shadows

Tunnel Light

The newer tunnels were fitted with these fluorescent lights, although some skylights (block glass embedded in skywalks) let in some natural light during the day.

Buchannan Blues

The sun shining through one of the buildings; everything was overgrown.

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.

Federal Yukon and Capitol

Standing on the ruins of the burned Northern Pacific RR Freight House. It’s the best place to watch ships move around the harbor. Some things haven’t changed…

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.

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.

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.

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.

Lockers

Lockers for the boiler room workers.

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.

Thunder Bay Elevator

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

Main Assembly From Paint Dept

Far away, you can see the red lights on the steam plant smokestack. To the extreme right is the beginning of the Minneapolis skyline. Paint (where this was taken) and Assembly (where the blue light is) were connected with a long skyway that carried completed trucks to be painted. I assume the device in the foreground burned volatiles from the painting process.

Found Film

Perhaps this office was for a film studio or music producer.

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.

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.

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.

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.

Have One

My favorite shot of 2011; a rusty mold for a heart-shaped glass candy dish in its natural environment, so to speak.

Guidance

Empty equipment racks behind a missile launcher.

Dominion- Cracked Skylight

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.

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.

Boiler Blowers

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

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.

Ogilvie’s Complex

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

Mill Door

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

Building 402

Unloading boats had the option to take on fuel at Taconite Harbor. This building, among other things, pumped fuel to the dock.

Powder Kegs

These aluminum powder kegs were forgotten in storage.

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.

Repair Cart

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

Miller’s Creek

Miller Creek, in one of the wider sections that features a trout (as in the fish) canal in the middle of the drain. Even though it is underground, the fish are able to visit their breeding ponds upstream by swimming through the specially designed tunnel.

Safe Lab

In the quality assurance labs there is a old safe.

Creature – Brahm

The pitch of the roof is more typical for areas with lots of snow—not the border of Ohio and Kentucky. So, I assume this roofline accommodated some equipment inside for trains—note the tracks.

Lighthouse Basement

The spiral staircase ends in the basement, where two oil tanks (for the lantern) and a freshwater tank (for the Keeper) were stored. The basement consists of two long arched vaults like this.

Brewhouse Levels

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

American Crane

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

Peeling Ceiling

The iron holding up the plaster ceiling is rusted to the point the weight of it is bending it right over.

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.

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.

Entre

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

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.

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.

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.

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.

Skylights

A view of the hallway outside of the auditorium.

Railyard Projection

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

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.

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.

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.

Lost?

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

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.

Headroom

The rumors were true. Success is sweet.

Nitrating House

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.

Rail Dock

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

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.

Underfoot Underdock

The underside of the ore dock in winter. Snow drifts across the dock from the frozen lake.

Cracked Wall

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

RP1 Shadows

The missiles were stored without fuel, to help prevent mishaps. This is the fuel pumping building and one of the tanks.

Gary Methodist

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

Shop

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

Silverton, Colorado

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

Five Stacks

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

Female Ward

The common rooms bulge out of the institutional geometry of the wards.

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.

Basket II

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

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!

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

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.

Old Brewhouse Skylight

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

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.

Dead-End Bridge

A bridge crosses the main street of the village; one that goes nowhere. Ambiguity intended.

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.

Water Tower

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

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.

Pitfall

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

Old Tanks

Looking from the mill at the old transfer elevator’s steel tanks.

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.

Not An Exit

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

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

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.

Man Behind the Window

The man behind the curtain watches, but doesn’t say anything. Probably the smartest one in the room.

Curtains

This little curled yellow thing is one of the last hints that this adobe building was lived in.

Coffin Quarantine

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

Under Fort Liege

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

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.

Dock Light Shadows

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

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.

Pool 8 Door

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

Open Silos

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

Dock Wall Door

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

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.

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.

Tank

The light next to this acid tank was perfect, thanks to a gaping hole in the roof.

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.

Sequence

The side of a launcher, with outbuildings in the background. You can see the tracks where the roof would open before launch.

Shadow-Boxing in Ashland

The light masts are there, but it looks like the cables that stretched across the dock with the actual lights have fallen down.

Say Remiss

For reasons unknown, this building’s concrete was designed a little thinly. It reminds me of a Chicago, IL building constructed during WWI when concrete and steel were strictly rationed and many buildings went up with insufficient superstructures. I do not have a build date for this one yet.

Charles M Beeghly

The Beeghley was launched in 1958… you can see it unloading limestone here with its retrofitted self-unloader. Update: This ship has been renamed the ‘James L. Oberstar’ after the Minnesota Senator. [Read more on Boardnerd.com here: http://www.boatnerd.com/pictures/fleet/oberstar.htm]

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.

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.

Film: Stems

The old truck scale sits in the middle of what was Nettleton Avenue Slip.

Belt Thrower

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

Water Fountain

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

Cafeteria Door

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

Anteroom

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

Conveyor Bend

A sharp turn in the coatings department twists the steel out of sight.

Ghost

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

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.

Bunny

Not necessarily a children’s room.

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.

Crack to See From

Glowing observation windows–and someone forgot to lock a patient’s door…

Stair Landing

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

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.

In the Trommel

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

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.

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.

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.

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.

Top Floor

Dirty filters for some equipment hang, awaiting a purpose.

Hallway, or Tunnel?

The guts of the dock are connected with a long narrow hallway. Below this section are shops and labs.

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.

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.

Pink Room

The vibrant colors clashed with the silent hotel.

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.

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.

Rows of Arches

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

Gate 5C

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

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.

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.

Rogers Shops Panorama

This is what the mine shops look like from the road between Gaastra, MI and Rogers Location (formerly Bates, MI). The community was renamed for the mine, probably under the heavy influence of M.A. Hanna.

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!

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.

Last Chapel Pew

On the boarded-up first floor of the house proper near the door to the chapel, the last pew sites next to a wet box of Bibles.

Dock 2 at Sunset

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

Third Floor, 2006

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

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.

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