Quirky Attraction: Michael Jackson’s birth home

michael jacksons birth home

Michael Jackson’s Birth Home
Location: Gary, Indiana (2300 Jackson St.)
When to visit: Anytime during daylight hours
Cost: Free
Time needed to enjoy: 5-10 minutes
Website: None

Five years ago today, the world lost one of its greatest entertainers of all-time when Michael Jackson passed away. Hundreds of fans went to his birth home in Gary, Indiana, to remember the singer and leave behind flowers, souvenirs and gifts.

Fans still come here every now and then to catch a glimpse of the tiny house where the Jackson clan grew up. And it really is tiny. From the outside, it looks like no more than four people could live comfortably in such a cozy space, but somehow Katherine and Joe Jackson raised nine kids here!

michael jacksons birth house

Quiz: How many of the Jackson kids can you name? I’m proud to say I can recall all nine. There are six boys – Michael, Jermaine, Tito, Randy, Marlon, and Jackie. And three girls – Janet, LaToya, and the forgotten one, Rebbie.

Since Michael died in June 2009, the house has been fixed up quite a bit, with flower gardens added out front, along with a large “King of Pop” stone monument.

mj monument

Gary is not the safest city in the world. In fact, let’s be honest – it’s one of the most dangerous cities in America. This part of Gary is still working class. Numerous abandoned buildings can be seen on neighboring streets, so you definitely don’t want to go wandering around aimlessly. But if you drive here during the day, you should be fine. Chances are you won’t be the only tourist at the house at any given moment.

mj rip sign gary indiana

Fan artwork and messages can still be seen on the side of the property, and I even spotted a single glove left on the fence out back.

glove on back fence

There’s not much else to see here, but it’s always a powerful feeling to visit a place where someone you admire spent many years of their life. If you’re looking for an excuse to stop by, the annual Michael Jackson Tribute Festival of the Arts takes place on the last weekend of August.

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About Scott Shetler

Scott is a Chicago-based journalist and blogger who seeks out quirky sights and awesome destinations throughout North America and beyond.

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