Don’t you love the shape of the house on the right?
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.
This peak is a little over 7,000 feet high and is a popular hiking spot. As a bulky Minnesotan who is better built for an arctic expedition, I stuck to the mesa.
That floor isn’t dirt–it’s old rotting grain that’s formed into a sort of moldy mud.
A typical Chateau wall. Kodak Tri-X 400 in Leica M7.
The Peavey logo, before it rusted off and the offices were demolished.
A quick shot with a Voigtlander 15mm f/4.5 (V1-M Mount). Possibly my favorite lens. Birds love these postindustrial ruins, and they hated me exploring and photographing them.
Shot on a Pentax 67 in monochrome and toned to match the set. For some time the marquee was lit at night to advertise the fact that the city bought it and planned to apply for credits to repair it.
Kodak Tri-X 400, Leica M7. Serious enough to write across the side of the tank, but not serious enough to have a sign made.
Ektar 100/Mamiya 6. A ghost town near Martinsdale, where the market (pictured) served as the train stop.
A wide view (15mm) of the shadow 4B is casting on 4A. Light leaks because of cheap camera.
A broken roof drain turned the fourth floor into a skating rink. Frost covers every surface. Kodak Portra 400 in Voigtlander Bessa.
A sentinel stands watch over an abandoned Hannah, ND house. Medium Format.
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.
Camera: Voigtlander Bessa
Film: Acros 100
A typical workhouse scene, captured minutes before on Fuji FP100c instant film.
A shot of Longmont from the highway. Fuji 35mm.
The interior of one of the curved corridors that connect two wards. Note the original floor’s hand-laid tile pattern. Portra 160.
A circular common room in one of the original parts of the hospital. When the asylum was especially crowded, this would be filled with patient beds, too. It’s very strange that this floor was not tiled like the other common rooms. It makes me wonder if especially dangerous patients were kept in this ward; those who could not be trusted to not extract and sharpen the ceramic tiles. Portra 160.
Looking toward the famous Duluth Aerial Lift Bridge from Lake Superior. Shot on a the legendary Pentax 67.
The red brick elevator is reflected in the flooded railyard. Note the saturated red square on the elevator, where the ‘4’ was scrubbed off. FP-100c.
The newer train barn for the SK Pool 4 complex has a car tipper that would clamp and turn the grain cars to dump them into hoppers. FP-100c.
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.
After crushing, these machines would float lighter material to the surface of the water, where it would be skimmed and discarded. Gold and silver laden stone would sink to the bottom, where it was collected for the next stage of processing. Leica/Summilux 35/Ektar 100
Gulls check in on me while I climb around the roof of one of the train shds of SWP #4. FP-100C.
Ektar 100/Mamiya 6.
Looking out the window a the foundations of the demolished company homes.
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.
A row of houses north of Pommenige.
One of the walls of the train shed was growing, thanks to a little bit of sunlight and a constant trickle of rainwater over it. FP-100C.
I had to climb into the roof of the half-demolished skyway to see through to the other side of the train shed. That’s my foot in the corner.
Looking north from the east portal of the tunnel… a beautiful place. Wilderness. Mamiya 6/Portra 160
The coal extractor swings back and forth, ripping coal from the ground and throwing it on a conveyor belt to be burned a few miles away.
An abandoned house at Tilston, MB.
King Elevator sits in the corner of a more recently-defunct lumber mill: Great Western Timber. Perhaps in the future I will write the history of it. Arista 100 in 120.
Kat dancing down the trestle, which is one of the highest in the state, standing about 100 feet over the road. Mamiya 6/Portra 160
Looking at the tallest part of the plant from a skeletal loading dock. Kodak Portra 160/Mamiya 6.
This part of the workhouse was sheathed in fiberglass, but now you can see its insides from a mile away.
A great lakes freighter slowly passes SK Wheat Pool 4 with ‘The Sleeping Giant’ in the background. Arista 100.
This building was 99 years old when it was demolished for the coal mine.
Looking at the concrete headframe from street level. Acros 100 in Pentax 67
Scanned after being recovered from the bottom of an old wooden box for a few years. Circa 2005. The only photo I have showing the steam locomotive out front.
A social club/restaurant that was likely the place to be late at night.
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
Checking out the neighbors. Shot on a the legendary Pentax 67.
The annex casts a long shadow over its old headhouse and the former UGG (currently Vitera C) elevator. Arista 100.
The steam plant at Nopeming is an iconic (and crooked) smokestack. Kodak Pro 400 on a Fuji GX680.
West Elevation of the Depot. Ektar 100/Mamiya 6
East Elevation of the Depot. Ektar 100/Mamiya 6
One of the principal businesses in McConnell was a farm implement and lumber store. This is too new to have been bought there, but I like that it’s still on the edge of town. It’s more comfortable than the emptiness beyond, that used to be a little prairie town.
One of Martinsdale’s defunct businesses perpendicular to the depot. Recall that Martinsdale is a T-town.
For some time, Purina ran a feed service out of the elevator. Inside and outside were signs of its past presence.
The Calumet Elevator offices used to be flanked on both sides by rails. Now, only one side has engines running on it.
The gulls wait to eat the next load of spilled grain. Arista 100.
The floor of this first floor bathroom, Men’s Ward, was unlike any other I remember in the hospital. Hand-laid tile, but the pattern made it seem even older than the rest of the hospital. Portra 160.
The depot at the head of town seems to be being disassembled. Behind it is a dead signal where the tracks used to be; they’ve been pulled.
The first 800 or so feet of the tunnel is finished with reinforced concrete. The test is raw stone. This is the spot where it switches. Side note: nailing this shot on film is one of my proudest light-painted moments.
Between blizzards on the hill, I look out over the Chateau. Kodak Portra 400 on Voightlander Bessa.
The old offices for the Oberon Elevator are defunct, but seem to be holding up to the brutal prairie snows and winds. Medium Format.
The old truck scale sits in the middle of what was Nettleton Avenue Slip.
Sliding curtains gave a little privacy to the residents of this room, which looked and felt more medicinal than most of the other multi-patient rooms.
Kodak Tri-X 400/Leica M7. The office (first floor), laboratory (second floor) and mill behind it. Everything was clean and pristine.
Archeologists believe the great house on the mesa was rebuilt shortly before it was abandoned in the 13th Century AD. Tri-X 400 Film, haphazardly self developed.
Part of the grain dust venting system, dislodged from its place above the dumping hatches under the grain cribs.
Beautiful belt wheels above the grain cribs. Getting to the spot where this was taken is now impossible, and I don’t know whether these remain or not anymore.
A row of houses north of Pommenige.
Water vapor was collected and condensed to be reused in other processes. Kodak Tri-X 400/Leica M7
The great stenciled number on this chute caught my eye.
Looking toward Sleeping Giant from the workhouse.
Camera: Pentax 67.
35mm Film, Expired. An abandoned swath of NAD is landlocked by soybean fields.
One boat comes into port while three wait. The birds, fat from spilled grain, circle overhead. Arista 100.
The front of the mill reads “Montana Flour Mills Company”
At the extreme eastern end of the plant is a bank of modern concrete silos. Kodak Portra 160/Mamiya 6.
Scanned after being recovered from the bottom of an old wooden box for a few years. Circa 2005.
Vents in the boards over the windows helps prevent mold and animals from getting too crazy inside.
The only door into a large windowless concrete room, probably a storage bin. Kodak Portra 160/Mamiya 6.
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.
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
A me-sized hole in the half-demolished skyway looks about a story down to the ground. Step lightly. Arista 100.
Kate shooting the cascade of rotten boards and steel siding that is Chain O’ Mines’ gold mill. Leica/Summilux 35/Ektar 100
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
The metallic arms of the missile erector, which would stand rockets over the blast pit in the launch position. Medium Format film–cheap but excellent Fomapan 100 in a Pentax 67.
A rare door left on the workhouse. The stairs to the left led down into a flooded basement. Kodak Portra 160/Mamiya 6.
A polaroid (FP100c, actually) of the newer grain car dumper.
I slid into the mill through the top floor, near where the rock-grinding ball mills were left to rust. I look around, taking in the most intact gold mill I’ve ever explored. Movement attracted my eye to the ceiling, where I found something staring back, a raven was observing me with some interest. It had been a while since I have brushed up on the folklore and mythology, but I took it as a good sign. Leica/Summilux 35/Ektar 100
An old sign in front of the elevators that used to constitute Saskatchewan Wheat Pool #4. Kodak Pro 100.
A photo from the early 2000s before the conveyors were scrapped.
Chairs facing the stage in the old cafeteria. Fuji FP100c in Fuji GX680.
A stray cat at hunts mice along the elevator row at Inglis, MB. Film: Fuji FP100C.
The kitchen in the services building has a beautiful red and white checkered tile floor. Kodak Portra 400 in a Voigtlander Bessa.
We people are so small.
Looking out of the demolished skyway. Note the big hole in the floor. The lens is too wide to keep my foot out of it… I’m hanging in the superstructure that I climbed to make this photo.
You can almost make out the concrete chute through the open window. Kodak Portra 160/Mamiya 6.
A train idles beside the Calumet offices. Pentax 67 Medium Format
The stairs that connect the breakwater and light station (Leica M6/Kodak Ektar).
Elevator B, used by a local farmer, stands behind an old farm truck at the edge of town.
The side of the Boissevain Manitoba Pool elevator has a mural showing the equipment and inside the structure! Film: Fuji FP100C.
Camera: Pentax 67. Film: Kodak Ektar 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.
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.
These long curved corridors connected the wards. Locked doors on both of their ends were a security and comfort feature. Sounds and people would be sealed in their respective wards, as the hallways would act like beautiful airlocks; they were so long that it was unlikely that doors would be open on both sides at the same time. Portra 160.
Perhaps this office was for a film studio or music producer.
Looking through a launcher doorway at an outbuilding… the fire truck garage, if I recall correctly. Fomapan medium format in Pentax 67.
The back of the mill reads “Red River Milling Company”
I love the ‘hats’ on the top of the SWP-4 headhouse. FP-100C.
Peeling paint reveals the room numbers of the past. Kodak Trix-400 on Canon T40.
This tree caught my eye. Note the bench swing near it. Portra 160.
C’mon, guys. PIck up to trash.
Both portals get clogged with ice in the winter. In the summer, the ceiling is always dripping. Mamiya GA645 / Kodak Pro 400
Frontenac’s shaft house is well preserved, compared to all other around it. Leica/Summilux 35/Ektar 100
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.
Inside the west portal is a big liquid propane hand warmer, for workers to take the cold off their gloves as they handled the switches and doors of Cramer Tunnel. Mamiya GA645 / Kodak Pro 400
Camera: Pentax 67.
The top floor of the Dominion Elevator. Acros 100 on 120.
On the dark side of the workhouse at sunset, you can almost see where the walls used to be. Kodak Portra 160/Mamiya 6.
One side of the street is demolished. The other is not.
Looking across at the Cargill elevator.
The roof of the King Elevator had two small vents and a terrific view of Sleeping Giant Provincial Park. Arista 100 in 120.
Taking a midwinter hike in Cramer after a blizzard and ice storm was my idea. Do my friends seem upset to you?
Mamiya GA645 / Kodak Pro 400
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.
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.
An engine on display outside the Montana Territorial Prison in Deer Lodge, MT. This was a typical electric locomotive used by The Milwaukee Road.
A defunct UGG elevator in Killarney, not far from where the Harrisons (of Holmfield, MB and Harrison Milling) once operated a small elevator. Medium Format.