The pits have long since been filled so the roundhouse could be used for storage.
When Nopeming was affiliated with local farms, it often slaughtered its own livestock. This is the part of the hospital where food would be prepped, below the stage in the Service 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 old way to get to the elevator from the mill.
Call me angsty, but I like it. Found in the Auxiliary Hospital.
Vines are finding their way into the roundhouse.
A small wood-paneled office for the on-duty keeper to use.
The license plate reads “Farm Truck”.
A look at another “Belt-o-Vator”. I like the sign.
The factory’s first aid room and laboratory. Sure makes me wonder how safe the lab was!
Safety signs decorated every floor, machine and, yes, door. This message spoke to me for reasons my coworkers will understand; suffice to say, I need to take this message to heart.
Office manners dictate that one must tip their file drawer back upright once it is knocked through the wall.
Bayard Sugar Mill, as seen from the old power plant
The end of the new elevator. Line of bird droppings follow the fire sprinkler pipes and wires in the room.
“Place Tripod Here” my friends would say. But for me, it’s the money shot. Note the painting around the inside of the skylight.
An ajar car elevator car afar, technically.
The modern morgue, a replacement for the original morgue which has since been turned into a kitchen area.
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.
The piano must have been a nice distraction; there is very little to do in Roberts.
Inside the main entrance is a whiteboard and mirror, then it branches into discrete spaces.
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.
This “pit” would allow workers to crawl below locomotives to service them.
Gary Methodist was a filmset for Transformers 3 in 2010.
The bathtub fell into the basement, ala The Miller’s Tale. That’s right. Chaucer.
The wings of the church had a lot more water damage than the rest. The organ on the balcony was in decent condition when I arrived.
When ‘men’ meant ‘worker’.
Originally, this part of the dock was reserved for the weather station.
Part of an ongoing series on found American flags in shuttered factories.
It was a strange choice, although I appreciate it, for the firm reusing the shops to brick up the doorways while leaving the doors.
Old boathouses near the dock.
Fire doors separate the buildings.
On the second floor of the kettle building where corn mash was boiled, holes where tanks once sat were everywhere.
The incinerator’s hardened steel door… useless, but still sexy in a heavy-industrial kind of way.
Looking into the main workhouse from the skyway into the annex elevator. But who care? Look at the colors!
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.
In the corner of most of the factory floors, freight elevators flanked restrooms to leave more central space for machines and their masters.
There’s a roof problem above the surgical suite.
Sleeping bags mark this former courtyard as a crash pad for the local homeless.
A portrait of the second school of McConnell, built in 1937.
Heavy steel doors to isolate the underground magnetic separation mill from Eagle Mine’s main tunnel.
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.
Taken several years before the tornado story when the weather, and the condition of the buildings, were nice.
Looking across the catwalk attache to the elevated control room, in charge of the train dumping part of the operation.
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.
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.
The tallest dock structure is an equipment elevator that connects the many dock levels.
A common room with a big bay window that overlooked the main entrance of the hospital.
Standing where the Standard Oil’s boiler used to sit; the coal room is on the right, and would have been filled from trackside.
The side of Stelco and its scrubber-stacks. This is demolished now.
The substation has definite structural issues. Pictured is the sidewalk that connected the plant to the company housing.
2006. A section of the third floor that has changed a lot over the years. Compare to 2015 shot.
Not ghosts. Slow-moving explorers’ shadows create a ghostly effect in the ‘Old Ward’–the second floor of the Service Building.
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.
The old truck scale sits in the middle of what was Nettleton Avenue Slip.
The stone chapel sits beside the main house and received a particularly heavy dose of gothic architectural touches.
The large domed rooms were surreal.
A warped mirror in the rock crusher at the rear of the complex.
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.
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.
A side door for the brick factory.
The curving corridors flanking the Administration Tower are especially ornate, though the prison-like door betrays the real purpose of the building.
Note the wood and rubber wheels on this powder cart.
In the back of the warehouse is the old incinerator, probably used to destroy kegs that could not be reused.
Looking from the ‘crack’ that shows a collapsed tunnel into the dry house, in the direction miners returning home would walk. Note smoke lines above door.
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…
A bathroom in the rear of the ballroom that overlooks the Rose Garden.
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.
You can tell from the marks on the wall that there used to be pipes running the length of this square hallway, which connected a loading dock with explosive mixers.
A bumper sticker with the usual tagline. Note the detail on the radiator!
Why the door had to be moved over 2 1/2 feet will remain a mystery.
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
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.
The floor IS the machine…
An unintentional skylight makes the inside of the office glow, showing the inside of the front door and its strange lock.
One of the few doors.
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.
2016. A section of the third floor that has changed a lot over the years. Compare to 2006 shot.
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”.
Kat’s pretty cool.
“Man has set for himself the goal of conquering the world but in the processes loses his soul.” Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, Russian writer and historian.
I can confirm the existence of the long-rumored Federal Rectangle Research Institute labs.
Note the maps still left on the wall.
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.
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.
Watching the comings and goings of doctors, nurses and new patients was a mainstay of asylum routine; one can find it easy to imagine pale faces pressed against the block glass windows, staring out at the world moving past them.
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”)
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.
Looking to the chapel addition from the Chateau.
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.
The stonework was done by a local handyman of sorts, who was also a guard at a nearby insane asylum. He did a great job, it seems to me.
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.
The historical entrance.
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.
An employee lunchroom with every door and window covered in vented steel.
Aaron by the concentrator.
These racks lined many of the floors, although I couldn’t decipher their purpose. Tastes like duotone…
The sidewalks are littered with rocks.
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.
In the middle of one of the outlying cottages, perhaps the Masonic Cottage–it was too damaged to tell, really–are these pair of skinny doors that led from patient rooms to a common area with rotting shag carpet.
The front door to the auditorium.
The building collapsed except for the back room. The slats of the roof cast lines of light across the floor.
A comrade lights-up where so many workers apparently congregated to do the same.
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.
The view into one of the asylum rooms of Norwich Hospital. A long time ago, a window broke, letting the vines crawling up the bricks outside to move indoors and across the floor.
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.
In one of the hundreds of bunkers across the busy highway from the empty plant ruins. Most did not have doors, but I got lucky on this one.
The bottom of the elevator which seemed too modern for the building. The top of the elevator opens into open air, as the second floor has long since collapsed.
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
Rocket propellant and coolant were stored underground adjacent to the missile silo. This is the hallway that connects the missile area to the propellant area. Walking in this area was nice because the floor was dry.
A view of the hallway outside of the auditorium.
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.
This dock goes between loading bays (see glass brick walls) and the railroad.
Miscellaneous math and strange instructions remain all across the shipment section walls. Sadly, this section likely fell into disrepair before the others.
An old nurse’s station (you can tell because of the half-door with table) with torn-up tiles. Notice through the curved doorway that even the ceiling has a curvature.
Books in nooks and not getting a look… about the crook with hooks that cooks.
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.
Sliding fireproof doors and an old hydrant at Harlowton’s old yards.
As my friend Jonathan would say, “on a human scale.”
This ornamental stair is cast iron and used to connect all floors of the Administration building. Now it connects the first and second floor, then the third and fourth floors, with a strange cinder block and drywall barrier separating the new and old sections of the building. Note the insulation on the floor to seal heat into the lower floors that were used as offices until the hospital closed. On the corners of the staircase are lions, on the corners of the suspended section of stair are down-hanging pineapples. Set in the stairs themselves are shield motifs with slate tops.
A typical narrow hallway at Birtle.
The mostly-empty distilling room is easy to spot from the outside because of the distinctive round window.
A wimpy crane by most standards, only suitable for moving around parts of steam turbines.
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.
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.
The top floor of the Meal Storage Elevator.
The Wheeler Rec Center was very nice and included gymnasiums and a pool.
No ambiguity here… miners, check in at this office.
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.
Hip bump girl.
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.
Looking out at the abandoned neighborhood around the house.
The largest room was the diesel laboratories, which tested various devices and fuel additives to make it safer to mine underground with diesel trucks and other machinery, such as at White Pine Mine, Michigan.
A broken window looking through the First Aid Room and into the Control Room in charge of directing grain into ships. You can see one of the large conveyors on the right, clad in green. Chutes and staircases intertwine seemingly randomly through the big empty spaces.
The machine shop today.
From the 1909 addition, it’s obvious how much water it takes to carry a single wall to, into and through the cracks between the floor tiles: exactly one roof’s worth.
The side of the maintenance shops, still home to several disassembled electric carts.
One of the occupied buildings in Nevadaville.
I love these heavy rolling doors in the old tobacco processing building.
Jef throws open the back door of an alley for the trailing photographers and historians.
A bunk room, minus the bunks.
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.
Pillars painted red indicated firefighting supplies. Fire was a very common enemy of early rail facilities, and many roundhouses burned down because of a combination of dry wood, hot, fire-breathing machinery and countless oil-saturated surfaces.
Expanding foam provides some textural contrast to the wood floors, worn smooth over a century. This building dates to the 1890s and was built as the coffin plant.
Numbers on a pillar counted tank capacity for a removed water container; an unhinged door in an unhinged factory beguiles those looking for an exit.
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.
Note the severed skyway–that led to a set of grain elevators that have since been demolished.
S&X seen in the background through the fog.
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.
An insurance office.
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.
An unplanned skylight. It’s unclear why some parts of the building had wooden roofing, while others were highly reinforced with brick.
These stairs lead to the balcony.
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 pink room with very heavy doors that reminds me of the rooms at some of the insane asylums that I’ve explored.
Some of the internal staircases were fitted with cages that wound round down the stairs to deter suicidal patients from taking a dive.
Looking through the old brewhouse toward the Keg Wash House.
Before each warhead was crated, it was inspected.
The grain-centric buildings had automatic fire doors.
Gloves hang in the basement of the former quality assurance labs.
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 top floor’s old-fashioned hospital ways were too much to pass without a photo or two… with the paint falling off the walls it was as if the building was shedding its skin in an effort to become rejuvenated or useful.
The bottom of the stairs leading from the work floor to the cafeteria.
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.
I believe this is the push car, meaning it would push the charge in the oven out the opposite side into the train car.
A high-ceilinged room where kegs would be delivered for cleaning, before they were refilled with fresh booze.
An automatically closing door, in case of fire or flood in the engine compartment.
The first floor hallway between conference rooms and the diesel lab at the center of the facility
A side door on the rear of the castle that let guests out into a small stone courtyard below a tall turret.
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.
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.
The beacon was installed in 1938 and removed in the mid-2000s.
A rare door left on the workhouse. The stairs to the left led down into a flooded basement. Kodak Portra 160/Mamiya 6.
Left: A medium storage chamber with access to an interconnecting steam tunnel at ceiling height. This room also has various smashed toilets. Why? Because dead toilets–all of them–always find a home in a cave. Center: Steps go past a +-intersection, left goes deeper, right goes to utility tunnels for the brewery, forward used to go to the brewery basement… it’s now backfilled. Left from the backfill is a small hallway; see ‘Backfill Self Portrait’. Center-Right: Utility tunnels tie knots between the brewery’s demolished basement and its caves. Right: Most of the storage volume is in large chambers down this causeway.
The roof compromised, rain water rolls down the main stairway.
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.
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.
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.
A blue chair in a blue room
Hunter and the Hoist House.
The moon highlights the contrails over the engine house in the middle of the night. Foreground light painted.
I wanted to see the third floor to get a better view, but the third floor had already been demolished. The old walls had cascaded down the staircases. This building is gone, now, as you can expect.
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.
Unloading boats had the option to take on fuel at Taconite Harbor. This building, among other things, pumped fuel to the dock.
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.
Many of the higher floors were more or less demolished–usually more. These would have been condos had ‘The Arcade’ project come to fruition. Now there are simply wide open floors punctuated only by pillars and meaningless hallways.
This picture shows all three areas of the substation. In the foreground is the transformer room, the tallest space. The darker room in the middle is the motor generator room. The room at the end through the door is the control room and office area.
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 west portal of the tunnel is open, and if it wasn’t for the rough track, I would think by looking at it that a train could be coasting up behind me any moment. Mamiya 6/Portra 160
This used to be one of the office doors, but it’s been removed (apparently without malcontent) and placed in the shop area.
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.
It’s pretty unusual to find a fireplace like this in the midst of a factory.
A skyway 100 feet above this office crumbled one day. This is what happened when those two met. High-impact love.
One of the storage bunkers was cracked open. I wonder how effective this heavy door would actually be… I expect, not very.
The side of the church, taken from a grungy sidewalk.
Typical bunk rooms in MS-20.
Looking through a secure ward door at the destroyed rooms beyond.
The only door into a large windowless concrete room, probably a storage bin. Kodak Portra 160/Mamiya 6.
Looking toward Mitchell from its last building.