Posts Tagged ‘ derelict ’

North Brother Island- ceramics

Sometimes artifacts are left in buildings, sometimes they’re found scattered on the grounds, and in the case of islands, rummaging through the sediment and buildup at low tide can reveal treasures. North Brother Island has unfortunately been heavily scrapped, and very little in the way of artifacts actually remains.

Which is why it was amazing to discover that the facility, known as Riverside Hospital, actually had branded dishware. Two broken pieces of a plate, stamped “Riverside” with laurel leaves and a DH, which I can only assume stands for Department of Health. The back of the plate was inscribed with a very faint “Greenwood China, Trenton NJ” which, after a bit of research, turned out to be from the pottery company Messrs. Stephens, Tanis & Co. established in 1861. The particular mark on the plate was first used in 1886. While it seems difficult to further narrow down the date this plate was created beyond the stamp, knowing Riverside Hospital was founded in the 1850s as a smallpox hospital makes me wonder if these plate remnants really are well over 100 years old, and existed before the General Slocum crash on the island’s shores.

Either way, a fascinating find, giving a little more insight into the daily life of the quarantine patients in the early years of the hospital.

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The Tent of Tomorrow

Living in New York City, I’ve been fascinated by the remnants of the 1964 World’s Fair in Flushing Meadows Corona Park, Queens. While the Unisphere is obviously the main attraction, I’d always been more interested in the decaying New York State Pavilion, which I only recently learned was also called the Tent of Tomorrow. The entire retro, yet futuristic feel of the World’s Fairs have always appealed to me.  As one friend so aptly put it, they were filled with a naive optimism, in a time where countries were racing to be the first into space, and where structures almost looked more like a mix between 1930s art deco mixed with some vague science fiction ideas of what the future may be. In fact I’ve found reference to the style of the structure being Futurist.

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Mouldering State Hospital

Originally built to be a prison, this sprawling campus was repurposed after community complaints into a state hospital. Operating from 1924 until the mid 90’s, It is currently being demolished.

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Abandoned Lighthouse

I recently took a several week exploring expedition to the Southern Hemisphere, and enjoyed a lot of night shooting, particularly with the mass of clustered stars only visible far south. I’ll be updating more regularly now that I’m back.

Built in 1973, this lighthouse has been inactive since 1992

Auditoriums

A selection of various auditoriums, chapels and other general congregation spaces I’ve shot over the years. Most are contained within larger institutions; I’m not including free-standing theatres.

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Asylum Life- Salons

Most asylums and state institutions (and sanatoriums) were fitted with beauty parlors for the patients, helping create a healing environment and giving the patients some freedom in their appearance, despite clothing very often being supplied by the hospital itself. Finding hairdryer and barber chairs in hospitals is fairly common, and I’ve always smiled at finding these varied relics. It’s a breath of fresh air to be reminded of the humanism in a lot of these locations, so often bogged down by the more sensational stories of abuse. Most asylums were self sufficient, with carpentry and sewing rooms, teaching basic skills alongside reducing the cost on maintaining these publically funded institutions, so it would make sense that they would also provide salons

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Taunton State Hospital

I have enough photos from Taunton, a now-demolished Kirkbride hospital in Massachusetts that I could likely post a photo a day for months and still have more to go, but for now I’ll put a few up. I’ve rarely been so inspired by the colors, patterns and light in a place. Staying overnight to be able to get up before dawn and shoot is always an amazing experience. I really miss this location, though I’m sure there will be more Taunton-centric posts to come. Built in 1854, it was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1994 and was demolished in 2010.

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