This door used to open at river level, but it has since been built up and sealed with a steel grate. Still, the original doors (with original paint?) stand in the same place. Once they opened to the fresh air, now they are permanently sealed in the tunnels. This is the official entrance for inspecting the mine, hence fiber optic and ladder. Shortly after the plant was demolished, this entire area was resealed and alarmed.
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.
When I moved from the roof back into the upper floors of the distillery, the plants growing out of the masonry caught my eye. It’s 60 feet up, but looks like it could be an old wall.
Beds line a basement room that is part way between the concepts of inside and outside. Boards and bricks were falling while I was photographing it—stay out.
Call me angsty, but I like it. Found in the Auxiliary Hospital.
This is what I believe to be the Masonic Cottage, where infected Freemasons would be treated together and enjoy some simple luxuries because of their social connections. Freemasonry is still popular in North Dakota.
Old parts catalogs litter the floor. The office overlooks empty shelves. Graffiti glue peeling paint in place.
Gary Methodist was a filmset for Transformers 3 in 2010.
Vines are finding their way into the roundhouse.
This spiral staircase isn’t doing Lemp much good–maybe they’ll let me have it! I do love, though, that there is a door going to it–without walls–and it ascends to a second floor that doesn’t exactly exist anymore.
This used to be one of the office doors, but it’s been removed (apparently without malcontent) and placed in the shop area.
The only door into a large windowless concrete room, probably a storage bin. Kodak Portra 160/Mamiya 6.
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.
A Merrill Piano from Boston, in the Recreation Room of the Front Dorm.
The front door to the auditorium.
Dr. Muchow’s offices stand near his ‘new’ mill, but they show evidence of vandalism.
To move air around the non air-conditioned buildings, may of which date to the 1920s and 1930s, fans were mounted above the high door frames.
This building cleaned the barrels that transported ingredients through the plant.
Looking across the catwalk attache to the elevated control room, in charge of the train dumping part of the operation.
Behind the grand staircase is this beautifully preserved hallway with medieval-style arches and vivid paint.
It was a strange choice, although I appreciate it, for the firm reusing the shops to brick up the doorways while leaving the doors.
The end of the new elevator. Line of bird droppings follow the fire sprinkler pipes and wires in the room.
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.
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!
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.
When I first visited the chapel, it had a projection TV, two organs, Bibles, and more. Now these are mostly ruined, except for the tapestries, which have somehow survived.
A series of interconnected offices that look like they hadn’t been painted in 40 years.
A decaying door of the Medical Director for the unit. Because this is from one of the outbuildings and not Administration, I doubt that this was the Medical Director of Norwich State Hospital’s office.
A sizable crane on the corner of the engine house still swings out.
Miners would sit in this room before going into the mine. The boards on the right indicated whether every single miner was “in” or “out”.
After demolition in the mid 2000s, this interior door became exterior. I remember walking through the car shed as a teenager. It was a shortcut, if I didn’t get caught.
This skyway, built to help seal off two parts of the complex during an out of control fire, was probably too rotten to burn by the time I saw it.
A bathroom in the rear of the ballroom that overlooks the Rose Garden.
My first view of the tunnel was in the dead of winter. In spite of being in the middle of the forest, it was totally silent. Mamiya GA645 / Kodak Pro 400
This building would store and maintain warheads. It was right next to the launch pad, but the two were separated by a high mound.
The end of one of the scrapped turbines. Judging by the aborted attempt at cutting it in half, the scrappers had some trouble with this one.
Before the gold could be extracted, the rock was turned to powder. Depending on the size of the steel balls inside the mill, the rock would be reduced to a certain size. So, multiple mills were usually used in stages.
Presumably, in a nuclear blast the antenna would be blown flat and pop back up, allowing communication even after a near-direct hit.
These houses was built by hard rock miners in the early 1900s.
These stairs lead to the balcony.
Looking through a launcher doorway at an outbuilding… the fire truck garage, if I recall correctly. Fomapan medium format in Pentax 67.
A blue chair in a blue room
The sluice room was surrounded in fine grating. The company would want to finely control when the doors would be opened so the gold could be removed under supervision. No yellow bonus for the working man…
Why the door had to be moved over 2 1/2 feet will remain a mystery.
A typical room in Birtle.
The side of the maintenance shops, still home to several disassembled electric carts.
This is one of my favorite images of the year because of the color, light and textures. Someone told me once that the medium of photographers is not film or digital sensors, but rather shadows. This photo is evidence of that.
Inside the office was a small furnace and a collection of mechanical belts. You can see “SERVICE AT COST” and “POOL 168” in the background.
The pits have long since been filled so the roundhouse could be used for storage.
The mostly-empty distilling room is easy to spot from the outside because of the distinctive round window.
The top floor of the apartment seemed so empty without the furniture that once adorned it. Instead, my eyes were drawn to the worn paths in the floor between the rooms.
Sharks in the floor.
These were some of the most attractive shops of all the mines in the area. It’s no wonder Hanna Mining wanted to use them as their center of operations in the Iron River district.
Kat’s pretty cool.
The old truck scale sits in the middle of what was Nettleton Avenue Slip.
This dock goes between loading bays (see glass brick walls) and the railroad.
What I make out to be the dining room or great hall of the castle, as seen through of the side rooms, which appeared to be a very ruined library. Teenager graffiti looks cooler in French.
Hip bump girl.
No ambiguity here… miners, check in at this office.
Pocket door and light switches in the upper control room, at the top of the spiral staircase.
This miner locker room has probably never been so clean.
At noon, the lower skylights around the shops glow yellow-green, thanks to the flora blooming on the roof above.
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.
Looking into the engine works from the concrete addition.
David Aho pictured.
A small bunker and blast wall between shell-loading buildings would have provided shelter during disasters, such as tornados, accidental explosions, and perhaps even enemy attacks.
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.
A heavy steel rail door to help funnel explosions upward, rather than outward.
The individual ovens are skinny to allow even and fast heating of the whole interior. Numbers are cut into signs because no paint could withstand the heat or corrosive emissions from the coking process.
Here, the concentrated gold (and silver, and zinc, I would guess) would be loaded into trucks bound for the smelter.
The big door at the bottom of the concentrator was where a tram once connected to lower the (pre-) processed ore into the river valley, where the railroad was. It’s unclear whether this ever connected directly to Eureka’s Sunnyside mill, although it’s possible.
Looking from the main shop into the boiler shop, one of three attached buildings that specialized in certain repairs. One thing that architectural photographers have to work with is an elongated “magic hour” with ideal shadowing and coloring–this photo is a result of that lighting.
The blacksmith shop is pretty rugged looking. Through the door you can see the collapsed walkway that might have once connected to a building covering the Santiago Tunnel adit.
2015. Water damage hastens the decay of the annex and its stage. Every time I visit this room, the chairs are in different places. Kodak Portra 400 in a Voigtlander Bessa.
A damaged roof channeled rain onto the adobe walls, cutting them in half. In the distance, a preserved house and the ruins of the Colmor School.
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.
Prize Mine has been the victim of erosion. Its north wall is pushed in by rockfall and its south side is far from ground level.
Rubber dock boots still sits under the desk in the dock office, near keys to rusted locks and files of fired employees.
The bottom of the stairs leading from the work floor to the cafeteria.
A big sliding fire door opens onto a train dock.
An interesting crane in the back of the machine shop. It seems very light duty, so I am not certain what it was used for.
I love this original brick archway, near the narrow gauge shop. Gorgeous!
A portrait of the second school of McConnell, built in 1937.
The historical entrance.
While the maps name this the compressor house, I believe, based on its size and number of heavy machine mounts, that it also housed the pumps to drain the mine.
A common room with a big bay window that overlooked the main entrance of the hospital.
A sheik mustard-yellow paint scheme across the roofless engine house goes great with the industrial moss and rust.
The office was redder than the rest of the building.
These tubes would bring cement to the top of the plant for storage in the silos.
Sliding fireproof doors and an old hydrant at Harlowton’s old yards.
The truck scale is closed at Lena, MB.
Looking through the old brewhouse toward the Keg Wash House.
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.
In this section of the Men’s Ward, sealed by brick from lower floors, the room doors had messages painted in their inside–some motivational, some not. I would be interested to hear if anyone knows the backstory of this section. Lighting is natural; it was just after sunset.
The entrance to the area where staff could sleep.
Taken on a short trip where the whole floor of the roundhouse and engine shop was covered in fresh snow–thanks to the holes in the roof and open windows.
The arches of the Twohy building, before some of the signs and sills were painted in 2015.
“Place Tripod Here” my friends would say. But for me, it’s the money shot. Note the painting around the inside of the skylight.
This train shed was later converted to load trucks with concrete from the silos.
At sunset the light skips from puddle to stagnant puddle across the whole foundry room, playing with the classic sawtooth roof with half-hearted shadows.
An employee lunchroom with every door and window covered in vented steel.
Paperwork litters the floors of the zinc mine offices.
Looking toward Mitchell from its last building.
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.
The portal facing Taconite Harbor (at a healthy distance) is mostly closed. Some kids put bullet holes in it. Shooting down a long tunnel is extremely dangerous, and you should not do it, obviously. Mamiya 6/Portra 160
Tunnels interconnected all of the complex, carrying power, steam, laundry and food throughout the hospital. This is a typical causeway that would have been very busy when the hospital was operating. In some places, signs still point to defunct areas of the hospital.
The building collapsed except for the back room. The slats of the roof cast lines of light across the floor.
Heavy wood doors for keeping people in.
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.
The piano must have been a nice distraction; there is very little to do in Roberts.
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.
Before each warhead was crated, it was inspected.
A heavy steel security door, taken right off its hinges. This was likely installed after Grafton State School took over the hospital.
2016. A section of the third floor that has changed a lot over the years. Compare to 2006 shot.
In the many-windowed metal building, the lumberyard buildings and the abandoned starch works buildings are separated by a thick wall of pallets.
I love these heavy rolling doors in the old tobacco processing building.
Kodak Tri-X 400/Leica M7. The office (first floor), laboratory (second floor) and mill behind it. Everything was clean and pristine.
An unintentional skylight makes the inside of the office glow, showing the inside of the front door and its strange lock.
Inside the main entrance to the depot. Through the ‘To Station’ door, you can see some of the news stands. Look at the floor!
In the power house corner is this gratuitously gigantic doorway. It used to be even bigger, too, as indicated by the brick arch another foot over the top windows.
Inside the main entrance is a whiteboard and mirror, then it branches into discrete spaces.
What you see is not a crack in the floor, but a long vine extending ten feet onto the shop floor, as if reaching in to escape the wind and rain.
The shaft house, where hydraulic steel doors allowed or denied entry into the mine shaft. Overhead is a light and alarm. If it sounds, the mine is being evacuated, and you best not go in and best stay the hell out of the way. Locals dump tires here, now.
Upper Prize Street in Nevadaville earned the nickname ‘dogtown’ when a pack of dogs took over the abandoned houses.
Mold creeps up the walls of the offices that housed the Closing Team of the TCRC – Twin Cities Research Center – as water damage pulls ceiling tiles down.
A skyway 100 feet above this office crumbled one day. This is what happened when those two met. High-impact love.
A colorful boiler is a happy boiler! RotoGrate systems remove ashes from the boiler firebox by revolving the bottom of the system to let the fly ash drop into a hopper. This greatly increases boiler efficiency.
Almost all of the doors and windows on the ground floor have been boarded, leaving the ground level very dark.
Beautiful doors separated the boiler room and the sugar mill. Can you imagine the gracefully curving steps in a power plant today?
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.
Between the repair shops and the stock department is this odd little structure. No, the walls are not level–it’s not your eyes. The shops slope left, the structure slopes right.
The roof could be vented when locomotives were running inside.
Note the severed skyway–that led to a set of grain elevators that have since been demolished.
Everything is texture.
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.
A few of the stalls in the older section of the roundhouse, the noon sky peeking in.
The top floor of the Chateau was the original surgical suite. Later, hydrotherapy took place here. When Nopeming was converted to a nursing home, it was a place where residents watched movies. Portra 400 on Voigtlander Bessa.
Not ghosts. Slow-moving explorers’ shadows create a ghostly effect in the ‘Old Ward’–the second floor of the Service Building.
Originally, this part of the dock was reserved for the weather station.
On the extended engine bay…
Taken several years before the tornado story when the weather, and the condition of the buildings, were nice.
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.
Lost words over the auditorium entrance.
A dead work truck rusts near an outbuilding. Everything is marked with a code. Modernity.
As my friend Jonathan would say, “on a human scale.”
In the ward for the criminally insane, this door was the most-worn. Nail scratches mark the area around the peep hole, the wood is gouged everywhere from thrown chairs and hard kicks, and a ominous blood-colored stain is visible where it dripped in the second inset from the bottom. Aside from the damage, the coloring in this section was very vibrant, though it was probably little reprieve for those who had to work here.
Sunrise in the orphanage… between classrooms and whispers.
Heavy steel doors to isolate the underground magnetic separation mill from Eagle Mine’s main tunnel.
A side door for the brick factory.
Part of the unremodeled hospital, above the Service Building, where employees would stay sometimes.
This wide skyway connected two of the inner factory buildings, where parts would have to be transported to keep the operation moving, which is why it is much wider than other bridges in the plant.
The license plate reads “Farm Truck”.
Looking down into the lunch building of an Atlas D, near the motors for the retractable roof. In this design, the roof separates to allow the missile to be erected into launch position.
I am not sure, but I think this section was a storehouse; it has two ramps that connect the rail yard outside and the blacksmith shop. On all of the historic doors that face that part of the yard, signs caution workers to look out for cars…
A high-ceilinged room where kegs would be delivered for cleaning, before they were refilled with fresh booze.
These racks lined many of the floors, although I couldn’t decipher their purpose. Tastes like duotone…
Glowing observation windows–and someone forgot to lock a patient’s door…
The gauges on left of frame are the steam pressure indicators for the various steam-powered components around the ship, like the steering engine and windlass motors. Below the gauges are a case of tiny wooden parts drawers… note the ancient oiling can on the locker near the upper-right corner of the frame.
On the top floor of the former casket building is the finishing line for the coating section; on this section the final spray of plastic would hit the wood before a small furnace would seal the plastic permanently to the surface, making it more resilient, I assume.
Looking out at the abandoned neighborhood around the house.
A window for light and air pokes above the big arch in the hallway. Most of the interior ceilings were broad brick archways.
The side of the church, taken from a grungy sidewalk.
Gloves hang in the basement of the former quality assurance labs.
A storage vault for guns and other weapons to protect the base from attack.
An elevator to bring big somethings into the basement, it seemed. Nearby were the plant firetrucks, still ready to go. I hope they were saved.
The moon highlights the contrails over the engine house in the middle of the night. Foreground light painted.
2006. A section of the third floor that has changed a lot over the years. Compare to 2015 shot.
The incinerator’s hardened steel door… useless, but still sexy in a heavy-industrial kind of way.
When ‘men’ meant ‘worker’.
In the back of the warehouse is the old incinerator, probably used to destroy kegs that could not be reused.
Behind one of the kitchens is one of the few pieces of furniture remaining. Beside it, a small electric space heater–small by 1970s standards.
There’s a roof problem above the surgical suite.
A big door into the fire pump room.
A bumper sticker with the usual tagline. Note the detail on the radiator!
A small stage in one of the barracks.
The new steel door of the diesel car shops, built in 1948 and used through the 1960s, as seen from the service pit. On the top of the photograph you can see the exhaust vent.
The floor IS the machine…
This was a living space for the keepers during storms, when it was too dangerous to return to the houses on the point.
A look at another “Belt-o-Vator”. I like the sign.
The back wall of the ballroom, showing water-warped floors.
In the nurses’ dormitories, beds, couches and chairs still sit. It’s unclear whether these are remnants of the homeless shelter in the 80s or the actual nurses.
This is one of my favorite doorways (yes, I have favorites) for a few reasons: 1.) You can see how the once-arched door has been squared-off for rectangular doors to fit; 2.) you can see one complete historic door and one ruined door, and the chain that used to hold them together before someone kicked-out the security, and; 3.) I like the texture of the bricks and design of the radiators in the room beyond–the blacksmith shop. Just do.
It’s pretty unusual to find a fireplace like this in the midst of a factory.
Perhaps this office was for a film studio or music producer.
Jef throws open the back door of an alley for the trailing photographers and historians.
The nurse’s station on this floor, a ward still in its original design, featured a half-door where patients could get their medicine. Portra 160.
Sawdust is the most classic of insulation materials.
The curving corridors flanking the Administration Tower are especially ornate, though the prison-like door betrays the real purpose of the building.
Connecting the Administration Building to the wards fanning out. Historical photos show cots lining this hallway when the hospital was severely overcrowded. Lit by lightning outside the grounds during a huge thunderstorm.
Stairs and power lines enter the abandoned depot. Shingles slide off the rotten roof. Ektar 100/Mamiya 6
A rare door left on the workhouse. The stairs to the left led down into a flooded basement. Kodak Portra 160/Mamiya 6.
Easier-to-demolish parts of the power plant were torched apart. Catwalks to nowhere meant lots of dead ends.
The first floor hallway between conference rooms and the diesel lab at the center of the facility
The roof compromised, rain water rolls down the main stairway.
A better look at the rails in the floor, installed to help move heavy equipment around the building.
Aaron by the concentrator.
The large domed rooms were surreal.
The beacon was installed in 1938 and removed in the mid-2000s.
And I forget just why I taste / Oh yeah, I guess it makes me smile / I found it hard, it’s hard to find / Oh well, whatever, never mind (Nirvana, “Smells Like Teen Spirit”)