Archive for the ‘Abandoned’ Category

Abandoned farm in Phillipsburg

An explorer friend of mine messages me and says “Hey I found this great big farm! I didn’t have time to check it out because it was almost dark. Wanna go with me?” How could I resist? So I met up with him Friday and checked it out. It appears to have been abandoned for maybe 8-10 years or so. The place was pretty well cleaned out. We didn’t find the usual leavings, like mail and garbage and clothing. We found a few toys here and there, a little bit of junk amongst the weeds and bushes but very little else. There was no evidence of kids or squatters either. No beer cans, bottles or drug use. No graffiti. I like to find stuff left behind, sometimes you can learn a bit about the people or the place. Not here, but it was nice to not see a place ruined by vandals either.

It looked like your typical farm. there definitely were animals raised here, and there was a fairly large corn field that was fallow. Interestingly the corn was still growing in neat rows. Apparently the birds eats the corn cobs as they fall but enough kernels remain to seed new plants. The buildings are in rough shape but nothing that couldn’t be salvaged. The buildings were probably built in the 50’s. There was a garage/shed type building, one large main barn with some smaller wings built off to the side, as well as the two actual houses. The houses had a very weird layout, I suspect it was expanded at some point. Its the only way to explain the layout.

I’m surprised it is still here and that its pretty untouched. Its in what I would say a prime retail location and is easily visible from the road…..

All the photos are here or go to the Facebook group

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Williams Grove Amusement Park

Williams Grove Amusement Park is located in Mechanicsburg, PA, right down the road from the Williams Grove Speedway and the Williams Grove Steam Engine Association. The Williams family began hosting picnics here in 1850, eventually becoming the Mechanicsburg Fairgrounds. The first rides were built in 1928 and the Speedway opened in 1938.

The biggest change came in 1972 when the park was purchased for 1.2M and many rides were imported from the defunct Palisades Amusement Park which closed that year (the year after I was born!) The park continued entertaining locals thru the 80s when a steel roller coaster was built, and received various face lifts and changes in rides as many parks do. By 2005 attendance was dropping and the owners decided to invest in the speedway instead. The park closed in 2005 and there have been various attempts to sell the property since then with no luck. All the rides except the Cyclone roller coaster were sold off. The Cyclone was built in 1933 and was considered ground breaking for its day with a 60 foot drop and top speeds of 45 MPH. Now the coaster is overgrown with vegetations, and is in a state of decay. The grounds are still maintained and in good condition though most of the buildings are not in very good shape are 10 years of non-use.

See all my pictures here

Here is Roadside Americas page about Williams Grove

HolyLand USA (Waterbury, CT)

HolyLand USA was a biblical theme park in Waterbury, CT. Built in the 50s it features numerous… what i can only describe as large scale dioramas, depicting various famous events in the Bible. The park sits on 18 acres on a hill that overlooks Waterbury, and its main focal point is a 58 foot cross, replaced in 2008 with a steel cross 50 ft tall. The park has been closed for 30 years and the passage of time has not been kind to the exhibits. In fact they look better than one would think after 3 decades of weather and no upkeep. The property is owned by the mayor and is still … i wouldn’t say maintained, but they try to keep the brush cut back and theres recent memorial bricks in the newly constructed cross base. For more details read about it at the link above on wikipedia. All my pictures are here

Abandoned barn in Warren County

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Abandoned in the middle of Route 46

For a decade I’ve driven past this abandoned house that sits in the middle between the east and west bound sides of Route 46 in Warren County. I have always wondering who would build a home in the median between the sides of a busy highway. I don’t know how long it has been abandoned, I noticed it around 2001 on a trip to the Delaware Water Gap. Every time I would drive out that way I would either forget or it would be too late in the day and too dark or there would be police there. it seems the local PD likes to hang out there in the grass and either do speed traps or just chit chat with each other. it turns out there is nothing special about it. just another abandoned structure, ignored every day by thousands of drivers who probably never give it a second thought.

My experience exploring North Brother Island

If you know nothing about NBI, here is my original entry detailing the long and varied history of this unassuming island in the Bronx River. it’s well worth a read and I won’t repeat it here because this is about my own journey exploring the island. I don’t recall exactly where I first heard about it, but I had known about it for well over a year. I had researched it thoroughly, making particular note of the dangerous currents and tides. I was also keenly aware that it was very close to Riker’s Island, which presented a security issue. I certainly did not want to be mistaken for someone escaping the infamous prison. What became clear was that if one was going to go to the island it would have to be by canoe, so one could scuttle the boat on shore. After numerous aborted discussions i finally found someone w/a canoe and someone else crazy enough to make the trip. We made the trip in January 2006. It would be approximately 1,000 feet from shore to shore and I am woefully out of shape, I cant remember the last time I was in a canoe. Complicating things is the fact that the tides are vicious and the water was ice cold. There had been a nasty ice storm the night before so air temperatures were sub-freezing. I can’t imagine what the water temperature would be like. Even with a life jacket, hypothermia could easily set in before I could reach shore. If you haven’t figured it out, this journey probably ranks as the most unintelligent exploration I have ever taken.

As fate would have it, I made the trip over successfully. The island is home to numerous birds which nest there and it’s a a protected bird sanctuary. The hospital buildings are all in severe disrepair. Many stairs are crumbling and there are holes in many walls and floors. This has allowed many thaw cycles to do further damage to the facility as snow and ice have gotten inside and rotted away the wood that held it together. There are 3 main buildings as you can see in the aerial picture below from google. There was almost nothing left in any of the buildings except for rusted out desk and chairs. The one area that was most interesting was the kitchen which still had purchase orders for the patients. In here I also found a 1950 phone book. I found it amazing to see phone listings as KL5-3325. Unfortunately the pages crumbled in my hands so I could not take it home as a souvenir. We spent several hours carefully poking around, but our visit was cut short because we wanted to go back when the tides were just right. Below are several pictures, but you should really check out all the pics on flicker

a giant auto graveyard in central jersey

I came across this location thru a friend. he was kind enough to tell me the location on condition I not reveal it. So I won’t. So don’t ask. This place is unlike any place I have ever seen. it has all manner of vehicles including RV’s, ancient pickup trucks, jeeps, numerous types of trucks, construction equipment, fire trucks, flatbed trailers, bulldozers, even asphalt paving machines. There are easily 60-70 vehicles here in a variety of states of decay.

Then there is the debris, refuse and construction material. It really is a junkyard, a dumping ground. i did some research into the place and it appears to be an old farm that was later bought by a large corporation for reasons unknown. I am researching ownership further to try and determine the history of the place.

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all the pictures on flickr

Sandy wipes out the LBI wreck

The LBI wreck was a small house of some sort that greeted people as they crossed onto LBI via the Route 72 bridge. I don’t really know anything about it, seems like no one does. Just an old abandoned shack. Sadly this fixture is no longer around, washed away, destroyed by the winds and storm surge of Sandy.These are photos of the LBI wreck before it was washed away.

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Boonton Park exploring

In a park in Boonton there are some nice hiking trails, as well as some abandoned stone structures set into a hill and an old rail line.

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Sussex County Farm

One of many abandoned farms in Sussex County. Located on a main road it was an easy find.

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