The mine was built with stone, wood, and steel. It’s in good condition.
…when injection molding was the new thing that everyone was experimenting with.
An elevator is reflected in the flooded footprint of Spencer & Kellogg. These trains are in storage for the winter.
Near the guard post protecting the launch pad at the Duluth BOMARC is an orange windsock.
A jankey ladder leads to a platform over a wooden tank. Here’s hoping my usage contributes to jankey being accepted into the dictionary! Thanks, lexicographers.
Catwalk crating, welded over the yard crane operator cab’s windows.
That floor isn’t dirt–it’s old rotting grain that’s formed into a sort of moldy mud.
Peeling paint reveals the room numbers of the past. Kodak Trix-400 on Canon T40.
A high-voltage tunnel sheathed in concrete dips below ground near a shell packing building that now stores fireworks.
Instructional film strips on the floor of a second floor closer.
This is a room where the actual explosive elements were mixed. In the event of an accident, this glass wall would give way before the concrete and thus direct the flames and shockwave away from the rest of the building. In other words, the glass is not just to get a lot of wonderful natural light into the building.
Chester Creek takes many such sliding dives where it empties into Lake Superior.
Chutes connect the bottoms of the silos to a conveyor belt.
Looking at ADM-1 from beside ADM-4, back when ADM-4 had a train shed and ADM-1 had a skyway. In the thick woods beneath the skyway was a long time homeless camp… most of its residents were very friendly.
Looking toward a void–formerly a hallway to the mineshaft–now a hole in the ground.
This corner of the building was the coal room, used to feed the two big boilers inside. The steam equipment has been replaced with electric, so this section may not have changed much in the past decades.
Someone had helped themselves to one of the safety posters before my visit.
Water vapor was collected and condensed to be reused in other processes. Kodak Tri-X 400/Leica M7
Kodak Tri-X 400, Leica M7. Serious enough to write across the side of the tank, but not serious enough to have a sign made.
A shuttered house at the end of the block doesn’t even have boards on it anymore.
Let’s play a game called “FIND THE PIGEON”! There is one bird in this photo of dust collectors atop the King Elevator train shed.
An alarm panel in the powerpplant, now demolished.
These aluminum powder kegs were forgotten in storage.
This floor of the workhouse had corkscrew conveyors–big augers–in the floor to move material around. Most of the walls that were metal were missing, leaving the concrete structure and open doors.
The shed in the front was full of worker supplies–namely goggles and heavy leather gloves. Molten copper isn’t a friendly thing to handle.
At the end of a conveyor belt and poised over a loading station, it’s easy to image the tinny sound of chicken feed sliding across the metal. Like sand on the old-fashioned stainless steel playground slides.
Looking to the chapel addition from the Chateau.
Cracked gauges have a certain quality that hearkens to movies, I think. One can imagine the gauges going off the scales before dramatically cracking, throwing glass right at the camera. This damage, however, is unfortunate vandalism.
A back-lit tree with the silhouette of a roof spire in the background.
The Western Elevator’s old moniker looks over Fort William (the neighborhood). Snow falls over Mount McKay in the background. This elevator is still active… the only active elevator in Fort William proper.
This elevator was built in 1922 and was used until the passing rails were removed in the mid-1970s.
In an old ward, two men would have shared this room.
Graffiti by a crew member of the Algolake.
Soft rain on Vulcan’s ashy pyre… Both of these peaks are dead volcanos, too hard to be totally washed away by storms. As a result, they seem to rise dramatically from the flat valley.
For some time, tugboats were stored next to the elevator.
Rivets are sexy, and this old machine has more than a fair share.
Redlining is the practice of shutting certain races out of neighborhoods, and it is still a big problem today. Such behaviors were a big factor in creating the need for these projects.
The oldest part of this mill had a wooden roof that rotted away long ago. Slowly, rust is dulling the edge on every cog left behind.
One of my favorite shots from that year, conveyor line parts stacked and hung with Postal Service bins from decades ago.
The top floor of the Dominion Elevator. Acros 100 on 120.
The cupola–the space above the silos–is surprisingly original. The building was too unstable for anyone to scrap it out. Seriously, the floor is a deathtrap.
Generations of Two Harbors teens smoked their first weed in this abandoned building, in my estimation. Comment if I’m right!
Aluminum spools replaced their wooden counterparts, later in the factory’s history.
If there was a problem with the conveyor belt, the grain would go out these chutes.
A custom ladder to cross conveyor belts on the work floor.
The first floor of the Industrial Loft building.
This rockhouse was added below the shaft to load Gilpin Tram cars.
Some local kids were having a fire extinguisher fight when I walked into the lab one day.
A truck loading dock for raw materials. Looking at the concrete, you can sort of tell where the rails used to run.
This view of BCT shows the portico where the main entrance is at the base of the office tower, and the clock.
An article from Minnpost describes this design as “marital”, and I could not agree more.
Shells of mixing buildings.
A facade that tells the story of demolition and neglect. The sign on the garage door indicates that if one finds themselves there, that they enter the buildings at their own risk. If only property owners in the US took this philosophy!
The barracks are being reclaimed by nature.
This “pit” would allow workers to crawl below locomotives to service them.
These Twin Cities kisses
Sound like clicks and hisses.
We all tumbled down and
Drowned in the Mississippi River. -The Hold Steady
Scanned after being recovered from the bottom of an old wooden box for a few years. Circa 2005.
The last of four radar domes on the base.
One of the hundreds of wells across the depot, as seen through an open rail door. In the distance, the radome.
When a big motor rusted free of its ceiling mount, it smashed onto this workbench.
I wonder when fluorescent lighting was added.
What looks to be a skip for repairing the dock, in the concrete steeple.
Vents in the boards over the windows helps prevent mold and animals from getting too crazy inside.
The basement of the asylum was a strange place. Take, this fireplace, for instance, in an otherwise barren room. Random cinderblock (left) has created a little room behind the fireplace. To round out the strangeness, a toilet was plumbed into the middle of the space. Note the stone foundations.
Identical warehouses seem a little newer than the rest of the plant. I suspect these were added in the mid-1950s for the Korean War, during which about 200 buildings were added to the complex.
A long exposure of the launch pad and its dedicated guard shack. In the middle of the base is a tall antenna which was part of the MARS program during the Gulf War. The MARS program helped connect calls between deployed soldiers and their families.
I like to imagine this as fountain.
This is one of the modern nurse’s stations where the last inpatients lived in the mid-2000s. The windows are thick shatterproof plastic. I am unsure why the suspended ceiling is missing.
One of my favorite photos of the ADM-Delmar #1 skyway, when it stood. Taken at sunset, with the reflection of the overcast sky in the remaining windows.
A sign of where man met machine.
Looking out of the demolished skyway. Note the big hole in the floor. The lens is too wide to keep my foot out of it… I’m hanging in the superstructure that I climbed to make this photo.
A brewmaster’s desk leans beside a long-disused stainless steel kettle. The staircase above goes to another level of kettles, which are visibly older.
Halfway up the coal conveyor, covered in coal dust… black streaks of snot. Starting to get good.
We mark our world in unexpected ways… this is how patient possessions would be stored during their stay in the old asylum wards. It’s about the size of a shoebox, and this particular drawer has a name where the others do not. Its place reminded me of the hospital cemetery where more than 3,000 are buried and less than 1% of whom are recorded by stone or plaque in their resting place.
The roof could be vented when locomotives were running inside.
Many outdoor areas of the plant have become unofficial city dumps. The skeleton doesn’t care.
One of a few rolling workbenches to keep the thousands of pulleys, cogs, and belts working properly.
Another ruined spiral staircase in the mill.
A classroom, perhaps from the days when the city owned the building.
I wonder if these handcarts will become decoration for the hotel being building next to the silos.
A storm passes over BOMARC’s center row of launch buildings. You can clearly see the tracks on which the roof would retract for launch.
The superstructure for the sea-leg skyways serves no purpose now… the offices are bricked up, too. Why?
The end of Dock 5 is warped and bent from a rail accident that left some ore cars swinging like a stringy wrecking ball into the end of the superstructure and accompanying stair. The stairs are still navigable, but it wasn’t recommended by the CN workers that were with me.
I love the ghost sign across these two elevators, originally built as Superior Elevator. It’s looking pretty rough.
A wide view (15mm) of the shadow 4B is casting on 4A. Light leaks because of cheap camera.
Looking out of the wavy stock shop.
Sprays of water kept the muddy mixture flowing across the sluices, which filtered out gold particles from gravel and dirty.
Steam pipes snake up the walls like vines, but with asbestos.
A little catwalk gives access to the most important gauges in the building. Behind them are huge vents and fans. I bet it got steamy in here.
In most places, it may seem off for there to be a tunnel door on the top floor of a building, but Ford was that kind of place. This door from the steam plant led into a skyway and tunnel that connected to the main assembly floor.
When block glass shatters, it looks like ice.
The building on the right was where parts not assembled onto vehicles would be set in crates for shipment.
Labeling line elevator.
Looking through the washer that is the first stop for the dredgings.
“This way,” then, “No, that way!”
San Luis may not be a ghost town, but it’s aspiring by all indications. Luckily, it’s close enough to Cuba, NM to hang onto life, unlike the other ghost towns down the road.
The top of the grain handler of Ogilvie’s. The flagpole serves as a lightning rod. In fact, I would not be surprised if that was its primary purpose.
The sexiest feature of Kurth is this steel arch over the silos on its south side. The manholes in the floor open to the silos directly, and flimsy grates might catch a hurried worker. Grates were removable so that workers could descend into the concrete tubes, so a few are missing today.
Part of the decommissioned plant was used by the Air Force for virtual bombing runs. This is the guard shack for the radar station.
The tower of Dominion certainly dominates the elevator row.
Gloves hang in the basement of the former quality assurance labs.
The former BESCO building in the last light of day.
A big sliding fire door opens onto a train dock.
The Blacksmith Shop (right) was connected to the Bunk House (left) via this narrow walkway. This is likely due to the fire risk in each building. The left building had a cooking stove and furnace for heat and the right building had a small industrial furnace to repair mining equipment. A little walkway would mean that a fire on one side would be easier to fight from the other.
Molten copper pouring being a very dangerous thing to do by hand, this scale measured the load for the “Auto Caster” that actually formed the cooling copper in its molds.
A typical shower in the old section of the hospital. It looks a little horrifying in the harsh light of a camera flash on the thousands of little white tiles. One soap holder hadn’t been stolen yet.
Without their walls these Solvent Recovery Line buildings look like blast walls. Their concrete inner structures were part of the design so if there was an explosion inside it would ‘blow out’ with a puff instead of a bang. Now most of these are demolished or overgrown.
Looking at the boarded exterior of the newer area of the orphanage from its 1914 section.
Like many mill-style buildings of the time, the Twohy’s loading doors (in this case, the delivery wagon doors) opened to an elevator shaft. This design cut down on loading time, as long as the elevator was operational. Of course, if it was otherwise occupied, there could be no traffic through the exterior doors!
Beautiful belt wheels above the grain cribs. Getting to the spot where this was taken is now impossible, and I don’t know whether these remain or not anymore.
The BOMARC launch buildings are spaced on a large concrete pad that looks like a parking lot. Out of view are underground pipes for fueling and cooling the rocket motors.
Panorama from where the skyway connected the cleaning house and elevator. ADM Meal Storage is to the right, ADM-4 is to the extreme right, and Kurth is on the left.
Looking up at the LEMP malting plant elevator. Look at that BRICKWORK!
This elevator came crashing down, perhaps from the topmost floor. I wonder what it sounded like.
An open mine cars waits to be lowered back into Eagle Mine in front of the rust-locked modern mine shaft in the middle of Gilman.
Before it was demolished, there was one good staircase the led to the middle of the dock. Trees grew from it.
In the steam plant, steam pipes bundled in canvas and asbestos criss-cross the walls.
This section of the production floor was constantly dripping. Someone had laid down giant plastic sheeting to attempt to protect the lower floors, but it hasn’t worked.
The small door leads to the offices, the large door leads to the shop. My back at this time is to the corrugated steel wall. At the time I wondered why there was just one steel wall, not knowing that 40 years before there was another spot for an engine here. This section of the roundhouse has become a sort of town dump–car seats, cans of paint and tires are piled into its corners.
The huge snowfalls of 2011 brought new collapses across the buildings.
A vent sitting at the base of one of the crumbling smokestacks.
A photo from the early 2000s before the conveyors were scrapped.
The old men’s ward is an example of what the hospital resembled before part of the complex was modernized. Small rooms, light switches outside the door, small observation windows set into heavy wood. If you ask me, though, the tile work across the floors is the most spectacular.
A view of the government presses, with pages of law across the floor covered in footprints.
Since this picture was taken, the roof has totally collapsed in this area.
A great lakes freighter slowly passes SK Wheat Pool 4 with ‘The Sleeping Giant’ in the background. Arista 100.
A look straight down into the chutes were taconite pellets would dump into the dock hoppers. Rebar was a safety measure to keep workers from being buried alive, were they to slip into the holes.
From inside a painting shed, where heatlamps and a vented roof made sure that the Caddy looked like it was worth the price tag.
The headquarters for the plant was in the middle of it. It’s abandoned but well preserved–a strange sight in Gary, Indiana.
A closeup of the now-scrapped steel chute.
Construction in 2014 reveals a lost stone sign.
Pozo Mine, the most menacing mine building I’ve ever seen. Black and white film, shot with the Fuji GX680, a beast of a camera.
Looking up to the second floor of the Nitrating House, where cotton would be soaked in nitric acid. These brought cotton into the building.
This building looked like some sort of office.
Little has changed inside the mill, but since it was built in 1916, many tanks and ancillary buildings have popped up around it.
A huge vent looks like it built in a hurry. There was actually very little in the way of bits of machinery left over… I am guessing almost anything of value was scrapped in the 1990s.
Hip bump girl.
Fake Fact: The term ‘stovetop hat’ was coined by Island Station’s architect while trying to explain why he wanted to put the steel chimney on the station. ‘Live Here’ was part of the advertising when the building was host to artist lofts. They weren’t kidding.
The hike to the village is steep. This is looking into the valley from the halfway point.
Looking at the ghost sign from a rust-locked cement conveyor that linked the silos with a packing warehouse.
A typical dwelling in San Luis. I could not tell if it was occupied, but most of the town is abandoned.
A wide view of the poor house. Look at the smokestack and elevator shaft, which show the former roofline.
A massive water tower easily tucks into the shadow of Blast Furnace #6.
A street side exposure of the original 1914 section of the orphanage. Turned into black and white to deemphasize all the graffiti across the front steps.
Small rooms in the basement of the asylum were seemingly too tiny to be used, even for storage.
Either the company was pulling parts from this evaporator to use as parts for other plants, or the last thing the workers did was to get this machine ready for the next campaign. Either way, plans changed.
Windows provided the 250-some workers with fresh air and light, and helped to keep flour dust from building up in the air, helping to prevent explosions. Today, machines control air flow better without windows, so they were bricked.
Rogers Mine is one of the most structurally sound mines in the Iron River area that isn’t part of a museum.
Kodak Tri-X 400/Leica M7. The office (first floor), laboratory (second floor) and mill behind it. Everything was clean and pristine.
Inside this small iron clad mine is a couch and some clothes. It seems that for a short while, someone was living inside of it…
Go on and jump in, if you want, there’s even a ladder to climb out.
A few of the stalls in the older section of the roundhouse, the noon sky peeking in.
Wide stairs between the ground, the mine shaft, and the dry house.
Zachary Taylor’s very own Scottish castle, spring-side in the Kentucky backcountry. Boarded and waiting, but in surprisingly good condition, considering the decades. I especially love the tower on the right side of the frame.
A typical hallway in the rocket assembly line.
Wagons and horses were kept in the building on the left, separate from the rest of the complex in case of fire. In the distance is the boiler house, separate for the same reason.
A late look at the brewhouse, long after the stainless steel tanks were scrapped.
Some sort of materials handling building, judging by the construction.
The back side of the hotel is plain, but for a fire escape.
Hunter climbing up to the coal tower.
Standing where the Standard Oil’s boiler used to sit; the coal room is on the right, and would have been filled from trackside.
Standing where the Final Assembly Building used to hum and staring across the former site of the Sheet Metal and Spring buildings. Today, of course, the Foundry is gone as well, so you’d be looking across Prairie Ave.
One of the only extant assembly line tracks in the body painting department. No photographer leaves Fisher 21 without capturing some version of this spot; hope you like mine.
Outbuildings near the perimeter fence. Beyond is all ranch land.
Harsh rail yard lighting throws shadows of broken windows against the line of boilers.
King Elevator sits in the corner of a more recently-defunct lumber mill: Great Western Timber. Perhaps in the future I will write the history of it. Arista 100 in 120.
One of the few doors.
An orphan culvert and camper, both tossed aside where nobody that will see will care.
In the distance, the San Haven Sanatorium water tower.
The turned rail was to prevent runaway cars from going over the end of the dock and into the lake.
An unplanned skylight. It’s unclear why some parts of the building had wooden roofing, while others were highly reinforced with brick.
Trees by the beautiful Nurse’s Cottage above and behind the Kirkbride. One side looks out over farmland while the other faces the back of the hospital grounds. As of 2014, the city is allowing artists to rent spaces inside.
The piano must have been a nice distraction; there is very little to do in Roberts.
Fall in line, act skinny, watch out for low hanging pipes. Don’t ask me where in the maze this was… 90% of the plant looked like this; vast rooms and catwalks with crisscrossing pipes and valves.
We people are so small.
The pockmarked concrete sign of Substation #2 over the control room that faces the highway.
Kat’s pretty cool.
Looking at the concrete headframe from street level. Acros 100 in Pentax 67
Outside the Chateau, where the fuel oil tank blocks the chapel.
This is the former air compressor house–one of them, at least–which turned steam power into air power to drive machinery across the production line.
From the catwalks below the hoisting motor in Shaft No. 1.
Vines are finding their way into the roundhouse.
The railing were jealous of both the bricks and bits, and chose instead to dissolve like this.
The rumors were true. Success is sweet.
A windmill marks one corner of GOW.
Part of the grain dust venting system, dislodged from its place above the dumping hatches under the grain cribs.
There are a few campers parked in the abandoned buildings around the NAD. I am guessing that they were once a more secure place to store such things OR they have always been wide open, and this was a quick and free way to dump unwanted toys.
The belts on these mills have long ben missing.
A huge steam pipe snakes between catwalks, through the floors, and toward the condensers, so the water could be recovered and reused.
My guess is that the Capitol Hotel closed and Adler bought up some of their equipment.
The metallic arms of the missile erector, which would stand rockets over the blast pit in the launch position. Medium Format film–cheap but excellent Fomapan 100 in a Pentax 67.
Workers would undoubtedly prefer to use the belt manlift on the right.