shadows

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.

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.

Cracked Wall

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

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]

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.

Peeling Ceiling

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

Radome Ruins

The remains of the site radar beside the command building.

Max Pressure

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

Tank

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

Third Floor, 2006

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

Entre

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

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.

Guidance

Empty equipment racks behind a missile launcher.

Top Floor

Dirty filters for some equipment hang, awaiting a purpose.

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.

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.

Dock Wall Door

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

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.

Altar

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

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

Man Behind the Window

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

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.

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.

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.

Tailings Boom I

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

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.

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.

Anteroom

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

Not An Exit

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

Server Racks

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

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.

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!

Ghost

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

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.

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.

Cafeteria

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

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.

Laundry

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

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.

Bunny

Not necessarily a children’s room.

Sequence

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

Crack to See From

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

Acid Line

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

Under Fort Liege

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

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.

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.

Ash Floor Beams

Sunbeams under the sintering belt. Support cradles for the wires crossing the factory are falling down.

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.

Skylights

A view of the hallway outside of the auditorium.

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.

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.

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.

Silverton, Colorado

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

Safe Lab

In the quality assurance labs there is a old safe.

Old Brewhouse Skylight

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

Gary Methodist

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

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.

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.

Rail Dock

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

Twin Room

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

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.

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.

Underfoot Underdock

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

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.

Open Silos

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

Red Dock

Negative twenty looks much warmer in retrospect, wouldn’t you say? Taken through the window of a gantry crane cab.

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.

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.

In the Trommel

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

Repair Cart

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

Thunder Bay Elevator

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

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.

Auger Floor

This floor of the workhouse had corkscrew conveyors–big augers–in the floor to move material around. Most of the walls that were metal were missing, leaving the concrete structure and open doors.

Sunset Behind Dock

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

Halfway Up the Mesa

The hike to the village is steep. This is looking into the valley from the halfway point.

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.

North Face

Looking at the side of 4B from the roof of its car shed.

Water Tower

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

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.

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.

Old Ward

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

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.

Lift

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

Rows of Arches

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

Shop

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

Pimped Rides

Ruined cars abandoned in the generator hall, long after its namesake was scrapped.

Standing Strong

“Crunch, crunch, crunch,” said the ground. “I know,” I replied.

Powder Kegs

These aluminum powder kegs were forgotten in storage.

Old Tanks

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

Ogilvie Elevator Sign

On the outside of the steel silos and headhouse is a riveted bulge that does not look like the silos. Inside is this elevator, a rudimentary (read: dangerous) and old (read: dangerous) freight elevator.

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…

As Iron Clyde

From factory to skate park to restaurant. This is in the skate park stage. The buildings to the right are demolished now, and in their place are hockey rinks.

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.

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.

Building 402

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

Mill Door

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

Lockers

Lockers for the boiler room workers.

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

Design Library

More than half a century of plans rot in the shadows, seemingly useless.

Pitfall

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

Lost?

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

Hoists

The hoist room, before it was used for storage.

RP1 Shadows

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

Gate 5C

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

Buchannan Blues

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

Dock Light Shadows

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

Film: Stems

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

Detroit Algae

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

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.

Coffin Quarantine

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

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.

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.

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.

Archspace Window

A window for light and air pokes above the big arch in the hallway. Most of the interior ceilings were broad brick archways.

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.

Belt Thrower

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

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.

Dock 2 at Sunset

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

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.

Dead-End Bridge

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

Boiler Blowers

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

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.

Oberon, MB

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

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.

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.

Quenching Tower

Showering red-hot coke fresh from the furnaces near the Coal Tower (in the back) was the Quenching Tower’s duty (front).

Cafeteria Door

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

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.

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