Checkout: An Abandoned Places Visual Story

abandoned places

Written by Jennifer Colin

November 4, 2020

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Abandoned Places

My obsession with the abandoned began over a decade ago with a visit to the former Traverse City State Hospital—also known as the Northern Michigan Asylum. (I have captured countless images over my many visits there, some of which I will eventually share.) From the moment I first stepped onto that site, I felt an odd mixture of sadness, peace, curiosity, and wonder. These emotions seem to land every time I explore a place that is frozen in time. My hope is that, in some small way, the photos I take will preserve and honor the people, events, and memories that dwelled there over the years. If this concept also fascinates you, I invite you to check out my entries and journey alongside me.

Abandoned Places: Checkout

I discovered this defunct IGA grocery store while researching for our trip to Michigan’s Upper Peninsula this past summer. While some people look for tourist attractions, I seek out places long forgotten. Although the door was locked, there was an accessible pantry under the store, as well as broken windows in the home of the presumed former owner, also on the property. It was fairly easy to see inside the store, merchandise still on the shelves. I was in awe that it was free of graffiti and vandalism. Any others who had come before me had afforded the same respect to this scene that almost seemed like the set of a movie. I could picture the aisles bustling with people and the cashier ringing up neighbors while they shared the latest gossip. If you’re really quiet, maybe you can still hear them whispering.

Take a Load Off

Take a Load Off

Light's Out

Light’s Out

Bottle Return

Bottle Return

Clean Up on Aisle 1

Clean Up on Aisle One

A Sliver of History

A Sliver of History

Bottoms up!

Bottoms Up!

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