The top floor of the nitrating house was full of switches and breakers for the operation below, each bearing a label and number. Nowadays everything is printed, but when INAAP was built, all these signs were painted by hand.
Thousands of tags in a supply closet. Each has lots its meaning.
These copulas made the iron for casting.
Beside the shaft building are two fans on skids, indicating they were used underground.
A wimpy crane by most standards, only suitable for moving around parts of steam turbines.
Peeling paint reveals the room numbers of the past.
The great stenciled number on this chute caught my eye.
Miscellaneous math and strange instructions remain all across the shipment section walls. Sadly, this section likely fell into disrepair before the others.
Jars like these were used to measure the volume of fluid pumped out of TB patients’ lungs.
Gary Methodist was a filmset for Transformers 3 in 2010.
Unit 4’s lower levels.
A closeup of a flour chute.
“W.N 7-30-86”. Brick Graffiti Series.
Presumably, in a nuclear blast the antenna would be blown flat and pop back up, allowing communication even after a near-direct hit.
Much of the milling equipment predated the mill itself, so I would not be surprised if this particular machine really dates to 1860.
Part of the unremodeled hospital, above the Service Building, where employees would stay sometimes.
One of thousands in the complex. Part of a series of photographs where I capture the number “13” in industrial settings.
Carvings on the back of a barracks building.
Work never done.
All of the fire alarms had been triggered.
The curving corridors flanking the Administration Tower are especially ornate, though the prison-like door betrays the real purpose of the building.
Most of the gauges on the control panels were broken.
A 8-foot-tall volume indicator that could be read from across the beet boiler floor–convenient when the controls are 20 feet away.
Detail view of one of the fermenting tanks, still set-up for the distillery tours that no doubt took place when there last were such things. Nevertheless, the capacity of this tank multiplied across these all over the distillery floor really shows the power this company once had.
Pipes to channel nitrose (think nitro glycerine) infused acid through the building.
Looking up the tallest structure left at ACME.
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.
Typical bunk rooms in MS-20.
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.
An original stencil-brushed sign.
The top floor of the Dominion Elevator. Acros 100 on 120.
Before developers saw to cut and cut the flour mills inside Pillsbury, they stood at the ready beside various purposeful chutes the traversed the floors of between sorters. These machines were belt-driven by the power of Pillsbury’s Mississippi headraces and turbines, the force of which notoriously shook the building’s foundations themselves. The wheels would change the grade of the flour, or the size of the dust produced from crushing the kernels.
Part of the 1917 mill that had a little bit of roof left over it–most of this building was open to the sky. The birds loved it, but everything metal was quickly becoming too unstable to walk on.
Looking across the catwalk behind the ore chutes, when they were up, and at the top of the ore chutes during loading.
A chalkboard halfway to the headhouse is untouched since the mill closed. It still has the cheat sheets!
The left wall is stacked high with wooden crates holding spools. Tags hang on machines describing the last batch of silk the mill ever produced.
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
An Old Crow warehouse, formerly federally controlled, near Old Taylor Distillery.
With the maintenance door open you can see the buckets on in the vertical conveyor.
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.
One of the covered rail loading docks. All of them were overgrown and rust-clad.
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.
Unloading boats had the option to take on fuel at Taconite Harbor. This building, among other things, pumped fuel to the dock.
A few of the stalls in the older section of the roundhouse, the noon sky peeking in.
This building was 99 years old when it was demolished for the coal mine.
Two bin signs criss-cross in the North Annex.
Leather shoes in a supply closet. They seem to me men’s shoes.
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.
An alarm panel in the powerpplant, now demolished.
A primitive intercom system connected the various wards to their respective nurse’s stations. They looked hand-made and likely originated, in part, in the FFSH carpentry shop. They were often placed high, like this one, to be out of patient reach.
The bricks routinely fell from the walls, like seeds falling from trees. On a smaller scale, new walls grew from the floors.
The ’59’ is just a reference to that work station. Unfortunately the scrappers beat me to this machine–there was not much left besides the 2-ton shell and this control panel.
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.
On first impression it might look like a funky mailbox, but trust me on this one; it’s a flour bolter chute. In flour milling, “bolting” means sifting the flour through successively smaller screens.
The texture of the cracking poured concrete ore pocket is somewhere between stone and driftwood.
I found a historical photo of this room showing 10-foot high machines with wires hanging by the mile from looms and schematic charts.
Note the tiled floor between the bucket conveyors and an old mill.
2005. A skyway connecting two Which tube carried the beer? I hope it’s the big one!
A sign hanging near the shop office.
Between the gauges for the power plant boilers and the steam pump flywheels.
The corners of these buildings are inscribed by a century of bored rail workers and delivery drivers. Pictured is the southeast corner of the Twohy, which is typical of mercantiles.
The scale of the grain hoppers helps tell the story of how large Hamm’s was in its day.
No wonder the factory shut down; everyone was scheduled to work 9 to 5 and the clock’s broken! (In all seriousness, this is/used to be a beautiful timepiece, especially for a utilitarian factory like this.
Sugar mills have endless numbers of pipes, washers, seals, and flanges to connect all of the equipment. This is where the spare parts were all stored by size and rating.
An insurance office.
The chalkboard in the filtering plant reminds new visitors of the last day.
The end of the new elevator. Line of bird droppings follow the fire sprinkler pipes and wires in the room.
Local kids probably call this the ‘Shootin’ Shack’, judging by its war wounds.
An old stoker in a power plant that was abandoned long before the mill next to it, by all indications. Sugar mills burned dry beet pulp pellets for fuel.
This building looked like some sort of office.
This building seemed like a pump house or compressor house. It was full of empty concrete mounts.
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.
A detailed look at the side of one of the thousands of transformer boxes in the war city.
Standing between pockets 1 and 2. You brought hearing protection, right?
Peering into a remote office at Manitoba Wheat Pool #3. Someone left their to-do list behind.
North of the assembly complex is a storage network of earthen and concrete bunkers.
In the nitrating house.
Candy jar molds, in the far corner of the paint shop.
Scrawls on the side of the beams of the ‘Pipe Shop;.
Every timber pillar was numbered for maintenance purposes.
An old name for an older elevator, as seen from an abandoned rail spur.
One of the four fire alarm panels in the power station.
In the mine offices, hooks and a board with numbers was the system to keep track of who was in the mine and who was safe.
A shipment board for customers that may or may not exist anymore. Let’s assume any of the products made here are probably on backorder.
The Engine House’s boiler, which would have been fired all day all day, virtually from the day the shop opened until the day it closed.
A broken-down wooden grain chute.
Scrappers tried to take this steel pulley out of Fisher, but it proved too heavy.
A whiteboard in the quiet turbine room lays it all out… you should sell.
The workshop and parts room was full of light and meticulously sorted bolts, nuts, washers, gaskets, and all sorts of specialty hardware.
An engine on display outside the Montana Territorial Prison in Deer Lodge, MT. This was a typical electric locomotive used by The Milwaukee Road.
When the factory’s production line was up for auction, many parts were removed, crated and labeled with big painted numbers to ease their removal by buyers. Not everything sold, however, so not one dark corner of the factory seems without a pile of dislocated industrial junk.
The old crane swung on windier days over the Worthington Steam Pump. This is probably last used to disassemble the antique generators, which are all now gone.
A sign of where man met machine.
The Dock 5 sign at track level. Probably as an aid to sailors reboarding their vessels.
Goals for 1980, still tacked onto the wall.
At noon, the lower skylights around the shops glow yellow-green, thanks to the flora blooming on the roof above.
If you know what BTI stands for, please leave a comment.
The rear of engine bay 13… according to the heavily faded sign.
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.
Power-up to cool down… would have been nice on the hot day I climbed on top of this machine.
Looking into the Argo Tunnel at its Idaho Springs portal. I was hoping to see tracks and a steel door, but found a busy crew of environmental workers installing a pipe between the bulkhead and new water plant.
Fantastic brick graffiti piece by a Duluthian in 1933! Is the stick drawing of a horse? Feel free to weigh in.
A clicky-flippy clock is having some kind of malfunction.
A bank of vertical filing cabinets, probably dating to National Guard days.
Where workers’ pay would be doled out and collected.
A closeup of the now-scrapped steel chute.
The largest extant structure when I visited.
This machine was last overhauled in February 1955, and last turned out Crepe silk, probably dress material.
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.
#67, one of the only lockers that is not crunched to the point it refuses to open. In the corner of the small office area.
The ice reflects the blue sky on the rust. The sunset blasts through the concrete pillars holding it all up.
In the grungy control room, I found a little slice that was never graffitied.
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 roof of the elevator was partly lit naturally with six big skylights. The less electricity pumped into a grain elevator, the less chance of a grain dust explosion.
Don Crist ’83. Brick Graffiti Series.
Park Insurance Agency is no longer in business, nor would you be able to dial that phone number.
Peeling paint reveals the room numbers of the past. Kodak Trix-400 on Canon T40.
Hard to find your seat when it doesn’t know its own name.
Looking into the Pool 8 Annex from the original Ogilvie’s elevator.
Much of the signage in the mill was hand-drawn.
These machines had embossed metal numbers marking their ends.
Atop Elevator ‘M’, formerly Cargill ‘O’.
Looking down range. You can tell where most of the rounds hit by the dark marks in the wall.
Some of the internal staircases were fitted with cages that wound round down the stairs to deter suicidal patients from taking a dive.
Shelves in in the coloring department, where hundreds of different mixer lids are splashed with hardened glass dyes. Color thanks to a yellow-tinted skylight.
When the Mitchell project is complete, I’ll miss the textures on the face of the boiler.
The cold air collided with the sun-warmed water on the floor, filling the ground floor of the Keg House with thick fog…
One of the many small treasures hiding in the mill…
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.
Compressors and turbines over the Eagle River.
Vines are finding their way into the roundhouse.
Some sort of materials handling building, judging by the construction.
A handmade sign tracks the progress through the current beet campaign. For this factory, it was about 30 years ago. Perhaps the idea was to pit shifts against each other.
Asbestos rope isn’t something you can buy at Home Depot anymore, but it’s fire and heat resistant stuff; great for industrial work, like in a sugar mill.
The control room for the whole of the plant. Sinterband here means one of the sintering lines. Temperatures, gasses, mixtures, speeds, and so on were centrally controlled here.
Sprays of water kept the muddy mixture flowing across the sluices, which filtered out gold particles from gravel and dirty.
Allouez had already suffered one major fire. It didn’t need another–especially under Dock 1’s wooden approach.
Without proper pressure, the steering engine was ineffective.
This miner locker room has probably never been so clean.
My favorite time to be in the brewery was sunrise. That’s the kind of light that made the brewhouse glow.
Because there’s no Port-a-John underground.