Midwest abandoned tour

Immediately after photographing this abandoned Tennessee farm house, I left for my Labor Day weekend trip to Indiana. I visited an old friend and photography mentor who lived in the Tri-State area where Indiana, Kentucky, and Ohio all come together. Not far from Cincinnati. It’s always inspiring to visit with him as we’re both artistic and spiritually minded. Chris is also inspired by abandoned buildings for similar reasons as I am. So, let’s call this the Midwest abandoned tour.

roadside motel

This roadside motel sign is symbolic of what Americana really is. Let’s just think of the charm of small independent business and forget about musty smell and bedbugs for a moment. The road offers a certain freedom, but it can also be a long and lonely experience, depending on your thought pattern at the moment. Speaking of Americana, it doesn’t get any more apple pie American than this abandoned gas station. Right across the Ohio line.

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I always love looking for clues and fixtures to see who worked there and what the place was about. Also to think of the stories those crumbling walls could tell. Chris and I both had a similar sense of when we exhausted the possibilities of each location and when to go on to the next one. For me, the key is studying and looking, and taking a few photos. But make them count. Why is it so many Satanists find their way to these places? Hmmm.

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These solid steel doors were no joke.

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Next stop was this charming farm house, it was actually for sale. I hope someone fixes it up, but they’d have their work cut out for them. Yup, we got in.

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Next stop on this Midwest abandoned tour, back in Indiana, this abandoned stone house. Brilliant architecture, but I bet it’s been 40-50 years since inhabited.

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Ironic. There was a landslide that took out the road to this house that Chris remembered was there. We drove all over to find the way in on the other side, and here it was. This was rather strange. Some beautiful older features in the house mixed with some 70’s and 80’s  remodeling that went horribly wrong.

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Yes, gravel roads! Even a creek crossing but I thought this tunnel was a bit eerie. Chris said last time he traveled through, he saw hanging doll heads from the trees, but we didn’t see them this time. That would have required documentation. The Hills Have Eyes I suppose.

abandoned house

Last but not least, back in Ohio, this abandoned house on a hill. We were greeted by a concerned neighbor. The house was apparently for sale and her son was interested. She seemed a bit baffled that anyone would want to take photos of an abandoned house. She seemed sad about it’s current state because she lived in it before. I encouraged her to Google this site, but got what I needed quickly and bailed before she discovered the nude and boudoir work, lol. I guess this is a random heating gas or oil tank sitting in the woods, but still cool.

junk abandoned house

Perhaps my favorite photo of the Midwest abandoned tour.

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Despite some concave flooring, I’d have no qualms walking the stairs. I remember my mom and grandmother telling me that the stair makers in these old houses were among the highest paid and most respected craftsmen. I have yet to find a weak staircase in an abandoned house from the old days, so it must be true.

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An out building covered in growth. I hope these photos inspire you as much as these and the experience did for me.

abandoned house


Abandoned Tennessee farm house

A friend who lives about 45 minutes West of town told me about this abandoned Tennessee farm house a bit further out from where he is and offered to take me there. Well, life happened, we both got busy, but one day I had the urge to explore. He wasn’t available, but he directed me there. I was on my way out of town to visit an old friend and photography mentor up Cincinnati way and wanted to kick off my trip with some new inspiration.

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I always check out buildings like garages or barns to see what goodies are strewn about the floor and for old chemicals on the shelves. It gives me an idea who lived there and a bit of a story on the place. I had actually gone a bit out of my way to get here, and was in the next county by the time I realized my navigational error. But this place was worth it. I just enjoyed a slice of Americana and kept my eyes peeled.

Abandoned house

Typically, I prefer Winter for photographing the outside of abandoned houses because of the overgrowth. But you can still get an idea what this abandoned Tennessee farm house looks like. The dead limbs and lack of vegetation only enhance the decay and distress of the structure. But I prefer the photos I get inside the house anyway.

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I prefer to have my friend Jerry with me when checking out a new abandoned building for the first time for obvious reasons. No matter how seasoned I am with photographing these forgotten gems, anything can catch me off guard. Like inhabitants or falling through the floor, thankfully which neither I had to deal with. This is why I don’t recommend photographing abandoned structures without knowing the ropes. And even then it can be a hazard. One I’m willing to face. This was one of those spontaneous things, and I was there, no turning back! Going all in!

Abandoned house

As usual with these old houses, the staircase was solid as a rock. The floor, not as much.

Abandoned house

Speaking of floor, the couch fell through it. I’m willing to bet no one was there, but it still made a sound. New York times newspaper from 1980 anyone? It wouldn’t surprise me if this house had been abandoned for nearly that long.

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Dinner is served in the kitchen…maybe 30-40 years ago, LOL!

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The shattered glass sliding door and back lighting provided an interesting contrast and texture.

Abandoned Tennessee farm house

The office manager preferred working outside I guess. I hope you’ve enjoyed photos from this amazing abandoned Tennessee farm house! I would normally arrange a subject but this place was just too unsafe. I risked it, but I can’t do that with someone else. It was eerie but so rewarding.

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