name
of his settlement to be, George Reeves, the
pioneer who settled the area, said, "Call it
Hell for all I care�"
The other theory is completely understandable
to anyone who's traveled through bug-ridden
wetlands at the height of summer. Frontiersmen
who traveled the waterways of the low and
swampy region at the peak of the mosquito
season were likewise thought to have called
the area "Hell."
Nearby cities and towns:
Detroit, Michigan (to the east)
Stockbridge, Michigan (to the west)
Lansing, Michigan (to the northwest)
Flint, Michigan (to the northeast)
Jackson, Michigan (to the southwest)
Ann Arbor, Michigan (to the southeast)
Time Zone: Hell, Michigan is in the Eastern Time Zone.
Over the years, points of interest in the region have included:
* Pinckney State Recreation Area, south of Hell, Michigan
* Waterloo-Pinckney Trail, southwest of Hell, Michigan
* Waterloo State Recreation Area, southwest of Hell, Michigan
* Brighton State Recreation Area, northeast of Hell
* Island Lake State Recreation Area, east of Hell
* Highland Recreation Area, northeast of Hell
* Proud Lake State Recreation Area, northeast of Hell
* Maybury State Park, east of Hell
* Lakelands Trail State Park
Lakes near Hell, Michigan
Appleton Lake, Big Portage Lake, Bishop Lake,
Blind Lake, Bruin Lake, Crooked Lake, Doyle
Lake, Four Mile Lake, Gosling Lake, Green Lake,
Half Moon Lake, Hiland Lake, Joslin Lake, North
Lake, Silver Lake, South Lake, Pickerel Lake,
Whitmore Lake, and Woodland Lake.
Recreational opportunities in the area
Camping, canoeing, kayaking, boating, fishing,
ice fishing, hunting, trapping, skeet shooting,
picnicking, swimming, wildlife viewing, photography,
mountain biking, hiking, cross-country skiing,
snowshoeing, snowmobiling, hot air ballooning,
golfing, metal detecting and horseback riding.
Wildlife found in southeastern Michigan
Deer, rabbit, squirrel, turkey, woodcock, pheasant,
quail, grouse, duck, and geese are amongst the varied
wildlife found in the fields, woodlands, hills and
wetlands of southeastern Michigan.
Anglers will find pike, trout, bass, catfish,
sunfish and panfish in area lakes, streams and
U.S. map showing the location of Hell, Michigan
For our list of other Hellish and scary towns,
visit U.S. town names associated with Halloween.
For an extensive list of other odd town names in the
United States, visit our page of unusual, bizarre or humorous names of towns.