INAAP: Indiana Army Ammunition Plant
Charlestown, IN

INAAP Compared

INAAP Compared to GOW, SFAAP & KOP

INAAP was my fourth ammo plant at the time, following Gopher Ordnance Works (GOW) of Minnesota, Sunflower Army Ammunition Plant (SFAAP) of Kansas, and Kingsbury Ordnance Plant (KOP), also of Indiana.

Gopher Ordnance

INAAP was complete ran at capacity for most of its life–a real workhorse for the Army–whereas Gopher only had potential. V-E day passed before the Minnesotan plant was finished, so I’m unsure whether to even compare it to the rest of the complexes here. It was disassembled before it was fully activated.

What is of interest, perhaps, is that both GOW and INAAP were designed and built by DuPont, so many of the buildings in Rosemount, MN and Charleston, IN are identical, though the northern counterparts are in far worse states. Walking through the GOW power plant areas is like seeing INAAP under construction–or demolotion.

More on Gopher Ordnance Works here.

Sunflower Army Ammunition

INAAP, though huge, is slightly smaller than Sunflower, but only by about one hundred acres. Why, then, don’t I call Sunflower the largest abandonment in North America? Because almost all of the production buildings at the Kansas works were burned or bulldozed between 1995 and 2005. Shortly afterwards much of the plant property was sold-off. Most of this factory is farmland again.

More on Sunflower Army Ammunition Plant here.

Kingsbury Ordnance

I was able to visit KOP just a few weeks after INAAP, and I assumed that there would be a myriad of similarities. The two works were in the same region, built around the same time, and had similar production goals. I was very wrong.

Kingsbury’s state is somewhere between GOW and SFAAP; it has perhaps a quarter of its original building count–maybe a hundred structures of any description remain–but it’s short by more than a thousand. KOP trumps the half-finished ruin that is GOW, but it hardly speaks to the scope of its southern Indianan brother. The design is also very different from INAAP, using fiberglass roofs and metal walls in many buildings versus brick—no wonder it’s in relatively poor shape.

More on Kingsbury Ordnance Works here.

References »

  • Army building: new du pont plant in indiana will make 600,000 lb. of powder a day. (1941, January 20).LIFE Magazine, 10(3), Retrieved from http://books.google.com/books?id=8kgEAAAAMBAJ
  • Gray, R.D. (1994). http://books.google.com/books?id=slkbsubql-ac [p.355]. (Google Books), Retrieved from http://books.google.com/books?id=SlKbSuBQL-AC
  • Historic American Engineering Record. (1985).Indiana army ammunition plant Library of Congress. Retrieved from http://www.loc.gov/pictures/item/IN0288/
  • Kleber, J.E. (2001). The encyclopedia of louisville[Illustrated ed.]. (Google Books), Retrieved from http://books.google.com/books?id=pXbYITw4ZesC