clouds

National Mineshaft

On the National Mine property are two shafts, both serving the same workings. This one seems to have gotten some upgrades in the 1960s, judging from the condition of the metal.

Dock 2 at Sunset

Winter skies over Allouez Bay. From a distance, it looks almost fragile.

Elevators

Counter-weighted ore cars alternately filled and emptied to feed Furnace 7. Honestly, though, the corner-mounted cranes are sexier in my opinion. Note the trees growing from the stacks.

Bayard Sunrise

One night, I camped behind the sugar mill. You can tell be the clouds that a cold front was moving out—it was a hot day.

Dock 5L

One of the covered rail loading docks. All of them were overgrown and rust-clad.

Looking Out A Window at the Starch Works

The layout and design of the buildings reminded me strongly of a brewery or distillery. To the right you can see some of the retrofits by the first lumber company to buy the buildings, in the 1970s.

Railroad Depot

A squat building with a rail scale. Taken between rain showers in late summer, when I seemed to be the only one at White Pine.

Twenty-Five Million Minutes

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.

National Mine on Quartz Hill

National Mine and its rockhouse (?) as seen from Mammoth Hill. From this angle, I am fairly certain this was a crushing and sorting house. The bottom looks like it has two aerial tram doors as well.

Set the Pie on the Sill

In this ghost town where there were brick, wooden, and dirt-brick buildings, the latter fared the best by far.

Chicago Skyline

Looking at The Windy City from the top of the coal tower. The pond you see is the former ACME Coke coal yard.

Three Peaks

Near the base of the mesa is a modern house, which seems to be a ranch of some sort. What a fantastic spot to live, but for the fact every rainstorm floods the arryos, muddy ditches at the bottom of gullies, making it impossible to travel.

Industry + Aurora

A nice view of the aurora borealis (“Northern Lights”) strong enough to outshine the industrial lighting at the power plant. The lights in the foreground direct ships discharging coal for the station.

Overgrown Spires

The back of the castle is barely visible through the trees that have grown thick around the walls, making it look so much older.

Be C- Watch You- Step

A cracked sign at dock-level, where loading boats would be tied below the taconite conveyors. All across the surface of the concrete dock were taconite pellets, like slippery little marbles. One wrong step could put a worker in the water, which is a bad, bad place to be.

Egomaniac – Brahm

The sun sets in front of a huge concrete building—about four times the size of the power plant. Probably a corn storage bin from an ethanol operation that ran here in the 1980s.

Supply House and Carpentry Shop

At first glance, I thought the center building was a hoist house because of the shape of the window. Now I think this was built as a warehouse and later used as a laboratory.

Bldg 100

Some sort of materials handling building, judging by the construction.

Vivacious Veteran

No, it’s not your Mac’s desktop, it’s a beautiful Lake Superior night. Taken from near the former Pittsburgh and Reading Anthracite Plant. You can see the frame that used to hold the lifeboat that was auctioned in 2006 to the left of the Pilot House.

War City Power

From the bottom of the skyway I looked back, my eyes tracing the vines from the marsh up the smokestacks to the perfect Midwestern sky.

Creature – Brahm

The pitch of the roof is more typical for areas with lots of snow—not the border of Ohio and Kentucky. So, I assume this roofline accommodated some equipment inside for trains—note the tracks.

Atlas Stared

“Man has set for himself the goal of conquering the world but in the processes loses his soul.” Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, Russian writer and historian.

Building 429

A rail maintenance building. I liked the color of the tree against the peeling red paint.

Jalopy and Contrails

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

Paint Shop

Different doors for different vehicles, I would guess. White Pine Mine used tire-based vehicles, rather than track-based, making it pretty different than other mines I’ve been to.

Perimeter Fence

The perimeter fence still holds strong, 50 years after it was put up.

Tailings Boom I

Like a railgun pointed at the Rockies… the boom would direct tailings–junk rock–outside of the dredge pond.

Launcher

The fiery side of a launch building, just is it began to rain.

Quenching Tower

Showering red-hot coke fresh from the furnaces near the Coal Tower (in the back) was the Quenching Tower’s duty (front).

Superior’s Sub-Suburban Sprawl

The same view in 2007.

Superior, WI, some have said, is a suburb of Duluth, MN. It’s more like a sub-suburb, I would argue. It’s the industrial district that is technically in another state, one that sells beer on Sundays. Perspective is looking out of the mostly-disassembled larger (newer) elevator.

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.

Rotten Dock

The top of the docks are so rotten in places that you can see the lake through the boards. In the foreground you can see the controls for the chutes, which work on a clutch.

Under Dock Two

The conveyor between the shore and Dock 2. Note the gap in the aerial walkway that used to connect Dock 4 to the rest of the complex.

Stelco Skies

Peering at Stelco’s abandoned steel rod rolling mill, not demolished. The rectangular on the right in between is the boiler house that heated Stelco.

Silverton, Colorado

Taken as I drove out of Silverton, CO. One of my favorite landscapes of 2015. Want a print? Email me!

Pitfall

Taken several years before the tornado story when the weather, and the condition of the buildings, were nice.

Driveway

This old Jetta did more offroading than your average lifted tinted loud-exhaust pickup.

Atlas Ditch

The blast pit carried the smoke and flame from the rocket motor away from the other base buildings.

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.

Workhouse II

Looking at the tallest part of the plant from a skeletal loading dock. Kodak Portra 160/Mamiya 6.

Holmfield, MB- Harrison Milling

The flour mill (rear) and its elevators. The taller elevator was moved here in 1955, when the Harrisons bought it from Federal, who declared it surplus. The smaller elevator replaced an earlier smaller warehouse in 1926. Taken shortly after dawn. This one picture made the drive worth it, for me. Medium Format.

Tillston, MB- Five Roses Flour

“Five Roses” was the brand of flour that Lake of the Woods marketed. Later, this became another Manitoba Pool elevator. Notice the “POO” up top? It’s missing the ‘L’…

Art Project

Some guerilla art for passing drivers on I-94 East to enjoy. Artist unknown.

Film: Frontenac Feelings

Frontenac’s shaft house is well preserved, compared to all other around it. Leica/Summilux 35/Ektar 100

San Luis Home

A typical dwelling in San Luis. I could not tell if it was occupied, but most of the town is abandoned.

Cargill and Enger Tower in Fall

Looking at the huge and modern Cargill B2 from the circa-1919 Lake Superior “I”. This is a rather unique perspective of Enger Tower and Skyline.

Rich Dirt

The command building and a coolant tank. In the distance, rain and hail pound Wyoming dirt.

Tillston, MB- Pool Elevator

The offices for the Five Roses elevator have long been boarded. To the left you can see the Manitoba Pool Elevator slogan, “Service at Cost”, meaning they would not make profit off farmers and dues.

Flagpole

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.

Ball Mill Mounts

Short-stack remains of mounts for rod and ball mills, if I was to bet. The concentrator separated junk rock (tails) from the copper and silver ore, to such a point it could be smelted.

Kate

Two versions of Detroit. One where buildings stand tall and proud, and one where they wilt under the sun. It’s an amazing juxtaposition.

Milwaukee Road Boxcar

Just across the North Dakota border, a rusty Milwaukee Road boxcar sits where it was shoved off the mainline. The grain elevator in the background marks the tracks, which is still used by BNSF.

Biking Past Bunkers

Because of the dangers of storing the materials to make explosives as well as the explosives themselves, there were earthen bunkers all across the plant like this.

MPE3- Port Arthur Ore Dock

Looking down at the Port Arthur Ore Dock from Manitoba Pool Elevator #3. The conveyor belts are gone and King Elevator is in the far distance.

Electric Steel- Workhouse

The rear of the complex shows the more than 100 year old workhouse–still working! I do not know if the tanks are original to the 1901 elevator, but I suspect so.

Broadway On Broadway

Looking at the Broadway from across Broadway, a beautiful Buffalo day. Note the glazed terra cotta facade–and the signs of fire damage from the first floor.

One More for the Clipper

The Clipper was one of the most popular Packards, but its production was cut short by WWII. Had they produced the car instead of Rolls Royce plane engines I imagine there would might be driving a Packard today, rather than a Ford.

Facing Downtown (2013)

2013. As part of the Head House’s facelift, it’s gotten new windows. However, you can now still see where the conveyor-way connected this building with the elevators behind it in the upper right of the image.

Big Float

A full harbor on a hot summer evening, just after twilight, as seen from atop the castle walls.

Skyway

The exterior of the factory is unassuming

Cables, Gangways, and Booms

The bottom of the tailings boom is rotten. In days when the dredge, floated, gangways connected it to shore, it seemed. You can see the size of the pontoons under the boat here.

Holmfield, MB- Harrison Mill

The Harrison flour mill, completed in 1897 and expanded in 1901 and 1902. The tunnel that I am standing on probably transported grain from the elevator to the mill. Medium Format.

Santiago Tunnel Tailings

Kate stands on top of the tailings pile that added some usable land to the side of the gulch. Somewhere nearby is the buried Santiago Tunnel.

Cutoff Ranch

An abandoned ranch on the east side of the tracks. This was not the Colmor Cutoff they were waiting for.

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.

ADM-Delmar #4- Top of the World

The spectacular, if precarious, view of downtown Minneapolis from the roof of ADM Annex 4. Note the great messages left by various graffiti artists who made it to the spot.

Rundblick

A panoramic view of the sintering plant’s gas plant (?). Everyone who visits must get a picture of these rusty smokestacks!

Battery Stack

The taller of the two smokestacks on site. Note the crack around its crown.

Facing Downtown (2005)

2005. This is very likely the oldest image I have on the website; I took this in the early 2000s with my first camera when I was new to the hobby. I still like it quite a lot.

Ogilvie’s Fez

When I first saw Ogilvie’s from the ground, I promised myself to look back when i found my way into this little pitched outcropping which seemed to have the best view of Thunder Bay I could imagine. It turns out, though, that there is no floor in that section; it is just extended machine access! Oh well. Mount McKay in the background in the last light.

Sunset on Osborn

It is unclear when the ‘Superior Warehouse Company’ sign was put up, but it was likely around 1916-1917, when maps indicate it served as a dry goods warehouse, operated by Twohy-Eimon Mercantile Company. The Sivertson sign was likely added in the mid-1980s. In this image I tried to preserve the colors the bricks turn at sunset.

Gangway I

A rusting disconnect gangway. The smokestack is for a boiler, if I recall.

Kate

Kate in the crow’s next… very shaky by the time she got to it.

Water Tower

Looking out at the town water tower (which I love) from the sugar mill (which I also love).

Eureka Tram Cable-(C)SUSBTREET.org

A tram that once linked the Sunnyside Mine to the mill in Eureka has been reduced to a single cable. Nearby, an open adit drips water into a tributary of the Animas River.

Old Sign

This sign was important when trains ran the length of the elevator.

Keeper’s Houses

These houses were built for the use of the lighthouse keepers in 1913 (left) and 1916 (right). The second house was added when the entry added a fourth light and required a second rotation. Today, there are no unbroken windows in either building.

Elevator Row

Looking out across the elevator row from Portland Huron’s roof. Don’t you love the color of the sky?

Control Room Window

Minnesota Power’s Taconite Harbor power station, as seen through the ship loading control room windows.

Bayfront Fair

Summertime is when Duluth goes to the lakeside to listen to music, visit traveling fairs, and talk to neighbors about the smell of the lake. As seen from the castle walls.

Workshop

Much of the circa-1950s buildings remain with few alterations, such as these long boring sheet metal ruststicks.

Cheratte Obelysk

Looking at the headframe for Shaft 3 from the tower for Shaft 1. Below is the roof of the Dry House. It was hard to remind myself that these building have been abandoned longer than I’ve been alive.

Gulchward

Looking through the loading platform of Frontenac Mine toward Black Hawk. In 1900, you would see Druid Mine on the left and Aduddell on the right.

Treasure Mountain Concentrator

The purpose of the concentrator was to separate the gold and silver-rich ore from the waste rock. You can tell from the design that the process relies heavily on gravity.

Chopper Over Atlas

“Ladies and gentlemen, we’ve been getting reports that several Yellow Helicopters have been seen hovering above town. We are all aware of the Black Helicopters, which are World Government, and Blue Helicopters, which are Secret Police, and the Helicopters with Detailed Murals of Diving Birds of Prey, which are the helicopters that took all the children in Night Vale away a few months ago (we still don’t know what those helicopters are but they did bring all the children back unharmed, and much more well-behaved than before, so they are deemed just as safe as the other helicopters) but these new Yellow Helicopters, no one quite knows.” – Welcome to Night Vale, Ep. 32

Glory Hole Mill Creek

A shallow creek traces Illinois Gulch toward the Chain O’ Mines mill. Ball mills are laid out in the sun.

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.

Cabezon Peak from Guadalupe Mesa

The valley is full of rocky peaks that stand out from the winding creeks, which only truly run after storms. It is a very beautiful place.

Backdoor

Looking out at the abandoned neighborhood around the house.

Corps Tug

A US Army Corps of Engineers tug, tied at the end of the pier before the American Victory was parked here.

James R. Barker I

The Barker turning around before it backed into Tac Harbor to unload coal for Minnesota Power.

Tailings Boom II

…a better view of the huge tailings boom stretching outside of the tailings pond.

Gilman on the Cliff

The southernmost houses in Gilman are seen through the pines on the right, near the tram stop.

Battery Run

A side view of the oven pusher from the ground. The tallest coal bunker looks tiny in the distance, though on the scale of the factory it’s practically on top of me as I’m taking the picture.

Cradle and Tree

Gopher Ordnance Works, aka the U-Lands, is a landscape where roots and boughs break apart concrete and steel.

Everybody is a Star

The topmost roof of the hospital is covered in antennae and includes a star that faced the rest of the complex, now demolished.

Blast Path

The lower door is where the rocket exhaust would flow into the blast pit during initial launch. The upper doors would vent the rocket so the erector and other equipment in the building would not be (as) damaged.

Halfway Up the Mesa

The hike to the village is steep. This is looking into the valley from the halfway point.

Fire Damage at Castle Noisy

Looking out from a hallway on the third floor where a ceiling and roof should be. I could not stand in the room, as the floor had collapsed into the basement, but I could put my camera out at arm’s length and fire a few pictures upward, which is how I came away with this image!

We Built This City on Flour

Looking out upon Mill City through the lens of FLOUR, highlighted in pink and low clouds. This sign has recently been converted into LED lighting.

Packing House

The concrete walls, heavy steel blast doors, and plastic roof tell me that this was one of the shell loading buildings.

Patrolling

The St. Louis County Sheriff constantly patrols the property looking for trespassers.

Original Glucose Line

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!

Building 402

Unloading boats had the option to take on fuel at Taconite Harbor. This building, among other things, pumped fuel to the dock.

Missile Way

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.

Drain Key

Looking out of the Brewery Creek Drain outfall at night, after a storm had pushed piles of rocks up onto the shore.

Nature Bouncing Back

No matter what environmental disasters industry throws at Mother Earth, she will bounce back.

North Face

Looking at the side of 4B from the roof of its car shed.

New Mexico Ghost Town

The main street of the ghost town is also the maintenance road for the BNSF line that bisects Colmor.

Workhouse I

On the dark side of the workhouse at sunset, you can almost see where the walls used to be. Kodak Portra 160/Mamiya 6.

Down the Boom

Through a section of the tailings boom where mountain winds tore open the sheet metal around the conveyor, I poked my head out.

Haus, Anno 1815

This building was 99 years old when it was demolished for the coal mine.

South Bend Sunrise

I was squatting overnight in one of the buildings and woke up with the sunrise. This is what I woke up to.

Trees in the Stacks

Another perfect Indianan sunset alights like a bird on the tops of the vent houses and tree-packed smokestacks.

BCT from Amtrak I

The first time I saw Buffalo Central Terminal was from a westbound Empire Builder. In the foreground you can see the rows of platforms.

Two Scrubbers

The copula stacks were fitted with scrubbers. Making metal is a very polluting activity.

White Pine Mine Ruin

These concrete blocks were formed to be solid mounts for machinery. All the metal was scrapped in the late 1990s, leaving these modern ruins. Seagulls love them.

The Cold Front

Knowing that a tornado just passed nearby is less distressing when you’re surrounded by nuclear-attack-hardened buildings.

Perch

Looking across the catwalk attache to the elevated control room, in charge of the train dumping part of the operation.

Best Flour Panorama

The back of the neon sign before it was converted to LED lighting. The image is mirrored so it can be read.

Today’s Weather- Stormy

Before the clouds broke, I snapped this profile of the dumping control room and its spiral staircase. These are the colors that I dream in.

Longmont Sky

“To make a prairie it takes a clover and one bee,
One clover, and a bee,
And revery.
The revery alone will do,
If bees are few.”
― Emily Dickinson

Hexagon Building

This battlement-like tower is the first thing one sees coming to Old Taylor from Frankfort.

Old Orphanage

It would be a shame if this building is not preserved. Word is (as of 2015) that construction may start on this section soon.

Studebaker Headquarters

The company headquarters. Abandoned last time I drove past it, though it is the classiest building in downtown South Bend.

Welcome to Atlas

A gate large enough to accommodate a missile, next to the ruins of the guard shack. Wyoming is the intersection of lonely and beautiful.

Kurth Malting- Sunrise’s Dusty Gaze

Sunrise in SEMI. The shadow of Kurth Malt is cast across ADM-Delmar #1. Clouds behind ADM-Delmar #4 light up. It’s cold and the air smells like train grease.

Kurth Malting- Mill City Fork

Sunrise over Mill Hell, and all of Kurth’s various skyways. The elevators in the foreground date to the mid-1920s, Electric Steel is behind and is a little earlier than that.

Puffer by Bibio

The roof was in bad shape, but too beautiful to avoid. This is the spot were I used to study medieval Latin.

Two Economies

HDR matrix panorama. Looking from the grain elevators, now doomed, toward the city between the flour mill’s water tower and tile elevator’s neon sign, the old and new economies seem almost united. Yet the financial centers rise in reality to shadow the now-abandoned industry and manufacturing. The way of things, I’m told.

Fire Brick Bucket

Near the old slag dump there are the remains of the pouring buckets that received the molten steel from the US Steel blast furnaces, filled to the brim with pig iron. They must be incredibly heavy!

Two Rooflines

Looking out from what little remains of the second floor at the poor house, which was in terrible condition. No roof and no floors. Soon to be ruins.

Broken Cross

On my second or third trip, the cross had broken in the wind.

Shadows of Taconite Harbor on the James R. Barker

As the Barker steamed past the dock and island, the sunset casts the shadow of the Taconite Harbor receiving trestle on the boat. Through the fog, you can see some of the islands that were joined into a breakwater.

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.

Abandoned Switch

A switch for the yard engines, now on the edge of the property where nobody will find it.

Pillsbury A’s Stone Fascade

From Main Street, looking straight up at the A Mill, only the silence makes one think that nobody’s still inside, grinding grain into Pillsbury’s Best.

Ghosts of Munro Mining Co

Rogers Mine is one of the most structurally sound mines in the Iron River area that isn’t part of a museum.

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