shadows

Egomaniac – Brahm

The sun sets in front of a huge concrete building—about four times the size of the power plant. Probably a corn storage bin from an ethanol operation that ran here in the 1980s.

Sunset Behind Dock

The ice reflects the blue sky on the rust. The sunset blasts through the concrete pillars holding it all up.

Chutes

A staircase leads behind three of the dock chutes, seemingly to nowhere. The lower on the left held one end of a string of lights above the dock.

20 Person Life Boat

The aft lifeboat survived auction, although now all it holds is an emergency ladder to help men who’ve fallen overboard get on deck.

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.

Static Room

Seven TV sets and not one shows my reflection. I’d also like to point out not two of these are the same.

Altar

In its last years, the church had a congregation of only about 100. It opened with 1.700…

Cafeteria Door

Almost all of the doors and windows on the ground floor have been boarded, leaving the ground level very dark.

Tailings Boom I

Like a railgun pointed at the Rockies… the boom would direct tailings–junk rock–outside of the dredge pond.

LP Hand Warmer

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

Daisy Mill from Tanks

The building behind Daisy was demolished, leaving these tanks and a pointless conveyorway. Now it’s bricked (see over door near right corner of mill) and the tanks are exposed to the elements. There are a few holes in the area that have a healthy drop, so you should avoid the area.

Server Racks

In a protected wing of a launcher are these empty server racks where guidance and control computers were stored.

Workshop and Parts

The workshop and parts room was full of light and meticulously sorted bolts, nuts, washers, gaskets, and all sorts of specialty hardware.

Silo Door

After demolition in the mid 2000s, this interior door became exterior. I remember walking through the car shed as a teenager. It was a shortcut, if I didn’t get caught.

Not An Exit

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

Roundhouse Bay

The pits have long since been filled so the roundhouse could be used for storage.

Flywheel

The white mark allowed for a manual RPM check on this big steel flywheel on the ground floor. Note how dark the bottom level of the mills is—that’s because all of the equipment is blocking out the light.

Cabezon Peak from Guadalupe Mesa

The valley is full of rocky peaks that stand out from the winding creeks, which only truly run after storms. It is a very beautiful place.

Coffin Quarantine

Kate in the Atlas E, which is essentially a buried Atlas D. Above is the protective steel blast door.

Five Stacks

I didn’t test the rungs, but I bet the view was incredible.

Bunny

Not necessarily a children’s room.

Laundry

The laundry building, where many of the tunnels came to an end. It looks very East Coast industrial to me.

Coal Bin

My favorite shot from the trip. Later in its life, the plant was converted to burn its own byproducts, but it seems this was designed as a coal hopper.

Webster & Elevator S

This sea leg was installed to unload grain boats. It’s pretty much a big bucket elevator that can be moved and lowered into waiting boats.

Holmfield, MB- Harrison Milling

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.

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.

Pier B in Mid-Winter

These wide spools sit atop the abandoned tracks that lead to the train shed, which was later repurposed into a truck shed.

Powder Kegs

These aluminum powder kegs were forgotten in storage.

Water Fountain

A simple porcelain fountain in the original brewhouse. The water fountain, no doubt, is not original.

Basket II

A super-shallow depth of field shot on the Leica Summilux.

The Adler

The old hotel doesn’t like to show its age. Indeed, if it had a few paint job and soft remodel it would be fit to open–that is, if there was a need for it in this tiny rural New York town.

Decorative Cast Iron Sink

Some parts of the doctor’s apartment in the Administration Tower were decidedly upscale. Look at the beautiful ironwork on that sink!

Rail Dock

This dock goes between loading bays (see glass brick walls) and the railroad.

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.

Collapsing Lunchroom

In the corner of the foundry, this lunchroom was literally collapsing under one small leak in the roof. Tile by tile the water ate away the ceiling. Note the clock.

Skylights

Noontime light, long criticized for the boring shadows it grants photographers, comes into its own sometimes.

Half-Door at Sunset

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 Three Hundreds

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.

Film: Pozo Mine

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.

Missile Way

The BOMARC launch buildings are spaced on a large concrete pad that looks like a parking lot. Out of view are underground pipes for fueling and cooling the rocket motors.

Big Dipper and Duluth

Looking toward Duluth from the top of a Dock 1 light tower. NP Dock 1 is on the left… an earlier competitor to Allouez. The stars reflect on Lake Superior.

Conveyor Blower

Grain is taken from the bottom of the silos through a conveyor in a tunnel. These blowers keep the air in the tunnel fresh.

Ship at Allouez I

On top of the light hoop, 160-feet up, a ship comes into port, ready to load-up. If you look really close, you can see my shadow cast on the dock below, courtesy of the full moon.

Anteroom

Beautiful details in the plaster moulding have been preserved by the sheer height of this room between the cathedral and auditorium.

Shop Cabinet

You can see why so few products had bright packaging. If the can here was brown, you’d never see it in a dark wood cabinet.

Shop

The workshop sat below the main working floor and had serious power going to it.

Car Elevator Portal

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.

Belt Thrower

A wounded flour mill, muscled into the corner to keep out of the way.

Rows of Arches

Small rooms in the basement of the asylum were seemingly too tiny to be used, even for storage.

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.

Asylum Aphorisms

In this section of the Men’s Ward, sealed by brick from lower floors, the room doors had messages painted in their inside–some motivational, some not. I would be interested to hear if anyone knows the backstory of this section. Lighting is natural; it was just after sunset.

Sleepy Rockford Panorama

This gives you a sense for what it looks like to stand on the roof of the main production building at sunset.

Huron-Portland Cement, Duluth Plant

As photographed from a cement piling for Slip #3 poured in 1935, disconnected from land by erosion. How do I know the date? A pair of steamship engineers carved their initials and ranks into the wet cement!

Cafeteria

The great entrance to the Service Building shows the detail once present in the old hospital.

Shadows of Taconite Harbor on the James R. Barker

As the Barker steamed past the dock and island, the sunset casts the shadow of the Taconite Harbor receiving trestle on the boat. Through the fog, you can see some of the islands that were joined into a breakwater.

Oberon, MB

The iconic outline of a prairie sentinel. Quintessential rural industrial architecture.

Room #486, Criminal Ward

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.

Thunder Bay Elevator

Thunder Bay Elevator, now stands without a headhouse. Around the silos, a few shacks still stand.

Calumet Elevator- 1907 versus 1926

On the left is the 1907 elevator section and its 1926 expansion is on the right. Interesting how the century-old silos seem to be faring better. Windows provided light to the underground conveyor tunnels, which were used to bring grain out of the silos by gravity.

Old Brewhouse Skylight

A long exposure of the city glow illuminating the roof, highlighting the victorian and gothic influences on the brew house.

Looking Out A Window at the Starch Works

The layout and design of the buildings reminded me strongly of a brewery or distillery. To the right you can see some of the retrofits by the first lumber company to buy the buildings, in the 1970s.

Open Silos

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

Lockers

Lockers for the boiler room workers.

Pitfall

Taken several years before the tornado story when the weather, and the condition of the buildings, were nice.

Ogilvie’s Complex

The train loading tower (left), and elevators. Check out that giant flagpole/lightning rod.

Old Ward

Not ghosts. Slow-moving explorers’ shadows create a ghostly effect in the ‘Old Ward’–the second floor of the Service Building.

Administration

The first floor hallway between conference rooms and the diesel lab at the center of the facility

In the Trommel

Looking through the washer that is the first stop for the dredgings.

Lost?

The Atlas D command building. As Brutalist as it gets.

Pool 8 Door

The end of the new elevator. Line of bird droppings follow the fire sprinkler pipes and wires in the room.

Industrial Stained Glass

Different colors stained the small panes on the top floor. For once, it seemed more ridiculous to not be inside an abandoned factory.

Ash Piles

The copula where molten metal would pour is on the left. It seems the whole floor was covered in ash in front of it.

Third Floor, 2006

2006. A section of the third floor that has changed a lot over the years. Compare to 2015 shot.

Above the Stacks

The middle section of the smokestacks were coal hoppers, and this device would load the coal into the hoppers from the conveyor belt it rode across. The bottom section of the stacks were storage rooms while the very top were, surprise, chimneys for the power plant.

Spilled Taconite

It was interesting that, even though storms had carried the wooden walkway that stretched under the dock, these piles of spilled taconite remain where they had dropped.

Sinterband 3

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.

Bold in Blue

Standing on the ruins of the former sister dock, looking back at the soon-to-be-demolished family member. The pilings I stood on for the shot were those of the Chicago and North Western RR #3 which was dismantled in 1960 and used to be 2,040-feet long.

Stair Landing

The gothic landing between balcony and classroom level and the ground floor.

Abandoned News Stand

An abandoned news stand between the concourse and ticket booths. This is one of my favorite pictures from the 2000s.

Radome Ruins

The remains of the site radar beside the command building.

Melchoir’s Tunnel

A tunnel connecting the two larger caves in the hill; those that Jacob vented in the rear. The vents are still extant!

Marked Doors

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.

Mothballing by the Numbers

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.

Fourth Floor Corridor

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.

Dock Light Shadows

The dock is still lit at night and it casts shadows over the rust-welded ore doors.

Dock 2 at Sunset

Winter skies over Allouez Bay. From a distance, it looks almost fragile.

Old Coke Power House

One of the older buildings on the site, this is an old power house that provided electricity to the plant. I spent some time walking around it and believe it was fired with coal gas but had a diesel backup installed later.

Dan

He had the knees of a stallion. RIP.

Repair Cart

One of a few rolling workbenches to keep the thousands of pulleys, cogs, and belts working properly.

Ghost

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

The Full Distance

Standing on the fence barricade that used to keep squatters out of the tunnel, the size of the space is impressive. What you see here is the current length of the tunnel; I set up a flashlight at the end to illuminate the concrete wall that is the lower portal.

Mill Door

Beautiful doors separated the boiler room and the sugar mill. Can you imagine the gracefully curving steps in a power plant today?

Kurth Malting- Sunrise’s Dusty Gaze

Sunrise in SEMI. The shadow of Kurth Malt is cast across ADM-Delmar #1. Clouds behind ADM-Delmar #4 light up. It’s cold and the air smells like train grease.

Gauges

Below the pressure gauges are rows of little pipe fitting drawers.

Steeple Sunrise

Here’s the church, and here’s the steeple; Open the door and see all the people; Here’s the parson going upstairs; Here he is saying his prayers…

Safe Lab

In the quality assurance labs there is a old safe.

White Pine Mine Ruin

These concrete blocks were formed to be solid mounts for machinery. All the metal was scrapped in the late 1990s, leaving these modern ruins. Seagulls love them.

Tunnel Cart

A light-painted portrait of one of the few remaining carts that moved everything from fresh eggs to soiled laundry through the tunnels.

American Crane

A diesel crane and conveyor belt tripper are the major pieces of equipment that dominate the dock.

Two Hundreds

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.

Asylum by Starlight

Fergus Falls State Hospital. Well, technically moonlight… but a with stars nonetheless! The orange glow from the left and in the rear of the building are exterior lights on associated–former State Hospital–buildings. All other light is from the full moon that evening.

Storage Bunker

North of the assembly complex is a storage network of earthen and concrete bunkers.

Nordberg Hoist

The steam-powered hoist that pulled ore and dropped men from the mine. Note the hydraulic-operated brake on top with its massive brake pad. Now scrapped.

Lift

The elevator near the offices seemed a day’s work away from being operational

Bayard Mill

Bayard Sugar Mill, as seen from the old power plant

Dock Wall Door

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

FFSH Cemetery

The cemetery for the old asylum is, sadly, largely unmarked. Only in recent years has there been a real effort to locate and identify the remains there.

Top Floor

Dirty filters for some equipment hang, awaiting a purpose.

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

James R. Barker III

Shadows of the rusty trestle and cold control towers on the Barker. Workers are preparing to swing over the sides of the boat to help secure her to the Minnesota Power dock.

Water Tower

The water tower no doubt made good scrap after it hit the ground.

Launch Buildings

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.

Evaporator Innards

Either the company was pulling parts from this evaporator to use as parts for other plants, or the last thing the workers did was to get this machine ready for the next campaign. Either way, plans changed.

Cone Room

The scale of the grain hoppers helps tell the story of how large Hamm’s was in its day.

Max Pressure

I don’t think we’re anywhere near maximum pressure anymore.

Apartment Corridor

The top floor of the apartment seemed so empty without the furniture that once adorned it. Instead, my eyes were drawn to the worn paths in the floor between the rooms.

Port Sluice Room

Gold, which has a relatively high mass, would drop through the slats of the sluice boxes as the water flowed over them. Around the dredge were a half dozen radiator pipes to keep the water flowing through the machines.

Boiler Blowers

While the stokers are gone, the pipes bringing pulverized coal down were left.

Grand Stair

This ornamental stair is cast iron and used to connect all floors of the Administration building. Now it connects the first and second floor, then the third and fourth floors, with a strange cinder block and drywall barrier separating the new and old sections of the building. Note the insulation on the floor to seal heat into the lower floors that were used as offices until the hospital closed. On the corners of the staircase are lions, on the corners of the suspended section of stair are down-hanging pineapples. Set in the stairs themselves are shield motifs with slate tops.

Hoists

The hoist room, before it was used for storage.

Cracked Wall

I really like the way this high-ceilinged room is decaying. Well, decayed. It’s demolished now.

The Original Ward

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.

Pink Room

The vibrant colors clashed with the silent hotel.

Tower, After the Lightning Strike

The hospital was surrounded by walking paths that crisscrossed the front green, as it was called. Part of Kirkbride’s plan was to have ample opportunities for exercise outdoors–fresh air, especially cold fresh air, was thought to have curative properties.

Overpowered

A super-long exposure of the side of the middle of Daisy Elevator, built in 1927. The oldest silos are closest to the mill and date to 1916. They were expanded toward Superior in 1927 and 1941. The total capacity is about 500,000 bushels.

Railyard Projection

Harsh rail yard lighting throws shadows of broken windows against the line of boilers.

Silverton, Colorado

Taken as I drove out of Silverton, CO. One of my favorite landscapes of 2015. Want a print? Email me!

Nurse’s Station

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.

Backfill Self-Portrait

Partier graffiti dates to when the caves were last open to the public; probably in the 1990s. This tunnel used to horseshoe between the brewery’s ice chute (left) and basement door (right, backfilled). Note the utility tunnel in the upper-right corner as well as the lighting brackets on the ceiling.

Basement Kitchens

When Nopeming was affiliated with local farms, it often slaughtered its own livestock. This is the part of the hospital where food would be prepped, below the stage in the Service Building.

Down the Boom

Through a section of the tailings boom where mountain winds tore open the sheet metal around the conveyor, I poked my head out.

Hoist House

I included this image to illustrate the height of the headgrame and the distance between it and the hoist house. Of course, compared with the depth of the mine shaft, this distance is short.

Mill Controls

Though it’s a little unclear what control station controlled what function, these levers seemed to relate to some of the bigger equipment inside the dredge, such as the trommel.

Gary Methodist

“GREETING FROM BEAUTIFUL GARY–WISH YOU WERE HERE!” My postcard shot.

Twin Room

In an old ward, two men would have shared this room.

Sunset During Demolition

While the last of the Studebaker production buildings were being demolished, I visited again. Here’s a shot taken shortly after the demolition crew left for the day.

Vines

What you see is not a crack in the floor, but a long vine extending ten feet onto the shop floor, as if reaching in to escape the wind and rain.

Headroom

The rumors were true. Success is sweet.

Brewhouse Levels

A late look at the brewhouse, long after the stainless steel tanks were scrapped.

Acid Line

These ruins of buildings recovered acid from the explosives line to be recycled.

Eagle Mills’ Rusty Fasade

Blue skies and rust-pocked siding contrast the high-altitude blue sky. By the time I had worked my way back to the tram, it was sunset.

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