Every fitting label in the stock department was cracked, curled, and blank.
A big door into the fire pump room.
I like the fading stencil paint.
The elevator works on gravity… this is where a conveyor belt was to move the grain toward the main elevator to be loaded into ships.
A taste of Superior culture.
The offices for the Five Roses elevator have long been boarded. To the left you can see the Manitoba Pool Elevator slogan, “Service at Cost”, meaning they would not make profit off farmers and dues.
The bottom of the elevator in the new foundry.
Bricks from the demolished buildings.
The sign that greets visitors to the ghost town of Colmor. Nothing says ‘welcome’ like birdshot.
The end of the new elevator. Line of bird droppings follow the fire sprinkler pipes and wires in the room.
A splash of pink across an otherwise boring sign caught my eye in the old elevator.
I love the ghost sign across these two elevators, originally built as Superior Elevator. It’s looking pretty rough.
Silverton’s elevator, pictured here, is still active.
The last time the city sealed this door, they must have been changing out old road signs.
Lit by the glow of St. Paul’s West Seventh bars, highlighted by the cool blue of the sleepy section of South Side. This castle-like tower can be seen for miles around town; a Landmark at the brewery that brewed a brew by the that name.
A look at another “Belt-o-Vator”. I like the sign.
One of the large barracks. All of them are overgrown like this.
“But everyone I used to know was either dead or in prison
So I came back to Minneapolis this time I think I’m gonna stay” -Tom Waits
The old gate sign, leaned against one of the terminal elevators.
Fire doors and penis talk.
A switchboard to control the flow of electricity into the plant from the city and generators.
Below the pressure gauges are rows of little pipe fitting drawers.
The sign room with glass letters, words, and numbers.
Every elevator has sets of these conveyor switches. Grain comes down through the top chute and the bottom chute rotates to move the flow onto various belts around the plant by gravity. The cross belt is another switch and the bridge belt brings the flow to the other half of the elevator.
A century-old ghost sign for Royal House Flour was preserved after a building is built above and through it! Looking from the north annex elevator toward the headhouse.
The main stage and the retired (and in this instance, scrambled) marquee that will be repaired and reinstalled above Superior Street. A former manager of the building I used to photograph Nopeming with told me that the letters for the Art Deco tower are stored somewhere in the NorShor to this day, but I did not see them (and frankly, I doubt it).
Elevator B, used by a local farmer, stands behind an old farm truck at the edge of town.
Part of the unremodeled hospital, above the Service Building, where employees would stay sometimes.
Kodak Tri-X 400, Leica M7. Serious enough to write across the side of the tank, but not serious enough to have a sign made.
Van Dyke Cab Company and Yellow Cab served the terminal in lieu of a streetcar loop downtown, which was planned but never built.
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.
A warning sticker on the interior of a dredge once tied to the old dock.
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.
Miners at the turn of the century had better taste in typography than the average person does today.
An Old Crow warehouse, formerly federally controlled, near Old Taylor Distillery.
Before each warhead was crated, it was inspected.
From Main Street, looking straight up at the A Mill, only the silence makes one think that nobody’s still inside, grinding grain into Pillsbury’s Best.
The back of the mill reads “Red River Milling Company”
A chalkboard halfway to the headhouse is untouched since the mill closed. It still has the cheat sheets!
The rear of engine bay 13… according to the heavily faded sign.
Winter skies over Allouez Bay. From a distance, it looks almost fragile.
General Mills bought Consolidated Elevator’s “D” in 1943 and renamed it “A,” though no additional elevators have followed from that firm to date. Visible on the right is the first annex, built along with the elevator in 1909.
Footprints of houses past; tailings of mines past.
In case one forgot… mounted behind the appropriate valves. Who hasn’t memorized the appropriate valve positions?
The view from the larry, looking out at the overgrowing coke oven top. Papers listed the order of the charges for each oven, noting the sticky doors and persistent leaks. Emergency respirators and rescue gear was stored close, as long exposure to emissions from the rusty hatches could make worker pass out on the top of the ovens.
Inside the Beulah elevator were all of the original notices and notices. These are instructions for filling rail cars with flour sacks.
Looking out of the American diesel crane at the gantry crane that ran the length of the dock.
A long exposure under the trestle-like approach to the dock, under which trains still pass regularly.
I love the texture of the rust through the decaying yellow paint.
When it became “Hyde Park Hospital”, this portico was added onto the front.
Standing between pockets 1 and 2. You brought hearing protection, right?
In the Lime House, the sunset picked-up the last light of day to make this image. Lime is used in the beet sugar refinement process to reduce the acidity of the beet juice mixture.
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!
Note the tiled floor between the bucket conveyors and an old mill.
I assume this sign used to sit near the highway that snakes around the mine and town.
A few of the stalls in the older section of the roundhouse, the noon sky peeking in.
One of my favorite signs, informing workers about to descend into the open-top grain bins about basic procedures. This was in ADM-Annex 1 (connected to the cleaning house via skyway), so it will never be seen again, unless the sign lands luckily when the elevator is demolished.
Some sort of materials handling building, judging by the construction.
A sign on the corner of a laboratory remembers.
This sign was important when trains ran the length of the elevator.
This elevator was built in 1922 and was used until the passing rails were removed in the mid-1970s.
Allouez had already suffered one major fire. It didn’t need another–especially under Dock 1’s wooden approach.
The front of the Art Deco hospital, complete with Art Deco gears and Crosses of Loraine!
The front of the mill reads “Montana Flour Mills Company”
Part of a vintage neon sign. I hope it’s been preserved–it reminds me of the sign that hung over my grandfather’s tv sales and repair shop in small town Minnesota.
The pockmarked concrete sign of Substation #2 over the control room that faces the highway.
The UP gets a lot of snow, making exploring its old mines a special challenge in the winter. The snow is more than 6 feet deep in this picture, and firm enough to walk on.
Dominion was acquired by UGG, which designated the elevator ‘M’. Their offices still have safety signage.
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.
A big sign marks where the elevated walkway is severed where Dock 2 used to meet Dock 3, now gone.
A caustic tank in one of the unremodeled brewhouse backrooms.
Parking strictly forbidden. A sign in front of Cheratte’s former truck shops.
The Sivertson’s sign seems like from a different time. I’ve never seen it lit, but I bet it’s beautiful.
It’s a straight view from the projection booth to the stage, but hell of a walk. At a fast pace, I think it would take 10 minutes to walk from this spot to the chair. Behind the curtains is a big white screen, so the theatre could be used for either stagework or moving pictures. The two projectors are set up for 3D movies right now–hence the little switch below the window–a Polaroid 3D synchronizer. Cool, huh?
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.
The original metal sign over the porticos.
Frontier Gas is a former (?) gas station chain. Chain O’ mines reused a scrapped sign to mark their mill. Under the paint you can barely make out: GLORY HOLE GOLD MILL.
The shaft house, where hydraulic steel doors allowed or denied entry into the mine shaft. Overhead is a light and alarm. If it sounds, the mine is being evacuated, and you best not go in and best stay the hell out of the way. Locals dump tires here, now.
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.
Canal Park (see bridge) and some of old downtown, formerly Duluth City Hall and Police Department (center-left). At least one star has appeared in the sky…
The batch tag specifies some of the technical properties of the silk worked here.
I couldn’t help but include this ghost sign for a demolished motel…
The mine was built with stone, wood, and steel. It’s in good condition.
Standing on a caustic tank with my head out a roof hatch, I look at the sign of the last brand to be produced here.
A bumper sticker with the usual tagline. Note the detail on the radiator!
Looking up the hill from the rooftop of the Temple Opera Block. The downtown casino (left) looks far closer to its original use as a Sears Roebuck department store than it does today. Behind it is the blighted Carter Hotel, one of many abandoned buildings near the former Orpheum.
From the street, it’s clear that almost every window and door had boards over it, but not every building had a roof. Silly priorities.
In case power was lost, this manual signal could direct trains on and off the taconite trestle. Turning the pole would change the color of the light on top and the shape of the metal flags.
Looking from the powerhouse across to the old Electrical Assembly side of the plant that manufactured products like thermostats. Most of the complex is connected by skyway and tunnel systems.
A little catwalk gives access to the most important gauges in the building. Behind them are huge vents and fans. I bet it got steamy in here.
An abandoned gatehouse bearing the name of the former factory.
When the ship loaders were added, a doorway was cut through the metal silo to make a room for the grain handling equipment. Note the dust sensor in the corner of the torch-cut archway.
For some time, tugboats were stored next to the elevator.
A squat building with a rail scale. Taken between rain showers in late summer, when I seemed to be the only one at White Pine.
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.
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.
In the women’s restroom.
The historic entrance of the mill, alongside the (relatively) new Great Western offices.
The tallest dock structure is an equipment elevator that connects the many dock levels.
In the corner of most of the factory floors, freight elevators flanked restrooms to leave more central space for machines and their masters.
Global Trading remarked the building in the mid-60s, but far above the door is the old ‘Detroit Shipbuilding’ paint, though it’s faint nowadays.
The headquarters for the plant was in the middle of it. It’s abandoned but well preserved–a strange sight in Gary, Indiana.
One of the former sanitorium common rooms. Its interior is at the end of one of the wards and is lined with glass brick.
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.
Unloading boats had the option to take on fuel at Taconite Harbor. This building, among other things, pumped fuel to the dock.
The side of the maintenance shops, still home to several disassembled electric carts.
Fire doors separate the buildings.
Zachary Taylor’s very own Scottish castle, spring-side in the Kentucky backcountry. Boarded and waiting, but in surprisingly good condition, considering the decades. I especially love the tower on the right side of the frame.
The Osborn Block (front) and the Twohy (rear) at sunset. In the distance, you can almost make out Globe Elevators. One of my favorite photos of 2013.
Heavy wood doors for keeping people in.
This corner of the building was the coal room, used to feed the two big boilers inside. The steam equipment has been replaced with electric, so this section may not have changed much in the past decades.
Point me to the blast furnace.
The chalkboard in the filtering plant reminds new visitors of the last day.
Wintertime is quiet, except for the planes overhead.
The Dock 5 sign at track level. Probably as an aid to sailors reboarding their vessels.
Inside the main entrance to the depot. Through the ‘To Station’ door, you can see some of the news stands. Look at the floor!
To make sure the tourists aren’t scared off, the city painted the side of the elevator with one of its historic names.
Note that the back of Stockhouse #4 is missing. A year later, Fermentation was on the ground too.
The Brown Hotel still stands, but has recently gone out of business again. One of the nice things about historic buildings in New Mexico, though, is things tend to stay around a lot longer than if they were subjected to lots of rain and snow. It will probably be reopened eventually.
Devan setting up his 4×5 camera.
The tunnels were full of bricked-up doorways. I wonder how many rooms under there are totally sealed from the outside world…
“This way,” then, “No, that way!”
Every timber pillar was numbered for maintenance purposes.
The laundry building, where many of the tunnels came to an end. It looks very East Coast industrial to me.
In the steam plant, steam pipes bundled in canvas and asbestos criss-cross the walls.
Workers in the basement tunnels had to communicate with the workhouse operators 100 feet above and vice versa. Alarms and bells were installed to signal trouble over the sound of the elevator machinery.
The house across from the Harris offices were decorated in a unique way.
The Western Elevator’s old moniker looks over Fort William (the neighborhood). Snow falls over Mount McKay in the background. This elevator is still active… the only active elevator in Fort William proper.
A 8-foot-tall volume indicator that could be read from across the beet boiler floor–convenient when the controls are 20 feet away.
One thing I like about the oppressive globalist-wrought future is the idea of numerically subdividing spaces; my geek side sort of wants to live in a flat that can be sorted by as Dewey Decimal-like code.
Laundry chute to the basement, as seen on the top floor.
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.
The corner of the original buildings still carry the Lemp logo!
ZC was sure proud of his castle!
Model: Devan. Instagram: sextmachine
Ruster at The Pool… employee graffiti about 100 above ground.
Looking up at the most conspicuous graffiti in the city on ADM #4.
Below Dock 2 is a set of fire pumps.
The stage of the theatre still holds hymnals and other vestiges of its time as a church.
HDR matrix panorama. Looking from the grain elevators, now doomed, toward the city between the flour mill’s water tower and tile elevator’s neon sign, the old and new economies seem almost united. Yet the financial centers rise in reality to shadow the now-abandoned industry and manufacturing. The way of things, I’m told.
An exit from the concourse.
I wish I had the equipment then that I have now… I look back at these 10-year-old pictures and can’t ignore all the grain.
I get dirty.
A firedoor dating to the original car barn is roped off, anticipating demolition.
Vents in the boards over the windows helps prevent mold and animals from getting too crazy inside.
Because painted signs would not hold up in this spot–in between four ovens that were literally hot enough to melt steel inside. Solution: Cut the pipe labels into the sheet metal. Seems to have worked.
Kurth bears a ghost sign. Recently, its main sign was destroyed by graffiti artists in 2015.
In the nitrating house.
A passing cloud almost looks like a puff of smoke from the trimmed smokestack of Consolidated D. In the lower corner you can see a little Stonehenge that someone with a sense of humor and heavy equipment built.
A sunset shot of the Western Cable Railroad depot in the middle of the Lemp brewery complex, with the malting house in the background. Western used to have an exclusive shipping contract with Lemp.
If you’re an Astra-Zenica representative and want to use this for some magazine ad, I’ll charge you a reasonable $10,000. Email me (ha)!
This machine was last overhauled in February 1955, and last turned out Crepe silk, probably dress material.
An old sign directed patients and visitors back to toward the central parts of the hospital.
Serve [unknown] Build… What do you think the middle says? Tell me in the comments.
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 had no identity issues. My chief regret was not spending more time documenting the ghost signs around the complex.
I revisited the mill years after my documentary. Now it is even more destroyed and surrounded by new fences.
It remains unexplained what ‘serious results’ may stem from not reporting an accident, but when labor was cheap and unorganized I doubt anyone asked.
Shadows of the trees from the materials yard.
Shot on a Pentax 67 in monochrome and toned to match the set. For some time the marquee was lit at night to advertise the fact that the city bought it and planned to apply for credits to repair it.
A different kind of tree fort.
This is one of my favorite images of the year because of the color, light and textures. Someone told me once that the medium of photographers is not film or digital sensors, but rather shadows. This photo is evidence of that.
Carter Color used to occupy this block.
Some warnings on the older battery which was visibly older than its eastern counterpart. This set of batteries had no railing between the side of the ovens and a long drop onto railroad tracks… I like this picture because it shows the effects of the heat and corrosive gasses on the area around the ovens.
My favorite time to be in the brewery was sunrise. That’s the kind of light that made the brewhouse glow.
A decaying door of the Medical Director for the unit. Because this is from one of the outbuildings and not Administration, I doubt that this was the Medical Director of Norwich State Hospital’s office.
For some time, Purina ran a feed service out of the elevator. Inside and outside were signs of its past presence.
Looking out at the town water tower (which I love) from the sugar mill (which I also love).
Looking toward Fort William (Western) Elevator from the top of Superior Elevator. Fort William is bordered on the south and east by this wide, winding railyard. Note the pretty and quaint brick offices of the Western.
Much of the mill is wooden–even the larger chutes.
Looking out upon Mill City through the lens of FLOUR, highlighted in pink and low clouds. This sign has recently been converted into LED lighting.
Funny how sensitive modern English speakers have become to gendered language. I doubt the workers here–almost all female–were offended by this posting for ‘Workmen’s Compensation’.
Unit 4’s lower levels.
S&X seen in the background through the fog.
These buildings were largely used as concentrators for the crushed rock, although I did spy some small mills inside these too.
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.
I found a historical photo of this room showing 10-foot high machines with wires hanging by the mile from looms and schematic charts.
A bridge crosses the main street of the village; one that goes nowhere. Ambiguity intended.
I’ll remember the neon glow fondly.
The north side of the plant is modern 60s industrial architecture, meaning massive open spaces with no personality. This mirror is the most interesting thing I could find.
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.
The historical entrance.
One of Martinsdale’s defunct businesses perpendicular to the depot. Recall that Martinsdale is a T-town.
Barrels were prepared across the street, then moved across the road with a special conveyor, seen crashed here. This is down the road from Old Taylor, and was probably a part of the Old Crow operation.
The most derelict of the old bonded warehouses. Note the barrel elevator on the side of it!
Spare parts ready for this building’s reactivation.
All of the fire alarms had been triggered.
I wish I knew what has become of this great one-of-a-kind sign that used to brag how many days the Clyde Iron factory has gone without a serious accident. Update: It’s hanging in one of the smaller venue spaces behind the bar.
Kansas is known for tornados. Think ‘Wizard of Oz’. That, considered with the fact that the workers were surrounded by bombs and bomb making materials called for lots of earthen shelters, just in case.
The coal extractor swings back and forth, ripping coal from the ground and throwing it on a conveyor belt to be burned a few miles away.
“Ballistite is a smokeless propellant made from two high explosives, nitrocellulose and nitroglycerine. It was developed and patented by Alfred Nobel in the late 19th century.” -Wikipedia.
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.
The largest extant structure when I visited.
The neon lighthouse, seen from the top of one of the silos.
Ladders crawl the back of the signs. Graffiti writers’ right of passage.
Somewhere between the grain elevator and the distillery.
Only two machines sit on the rails in the roundhouse, both oil cars. It’s not clear whether there’s anything inside either, but they have to have been placed here before 1970, when the turntable outside these numbered doors was removed.