This is what it might have looked like if a new Ford descended in the elevator with its headlights on. As seen from the Mississippi side–the opposite portal faces the sand mine.
The only way to get to the second floor–since demolition crews punched-out the staircases and ladders leading upwards–was to climb this elevator shaft. In the lower-left corner is a blower for the foundry furnaces.
A reminder to the manlift riders to get off the belt before they hit their heads on the ceiling. This is the top level of the headhouse, where dust collectors would extract most of the grain bits from the air to reduce risk of explosion.
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.
One of the prettier Humphry Manlifts in Minneapolis, in my opinion.
An old fashioned lift.
A closeup of the key to the Dominion (aka Government of Canada) Elevator manlift. That it needed such a guide does not inspire confidence.
Labeling line elevator.
I wish I had the equipment then that I have now… I look back at these 10-year-old pictures and can’t ignore all the grain.
This is an elevator to move mine car loads of sand to the surface for cleaning and eventually glass production. Below is a flooded equipment vault. In front and behind is a loop through the larger tunnels in the mine. The horizontal braces supported electric cables for the mine carts.
On the ground floor of the main factory there seems to be only one chair left.
This load of lime seems to have been left right where it was loaded.
A crashed freight elevator.
90% of Brach’s looks like this. Concrete walls, mushroom pillars, and water over the floor.
I’ve been in a lot of different mines. Some on tours, some not. If you pass through Howardsville, Colorado without going on the Old Hundred Mine Tour, you’re missing out. This is what Santiago Tunnel looked like in the 1940s when it was near the end of its life.
Looking up at the end of the dock at the night sky, with just the hint of the Northern Lights in the sky.
One of the clusters of elevators. Doors would open on both sides so that vehicles could be moved through them if necessary. There is only one set of stairs in the whole building.
The top floor of the condemned Russell Miller mill “B”, which would have housed sets of powerful electric motors to power the plant’s dust collectors and grain purifiers.
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 elevator is stuck between floors.
The bridge here moved workers between the dock, the approach tracks, and refueling buildings.
Looking up the Dominion Elevator’s tower. I especially like this picture because it shows how so much of the electrical conduits wound round through the mostly hollow space.
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.
The elevator near the offices seemed a day’s work away from being operational
An old handcart sits next to a rotting elevator.
The left tunnel goes to the opposite side of the car elevator seen on the right. There was a time when Fords were shipped by barge on the Mississippi. This freight elevator brought them from the assembly floor to river level. A separate elevator was for moving men and silica up and down.
The bottom of the elevator in the new foundry.
In the corner of most of the factory floors, freight elevators flanked restrooms to leave more central space for machines and their masters.
The elevator tower seems to have been built with expansion of the dock in mind.
Looking down a manlift on the ore dock side of the elevator. It’s a belt-less belt-o-vator!
An ajar car elevator car afar, technically.
The steam plant could be vertically traversed with this one-man belt driven elevator.
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 first floor of the Industrial Loft building.
Mushroom pillars hold up the dreams of so many, the profits of so few.
A look at another “Belt-o-Vator”. I like the sign.
Why the elevator cars were removed or who removed them is unclear to me, but I do hope they still exist somewhere outside of a Honda frame. Judging from the decorations heaped on the doors and their frames, the cars themselves must have been beautiful.
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.
This elevator came crashing down, perhaps from the topmost floor. I wonder what it sounded like.