In 1940, 250 families in rural Indiana were told by the U.S. War Department to move out–something was coming. KOP was one of the largest ammunition factories through World War II, and a few buildings still stand today.
“It’s just across the parking lot,” the kids might say, “Let’s GO!” Into the dark/into the damp/into old Mather Mine.
During the Cold War, the Twin Cities were protected by a ring of defensive nuclear missile bases. By 1972, they had all been closed and their stories began to diverge.
This 1931 barge loader irked the City of St. Paul for decades–it literally sits over the Mississippi River, making it troublesome to demolish. It turns out that this concrete tower lasted just long enough to get redeveloped. See how, and learn the whole story.
The Temple Opera Block and NorShor Theatre were the center of social life in Duluth for a lifetime, before the Block was decapitated and the theatre was abandoned.
N.P.R.R. built a dock in 1912 to serve Cuyuna Range mines and compete with the Allouez docks. It was abandoned in 1970.
Known more for its afterlife of arson and anarchy, it insists to exist. It built cars between 1903 and 1958, only taking breaks to help America win its wars. Since then it has become an icon of America’s manufacturing decline.
People live on top of it now, ever since the Francis Hotel was turned into apartments. There’s a chunk of the building that nobody can get into though, and it has been that way for a while. St. Paul’s lost stage.
For Pillsbury to be abandoned in Minneapolis is like the Gateway Arch to be rusting from the inside out and passed by hundreds—unnoticing. This is Mill City, and this is the Mill of Mill City, and the people pass on, not even looking up to ask why these three square blocks on the river are the way they are.
Not like this, not anywhere, not anymore. This is a unique place–an old temple of metallurgy in the Upper Peninsula; “God’s Country,” everyone insisted. This is an abandoned monument to a god of fire, of copper, and for me, of time travel.
After 150 years of digging, brewing and burning, Schmidt Brewery still rules the West Side. Here is a story of new beginnings, starring a cave and a castle. It starts in Saint Paul, Minnesota, 1855…