graffiti

Roof Walk

Often the quickest way to move between buildings was to take the roof. The inside of the complex was so maze-like, I don’t know how I would have found my way around.

Stoker Notes

In front of a rust-welded Illinois rotary stoker is where the boiler-men made their mark. The last year I can make out is 1985.

Capacity

Much of the signage in the mill was hand-drawn.

Pools

These pools looked into the cribbing below the concrete.

We Have Arrived

The most pointless, beautiful and nuclear-bomb-proof catwalk I’ve been on to date. It goes between two high levels in its own bottom-lit concrete capsule in the center of the tallest, thickest building. Hang on, we’re riding this one out.

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.

Sea Leg Motor

The winch that hauled the sea leg, a decide to unload grain from waiting boats and barges.

Sifters with Manlift

On the upper floors where the sunlight is yellow–the color of flour dust, once exposed to the elements.

Cheratte Dry Room

This is one of the rooms near Shaft 1 that was converted to be a Dry Room, where workers would wash and change between shifts.

Smoked Ales

Note the really old carvings in the mineral-stained sandstone on the walls and ceiling. This little cave was walled-off on one end, making me wonder what the area was for. Lighting is a set of three candles and two LED flashlights and a cigarette.

ADM Meal Storage- December Fog

Looking at ADM-Delmar #4, #1 and Kurth from the Meal Storage Elevator at sunset on one of the warmer days of December. Note the graffiti “United Crushers” that gave the big elevator its common name among locals. Also, Harris Machinery is sitting in the lower-left corner, awaiting word of its next use.

Concrete Meets Stone

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.

Lyric Offices

The back of the Lyric, including the offices at the back of the theater.

Hoist Controls

A burned and rusted control panel in the corner of the new hoist room.

Crating Building

The building on the right was where parts not assembled onto vehicles would be set in crates for shipment.

Upper Vault

A typical room in the barracks, reinforced from mortars and light shelling, possibly.

SWP4- The Monster’s Mouth

Looking up at the network of elevators at the Saskatchewan Wheat Pool. Its train shed doors stand open under the void where conveyors should be. You can see where they used to connect on the left and right. The outside of the building is covered in racist graffiti.

Dripping Rock Chute

Spring melt flows down the rusty rock house. In the background is the frame for the shaft.

A Factory Wants

This section of the production floor was constantly dripping. Someone had laid down giant plastic sheeting to attempt to protect the lower floors, but it hasn’t worked.

Waterlogged Logbook

I had to search the shelves a while to find this old logbook. The open page lists changes in stock numbers for Cutler Hammer Coils, and one row says that a new coil was installed on the black larry. The larry is the machine that loads coke ovens.

Ghost

The concrete annex elevator had interesting graffiti. Much of it from the 1980s and 1990s.

Bunker Beam

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.

Success

My first night on Minneapolis’ Lighthouse–now an old picture and distant memory… I still remember the exhilaration and the view of the city off one edge of the roof and the Mississippi River over the other.

Not An Exit

A splash of pink across an otherwise boring sign caught my eye in the old elevator.

Parking Lot

The parking lot is in better condition than most of the complex. The left building is the lab.

Control Room

The long control room overlooks giant caps where equipment was removed long ago.

9am in the Mine Shops

Algae grows where water flows/From the sawtooth roof/To the mines below/The sun climbs high/But is in no one’s eyes/A wall alone crumbles/It was no suprise

Rauchfang

The smokestack for the sintering plant included a big blower room, to launch the fumes into the atmosphere and away from the town. What could go wrong?

King- Ruined Office

A skyway 100 feet above this office crumbled one day. This is what happened when those two met. High-impact love.

Dock Wall Door

The city constructed a wall in the early 2000s to discourage visitors. Note the staircase is cut off, too.

Under Fort Liege

A tunnel between the outside gate and the courtyard shared by the barracks.

Tire Dump

Many outdoor areas of the plant have become unofficial city dumps. The skeleton doesn’t care.

Receiving Room Panorama – (C)SUBSTREET

A panorama of the Shipping/Receiving building on the northeast end of the block. In the old days this would be facing the ‘Dry Dock Hotel’, a boarding house owned by the company, presumably for the use of the men having their boats repaired here.

The Original Tumblr

This might have been part of the Pioneer Pellet Plant. It looks to be a ball mill, which pulverizes ore by spinning it with thousands of ball bearings.

Low Gain

I like to imagine this as an old-timey radio microphone.

Orphan Chapel

From the boarded-up choir loft above the chapel, minutes after sunrise. Obviously local kids have long had their way with this landmark.

Profile – (C)SUBSTREET

Sunset came fast, and when the good light died inside the Industrial Loft, I walked around the back to find the whole complex glowing.

Colorful Night

At night the city lights blast through the broken windows, casting crazy colors through the off-white interior of the mill.

2012 collapse

Additional Sacred Heart Building (1949) Collapse, 2012, Courtesy Chris Naffziger @ http://stlouispatina.blogspot.com/2011/12/st-marys-infirmary.html

Broken Dust Pipe

It seems like this pipe was made to return dust to the collector in the main workhouse from the annex.

Carved: PAIGE

In the soft wood of the machine, an employee left their mark.

ADM-Delmar #1- Skyway Demolished

Panorama from where the skyway connected the cleaning house and elevator. ADM Meal Storage is to the right, ADM-4 is to the extreme right, and Kurth is on the left.

Carrie Tower

Looking at the engine house (left) from atop the stoves.

Brach’s Headquarters

The office building was fancy compared to the utilitarian factory behind it. My favorite part was the logo crown.

Cheratte Shaft No. 3

Looking through the dark door at Shaft 3, when my naked eyes could only make out a staircase lit dimly from above.

Gate 5C

It’s not hard to see how Germany could turn these into a prison overnight.

Lost Going Nowhere

This was one of two skyways that went between production line offices. It’s easy to tell because it’s not reinforced for machinery to travel through it. I also like that it’s a double-decker, so to speak.

Tankless Brewhouse

Even without the kettles the Hamm’s brewhouse is beautifully lit, ornamented architecturally and begging for photographers to remember it.

Banksy Ripoff

At this junction where Brewery Creek gets a breath of fresh air stands a kid holding a paintbrush: a Banksy (famous graffiti artist) ripoff.

Detroit Algae

This section retains water and is mostly shaded, so moss has found a way to live in the concrete.

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.

Brach’s Interior Corridor

Where the trees are sprouting–below the skyways and criss-crossing pipes–are two sets of railroad tracks that turned through this narrow alleyway through the middle of the production line to drop off raw materials and pick up finished product.

From the Old Mill

This is part of the oldest section of factory, one that hasn’t had a roof in a long time and all usable equipment has been extracted. The machines pictured would spin sliced beets in boiling water… it was a sealed system before someone cut holes on sides of each unit.

Interurban Tourguide

Jef throws open the back door of an alley for the trailing photographers and historians.

M2 – (C)SUBSTREET

The bricks routinely fell from the walls, like seeds falling from trees. On a smaller scale, new walls grew from the floors.

Art Project

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

Foggy 51

The cold air collided with the sun-warmed water on the floor, filling the ground floor of the Keg House with thick fog…

Fragile Death Trap

To the right is the spiral staircase. This building had a definite “floor problem”.

The Wall

Next to the pit in the maintenance shop is “The Wall”… where rail workers wrote about interesting happenings at Shoreham.

Grand Staircase

The grand staircase with little balconies leaning over it. All the stone stairs are broken and graffiti marks every wall.

Collapsed Outfall

A ruined culvert near Oregon Creek, behind Old Main, the predecessor of the University of Minnesota-Duluth.

custer had it coming

Found in one of the rooms that hosted an inpatient chemical dependency unit in its later years. Connect the dots yourself.

Warehouse Elevator – (C)SUBSTREET

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.

Backstage

A wide view of the hallway behind the small performance space, covered in hundreds of names, aphorisms, and acts that walked up the stairs to the right and onto the small stage.

Drop-Dead Hoist-House

Hanging over the crane cab, looking over at the trane-sized doors below. The steel beam tracing the left wall is the support for the gantry crane this photo was taken from.

Slagway

Between the catwalks of Furnace 6, the molted ore would flow through the chute.

Vines in the Workshop

Across the walls of the brick repair shop, near where men and machine entered Shaft No. 3, vines, pipes, and graffiti battle unknowingly for visual prominence.

Stock Office

Old parts catalogs litter the floor. The office overlooks empty shelves. Graffiti glue peeling paint in place.

Graffiti on the Blacksmith’s Door-(C)SUSBTREET.org

The doorframes become more askew every year as the buildings slip downward into the gulch at different rates. This seems to be the part of the mine ruins where transients leave their marks. The graffiti dated back to the 1970s, at least.

SWP4- Car Dump (Polaroid)

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.

Mine Cart Shop

In this old repair shop, vines fall from the rotting roof to meet mossy concrete. Even though it had been dry for days, water dripped in from the roof to make permanent puddles between workstations. It was full of color and sound and industry and nature.

Levels

A 8-foot-tall volume indicator that could be read from across the beet boiler floor–convenient when the controls are 20 feet away.

Brewery Creek Waterfall

Brewery Creek Waterfall, somewhere above Duluth. Lit with candles and a small LED panel. To me, it looked like a pipe pouring molten metal.

Grain Feeds

I tried to hide the graffiti from my photos, but sometimes it wasn’t possible.

Distrubution Room

All electrical rooms were surrounded by walls, for obvious reasons. Now all the walls are gone, for reasons less obvious.

Third Gate

An iron gate separates vaults below the barracks.

Annex Work Floor

The top of the annex was bare except for these holes into the silos below.

Open Silos

Go on and jump in, if you want, there’s even a ladder to climb out.

Elevator Door

Like many mill-style buildings of the time, the Twohy’s loading doors (in this case, the delivery wagon doors) opened to an elevator shaft. This design cut down on loading time, as long as the elevator was operational. Of course, if it was otherwise occupied, there could be no traffic through the exterior doors!

Concrete Plug

Looking into the cut made for the streetcar tunnel. It looks like there is a door in the wall, but it’s an optical illusion.

Ghetto Courtyard

Sleeping bags mark this former courtyard as a crash pad for the local homeless.

Erekt

The buildings were level with one another, so one could look through as many as a dozen factory floors from one window.

Selby Tunnel Portal

The lower portal of the Selby Tunnel, as it looks today. The area is a popular spot for homeless to camp–can you spot the tent?

Treppenflur

One of the staircases that connected the lab, the plant, and the offices.

Huge Skyway

A number of skyways carried the production line across roads and railroad tracks in and around the plant. An identical skyway to this one was cut off sometime in the past decade (judging by the rust), probably for its steel.

Entre

An unplanned skylight. It’s unclear why some parts of the building had wooden roofing, while others were highly reinforced with brick.

Shaft No. 1 Tower

Looking through skylights of the payroll office toward the Cheratte No.1’s tower. This is where workers would wait in line to receive pay, surrounded by the mine workings.

ADM Labs- LIVE

Looking up at the most conspicuous graffiti in the city on ADM #4.

Teenage Art Gallery

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”)

Machine Stand – (C)SUBSTREET

The east side of the boiler shop sported a platform with a control booth and heavy machine mounts. Note the door that replaces the lower section of stairs for explorers.

King- Abandoned Scuba Building

What appears to be a building once associated with King Elevator is now a defunct scuba company. To the right of the frame you can see how the concrete on the elevator is beginning to show its rebar.

Glass Block – (C)SUBSTREET

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…

Stair Problem

These stairs were probably removed to discourage scrapping and graffiti. Ask me if it worked.

Skyway

The exterior of the factory is unassuming

Swirl – (C)SUBSTREET

Generations of Two Harbors teens smoked their first weed in this abandoned building, in my estimation. Comment if I’m right!

Paint Line

The entry point for the painting shed on the top floor. Cars would have a few feet in between them before they entered. Separate sheds would prime and add color.

Outbuilding (Fomapan 100)

Looking through a launcher doorway at an outbuilding… the fire truck garage, if I recall correctly. Fomapan medium format in Pentax 67.

Love You

The classic Solvay shot. Everyone has it.

IN MINE

A board to track which miners are underground. Low tech, but very effective.

Twelve Steps

This ward was the last occupied place in the hospital. It was used as a chemical dependency (drug and alcohol) inpatient program. It seems that they were allowed to paint the walls before they abandoned it… I go back and forth, thinking it is a shame and thinking it is a little cool.

Mural

A depiction of historic Liège, known for its rivers and hills.

Hoist Operator Booth

Peering through the glass in the Hoist Operator’s cab, stained with graffiti. The cable and reels can be seen through the glass… these are now gone.

Oven Valves

In what has turned into a kind of industrial courtyard between four ovens some people have posted their tags. X was here.

Fort Liege Sign

A sign facing the city on an exterior wall–a sort of motivational poster.

Office Hallway

The only thing that signals that this was an office building, rather than another production floor, is the small amount of wood paneling that remains.

Twin Caves

The left cave is the largest of the three, and shows the most evidence of expansion.

Missile Loading Door

This heavy door opens directly into the missile vault and was used to load and unload the missile erector.

Hoist Room Panorama

On the left is the broken glass room that contains the controls for the cable spool, now gone, that sat in the metal shell on the right. The stairs led down to the hoisting engine itself. You can make out the slits where the cable ran up to the headframe tower through the gaping archway.

Side of the Coating Line

Note the rails in the floor that guided cars to the coating line, the side of which is lined with the windows in the center of the image.

Clowns

Strange graffiti in a side room. Someone was having fun…

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.

GMF Ladder

Ladders crawl the back of the signs. Graffiti writers’ right of passage.

Survey

“See anything?” “No, just more of it.” “How much to go?” “Oh god–we’ve only seen about 10%.” “Guess we should keep moving then…”

Saturation Controls

In the modern control room at the base of the white elevator tower are the electronics that ran the newer building, its rail components and boat-loading component. The superstructure permeates all spaces here, as can be seen with the crossing I-beams in the main office.

SWP4- Too Many Pool Parties

Saskatchewan Wheat Pool #4 looks rough these days. You can tell how high the children of Thunder Bay can throw a rock.

Blast Walkway

Just outside of the blast furnace is a series of platforms and catwalks to bring workers to the stoves.

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