black&white

Safe Lab

In the quality assurance labs there is a old safe.

Repair Cart

One of a few rolling workbenches to keep the thousands of pulleys, cogs, and belts working properly.

ADM-Delmar #1- Blockaded Door

The city has taken steps to prevent the curious and the desperate from going into the elevators, including piling rocks against the doors and windows.

Outbuildings

Outbuildings near the perimeter fence. Beyond is all ranch land.

INAAP Power

Looking toward the power station at the edge of the explosives plant.

Jalopy and Contrails

The moon highlights the contrails over the engine house in the middle of the night. Foreground light painted.

Gering Mill

Little has changed inside the mill, but since it was built in 1916, many tanks and ancillary buildings have popped up around it.

End Chutes

If there was a problem with the conveyor belt, the grain would go out these chutes.

Collector 4

Pipes to channel nitrose (think nitro glycerine) infused acid through the building.

Thunderdumpers

These dump cars moved copper ore to the top of the furnaces… it’s about two stories above ground level.

Old Time Hauler

What looks to be a skip for repairing the dock, in the concrete steeple.

1917 Mill

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.

Shaft No. 1 Tower

Looking through skylights of the payroll office toward the Cheratte No.1’s tower. This is where workers would wait in line to receive pay, surrounded by the mine workings.

Group Shower

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.

Some Assembly Required

One of my favorite shots from that year, conveyor line parts stacked and hung with Postal Service bins from decades ago.

Brewhouse Levels

A late look at the brewhouse, long after the stainless steel tanks were scrapped.

Crating Building

The building on the right was where parts not assembled onto vehicles would be set in crates for shipment.

Crashed Elevator

This elevator came crashing down, perhaps from the topmost floor. I wonder what it sounded like.

Cafeteria Door

Almost all of the doors and windows on the ground floor have been boarded, leaving the ground level very dark.

Bldg 250

An orphan culvert and camper, both tossed aside where nobody that will see will care.

Ruined Hoist

Steel mine hoists, near the place they worked, wait for scrap prices to justify their final removal from Osceola, Michigan.

Lizzie Mine, Missouri Flats

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…

Orphanage Arches

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.

Cadillac Coater

From inside a painting shed, where heatlamps and a vented roof made sure that the Caddy looked like it was worth the price tag.

Headroom

The rumors were true. Success is sweet.

One Out in Aluminum

Aluminum spools replaced their wooden counterparts, later in the factory’s history.

Dead Light

A typical Chateau wall. Kodak Tri-X 400 in Leica M7.

Buckstaff Chair

On the ground floor of the main factory there seems to be only one chair left.

Oven Battery

Blast Furnace 7 as seen from the ore yard. Imagine running up those stairs through blast furnace smoke.

Tilston School (Kodak Tmax400 35mm)

The Tilston School,built in the late 1960s. In front of it is a memorial and model to the first schoolhouse. This building, however, has been turned into a kind of town dump. The classrooms are filled with mattresses and discarded tires and trash.

Spare Parts II

Bits and things in a pile in the corner of the smelter, the unsold chunks of industrial history that didn’t sell at an on-site auction before my visit.

Water Fountain

A simple porcelain fountain in the original brewhouse. The water fountain, no doubt, is not original.

Chapel Miranda

The stone chapel sits beside the main house and received a particularly heavy dose of gothic architectural touches.

Brewhouse Staircase

In the brewhouse between the preheating tank and kettle room. The spiral staircase goes into a kettle annex where a few smaller stainless steel kettles hide. If you looked right from this frame you would see the bottom of one of the kettles like the bottom of a steel mixing bowl.

Final Furnace

The end of the heating line allowed glass to cool slowly, and thus be stronger.

Boiler Blowers

While the stokers are gone, the pipes bringing pulverized coal down were left.

Truck Scale

Daisy Mill could accept shipments from water, rail, and truck at one time. Now everything comes and goes by rail.

Elements in the Dark

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.

Anchor Chains

Taken from the most forward part of the windlass room to show how the front of the ship opens up from the front wedge. Note the giant anchor chains and foam strapped to the frontmost beam.

Ogilvie’s- Ship Gallery Arch (Arista 100)

When the ship loaders were added, a doorway was cut through the metal silo to make a room for the grain handling equipment. Note the dust sensor in the corner of the torch-cut archway.

Kentucky Castle

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.

Wilting Firebox

Considering the side of Boiler #3’s firebox, where it meets the boiler (between the cylinders). The top piece is where the exhaust is sucked into the chimney, one chimney for each pair of boilers.

Max Pressure

I don’t think we’re anywhere near maximum pressure anymore.

Hastings Sunset

Even in monochrome, you can probably tell what colors were over Hastings that evening: Red, White, and Blue.

Rubber Lining Dock Pockets

Old conveyor belts are draped over the sides of the ore chutes to cut down on the noise and wear of the dumping trains.

I Z E

Miners at the turn of the century had better taste in typography than the average person does today.

Officer’s Row

Officers got houses and the honor of living near other officers. They call it Officer’s Row.

Launch Buildings

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.

Old Entrance Shaft

A small upper level was accessible via ladder through the hole in this ceiling. Ben for scale.

Still Studebaker

Between the room with mold sand and the space where the car’s metal bits would be put together, a pillar is marked as structurally vital.

Glass Brick Wall

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.

Oil Cars

Only two machines sit on the rails in the roundhouse, both oil cars. It’s not clear whether there’s anything inside either, but they have to have been placed here before 1970, when the turntable outside these numbered doors was removed.

Diesel Lab III

Some local kids were having a fire extinguisher fight when I walked into the lab one day.

Sunrooms

The Sun Rooms, or Common Rooms, reminded me of the Panopitcon turned inside-out.

Outbuilding (Fomapan 100)

Looking through a launcher doorway at an outbuilding… the fire truck garage, if I recall correctly. Fomapan medium format in Pentax 67.

Dented and Dilated – (C)SUBSTREET

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.

Go Pack

Because Oshkosh is close to Green Bay, the Packers are very popular there. Everywhere in the plant there were traces of ‘Cheese Head’ culture.

Arched Corridor

The third floor corridor is not so welcoming, as it requires visitors to walk along the support breams without the luxury of a floor. I didn’t mind, but I can’t see the family with young children that was also exploring Noisy doing the same.

Kurth Malting- Cupola

Kurth bears a ghost sign. Recently, its main sign was destroyed by graffiti artists in 2015.

I Appreciate You

Frankie on the White Pine Mine vehicle access shaft. The mine was traditional inside… all room-and-pillar.

Ely’s Peak by Night

A 5-minute exposure of the tunnel and stars, and even some of Duluth’s city lights bouncing off the clouds. A single off-camera flash in the tunnel gives the effect of an oncoming train.

Calumet Elevator- Coal Room Door

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.

Loading Dock

A truck loading dock for raw materials. Looking at the concrete, you can sort of tell where the rails used to run.

Stock Office

Old parts catalogs litter the floor. The office overlooks empty shelves. Graffiti glue peeling paint in place.

80s Chairs

…when injection molding was the new thing that everyone was experimenting with.

Port Sluice Sprays

Sprays of water kept the muddy mixture flowing across the sluices, which filtered out gold particles from gravel and dirty.

The Animas River, near Mayflower Mill

Near Howardsville, Colorado, the Animas River gets quite wide. This is near the Little Nation Mill, which is worth a stop if you’re traveling north from SIlverton. It’s also near the former Gold King Mine, which “blew” in 2015 and flooded the Animas River with toxic mine water.

Fallen Vent

A vent sitting at the base of one of the crumbling smokestacks.

Foot in the Door

A shuttered house at the end of the block doesn’t even have boards on it anymore.

SWP4- Offices

I wonder if these windows were bricked after the 1950 explosion with the hopes that, if another silos blew, the people in this office would be better protected.

Cargill in Spring (Film)

Taken from atop a grain train at the end of Cargill B-2, looking toward Lake Superior “I”, now part of the sample complex. This area used to have another slip, but Cargill filled it on when it built the elevator on the right.

Basement Fireplace and Toilet

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.

Powder Kegs

These aluminum powder kegs were forgotten in storage.

Back of the Line

Note the large belt pulley in the center of the frame. Follow the axel it’s on and you’ll see several belts still attached to the drive, which was originally steam-driven.

Control Room

The long control room overlooks giant caps where equipment was removed long ago.

Chester Creek Infall

Chester Creek Infall, near Duluth’s old Armory. The creek will not emerge again until it is near the Lakewalk.

Pool 8 Door

The end of the new elevator. Line of bird droppings follow the fire sprinkler pipes and wires in the room.

Evaporator Innards

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.

Film: Vapor

Water vapor was collected and condensed to be reused in other processes. Kodak Tri-X 400/Leica M7

Thrall

A windmill marks one corner of GOW.

Tower Vines

One thing that struck me as a midwesterner in the South was the vines. They seem to be able to completely cover a building when left alone for a few decades.

Drive

The belts on these mills have long ben missing.

A Factory Wants

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.

Boiler Room

The boilers are gone, but round brick portals remain where they used to meet the walls of the boiler room. Behind it appears to be the coal bunker itself.

Island Station Living

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.

Catwalk Creeping

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.

1952 Highrises

Two of the remaining four towers in the projects. Throughout our time there we saw and heard squatters inside and chose not to go in. What do you call a smart choice made in the midst of a dumb choice? There should be a word for that.

Child’s Wheelchair

In the bottom of a creek, an antique children’s wheelchair is buried in grass, where someone threw it. Wooden leg braces suggest this dates to the 1950s.

Row

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.

Blown Gauges

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.

King- Rooftop (Arista 100)

The roof of the King Elevator had two small vents and a terrific view of Sleeping Giant Provincial Park. Arista 100 in 120.

Medicine Cabinet

A corner of the addition is lined with glass cabinets, formerly filled with beds.

Boarded Clocktower

This view of BCT shows the portico where the main entrance is at the base of the office tower, and the clock.

Boiler Master

David Aho, the owner of Mitchell Engine House, poses beside the boiler.

Film: Juice Levels

Thick glass windows allow workers to check the beet juice levels in this steel tank. You can tell by the reinforcement that it had a lot of liquid and had to hold against immense pressure. Kodak Tri-X 400/Leica M7.

Auger Floor

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.

1957 Calendar

Park Insurance Agency is no longer in business, nor would you be able to dial that phone number.

Say Remiss

For reasons unknown, this building’s concrete was designed a little thinly. It reminds me of a Chicago, IL building constructed during WWI when concrete and steel were strictly rationed and many buildings went up with insufficient superstructures. I do not have a build date for this one yet.

Groud Floor

A better view of the belt system that drives all the machinery in the plant.

Bldg 253

This building seemed like a pump house or compressor house. It was full of empty concrete mounts.

Conveyor Blower

Grain is taken from the bottom of the silos through a conveyor in a tunnel. These blowers keep the air in the tunnel fresh.

Choir Loft

There’s no way an explorer, much less a choir, could stand here now. Since this picture was taken the roof has collapsed onto the loft.

Workshop and Parts

The workshop and parts room was full of light and meticulously sorted bolts, nuts, washers, gaskets, and all sorts of specialty hardware.

Corrugated Awning

The steel awning and its elegant staircase are one of my favorite features near the old carpentry shop. The gymnasium-theater is in the background.

Trigger

The middle missile launcher, as seen from the roof of its neighbor.

Handcarts

I wonder if these handcarts will become decoration for the hotel being building next to the silos.

Standard Oil Boiler Room

Standing where the Standard Oil’s boiler used to sit; the coal room is on the right, and would have been filled from trackside.

Tunnel Light

The newer tunnels were fitted with these fluorescent lights, although some skylights (block glass embedded in skywalks) let in some natural light during the day.

Old Crow Face

The front of the power plant (right), the distillery itself (center), and the regaling house (left).

Monorail in Mono

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.

Bricked Windows

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.

Superior Elevator- Cupola

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.

Nurse’s Station

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.

Blast Furnace Six

Furnace #6; its catwalk and tapway. Note the lever-operated gutter-blockers.

Valley Gem Piano

The piano must have been a nice distraction; there is very little to do in Roberts.

Empty Frame

Someone had helped themselves to one of the safety posters before my visit.

Camper

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.

Wood Block Floor

A steel powder keg serves as a door prop on the static-proof wood core floor. Note the ‘XXX’ marking to the left of the double door.

Film- Fallen Blower

Part of the grain dust venting system, dislodged from its place above the dumping hatches under the grain cribs.

Government Press

A view of the government presses, with pages of law across the floor covered in footprints.

Door C

A heavy steel rail door to help funnel explosions upward, rather than outward.

Dock Shack II

The turned rail was to prevent runaway cars from going over the end of the dock and into the lake.

Loading Dock

A ruined platform on the railyard platform side of the warehouse.

ADM-Delmar #1- Maintainance Department.

ADM-Delmar #1- Maintainance Department. The stainless steel bits are part of the grain dryer added in the 1940s. The workhouse itself (the larger tower) was a dedicated Cleaning House, meaning that grain passed through both these buildings to be rid of dust, dirt and extra moisture before storage. In the foreground is the old ADM locker room and pipe department.

Back Gate (Film)

Scanned after being recovered from the bottom of an old wooden box for a few years. Circa 2005.

Boarded Brew House

From the street, it’s clear that almost every window and door had boards over it, but not every building had a roof. Silly priorities.

Daisy Mill from Tanks

The building behind Daisy was demolished, leaving these tanks and a pointless conveyorway. Now it’s bricked (see over door near right corner of mill) and the tanks are exposed to the elements. There are a few holes in the area that have a healthy drop, so you should avoid the area.

Headframe Cyclone

Wind-battered catwalk lights between the shaft house and headframe/rockhouse building.

Fort William Elevator Ghost Sign I

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.

Prize Mine Sign

The mine was built with stone, wood, and steel. It’s in good condition.

Slurry Ladder

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.

Beet Driers

When it was convenient, the sugar company would pull equipment, even pipes, from one mill for another.

Bldg 106

This building looked like some sort of office.

Walk Alone

Instructional film strips on the floor of a second floor closer.

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