In what Studebaker called the ‘Materials Building’ are these giant concrete bins of fine molding sand, there for casting metal parts using the molten metal from the adjoining building. On the far left side there is a train track and once upon a time a gantry crane traced the room under the roof
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.
This is one of the modern nurse’s stations where the last inpatients lived in the mid-2000s. The windows are thick shatterproof plastic. I am unsure why the suspended ceiling is missing.
Part of the unremodeled hospital, above the Service Building, where employees would stay sometimes.
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.
2006. A section of the third floor that has changed a lot over the years. Compare to 2015 shot.
On the second floor of the former carpentry shop, originally the delivery wagon shed.
These stairs lead to the balcony.
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.
Not ghosts. Slow-moving explorers’ shadows create a ghostly effect in the ‘Old Ward’–the second floor of the Service Building.
Rows of offices under the power plant, which was in the middle of being demolished during my adventure. Despite the snow, this was meant as an interior.
A typical narrow hallway at Birtle.
The green-tinted skylight makes this a bright green corridor, the lower of the two skyways connecting the two workhouses.
The main floor of the hospital was crammed with furniture.
This is the far interior of the hotel, where the darkness made the shag carpet seem to move whenever the trees outside swayed. That is to say, constantly.
Each room is painted a different hue, so the light reflecting into the hallway carries those colors. The blue padding on the left is for one of the padded rooms…
This section retains water and is mostly shaded, so moss has found a way to live in the concrete.
It was obvious which parts of the hospital were the newest, by their relative utter self destruction. It’s comforting to the Cubical Dwellers, I think, to know that as soon as the power and plumbing are disconnected that all hell will break loose and dismantle their suspended ceilings, drywall boxes and fluorescent suns in no time at all.
2016. A section of the third floor that has changed a lot over the years. Compare to 2006 shot.
…somebody get the number of that truck! Near the Day Rooms in the Paying Patient ward.
Peeling paint reveals the room numbers of the past. Kodak Trix-400 on Canon T40.
The first floor hallway between conference rooms and the diesel lab at the center of the facility
As if they were planning to move the furniture out of the hospital, it all sits in the main hallway in the ground floor.
That floor isn’t dirt–it’s old rotting grain that’s formed into a sort of moldy mud.
Some of the doors had sliding plastic windows, but most of the older ward doors simply had these peep holes drilled through them. The inside was always marked and worn more than the outside.
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.
The nitrating house was a chemically dangerous place, so it had thick metal and concrete shield for every station right next to an emergency shower.
Heavy wood doors for keeping people in.
The interior of one of the curved corridors that connect two wards. Note the original floor’s hand-laid tile pattern. Portra 160.
Reflections of graffiti during spring melt.
Laundry chute to the basement, as seen on the top floor.
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.
Water damage dissolved the ceiling into sludge. Pillars remain, as do the plastic light covers, now on the floor.
Looking toward the Female Infirmary Ward from the long, glass, Conservatory hallway.
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.
Four A.M. was the best time to be on the main assembly line. This was about shortly after most of the machinery was removed.
Spare parts ready for this building’s reactivation.
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.
Looking through a secure ward door at the destroyed rooms beyond.
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.
A view of the hallway outside of the auditorium.
This old ward, not a victim of remodeling, still has metal screens over the open windows of the doors. It should be obvious why glass were not used.
The stock house tanks were long scrapped for their steel, but what remains gives a sense of what it looked like.
This bay would host boxcars as workers would fill them with the fruits of the factory.
I can confirm the existence of the long-rumored Federal Rectangle Research Institute labs.
A mix of brick and stone construction where the stock house meets the cellars. The caves brought well water to the brewery and drained the refuse away, and the various sewer connections are visible here and tell the story of the company’s expansion above.
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.
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.
The tunnels were full of bricked-up doorways. I wonder how many rooms under there are totally sealed from the outside world…
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 there was a row of double rooms on the left and a common room on the right. Now, in a way, it is all one big common room.
Inside the main entrance is a whiteboard and mirror, then it branches into discrete spaces.
A typical hallway in the rocket assembly line.
On the left is a bathroom, which is why it has the wire mesh over the door; so it could be locked and still be ventilated. On the right side are small double-bed rooms, which still have their heavy wooden doors. More attractive than jail cell doors, but serving the same purpose.
This higher level floor was cleared out ahead of a failed development plan. The skyscraper office building suddenly became something that looked like a parking ramp.
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.
It seems someone planned on stealing the fridge, but gave up on the second floor.
Almost all of the doors and windows on the ground floor have been boarded, leaving the ground level very dark.
A broken roof drain turned the fourth floor into a skating rink. Frost covers every surface. Kodak Portra 400 in Voigtlander Bessa.
The guts of the dock are connected with a long narrow hallway. Below this section are shops and labs.
Part of the grain dust venting system, dislodged from its place above the dumping hatches under the grain cribs.
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.
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.
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.
The second floor of one of the houses is done in bright blue. This building has since been severely vandalized.
A view of the government presses, with pages of law across the floor covered in footprints.
My guess is that the Capitol Hotel closed and Adler bought up some of their equipment.
Looking toward a void–formerly a hallway to the mineshaft–now a hole in the ground.
Behind the small stage is a hallway signed by practically every act that walked through its doors. There’s also a pair of palms. Since all the heat in the building collects in this area, it did seem more tropical.
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”.
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.
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.