abandoned penitentiary

Places where reality is a bit altered:

• any target
• churches in texas
• abandoned 7/11’s
• your bedroom at 5 am
• hospitals at midnight
• warehouses that smell like dust
• lighthouses with lights that don’t work anymore
• empty parking lots
• ponds and lakes in suburban neighborhoods
• rooftops in the early morning
• inside a dark cabinet

• playgrounds at night
• rest stops on highways
• deep in the mountains

• early in the morning wherever it’s just snowed
• trails by the highway just out of earshot of traffic
• schools during breaks
• those little beaches right next to ferry docks
• bowling alleys

• unfamiliar McDonalds’s on long road trips
• your friends living room once everybody but you is asleep
• laundromats at midnight

• galeries in art museums that are empty except for you
• the lighting section of home depot
• stairwells
• hospital waiting rooms
• airports from midnight to 7am
• bathrooms in small concert venues

• cemeteries
• abandoned penitentiaries
• hilltops at night in full moonlight
• most of Japan
• empty barns
• marshes
• really anywhere quiet at midnight, the air vibrates
• old stones and henge
• the ocean when it’s still quiet with fog over it
• train tracks that go through the middle of the woods
• bridges
• ancient places
• stands of old growth forest
• the Eastern Sierras/high desert

• rabbit paths off hiking tails
• trails between the main ski hills
• winter twilight
• back allies between houses
• logging roads
• dirt roads on fall evenings with leaves falling off the trees
• libraries before closing
• anyplace where it’s snowing before sunrise
• the woods during a rainstorm

• roads covered with snow with trees on the sideways while snowflakes are falling out of the sky
• train stations after 10 PM
• outside, right before a massive storm
• the woods just after twilight
• the beach in winter
• the bottom of swimming pools
• empty beaches when its snowing

• back part of a library
• late night empty streets
• highways late at night
• windy roads
• windy roads at night when you can only see the immediate road
• abandoned parking lots (office buildings, homes)
• anywhere immediately after a really bad fight
• little towns late at night when no ones awake and the only lights on are the street posts

• empty buses before sunrise/after sunset
• being the only one outside in the early morning when its almost dark and you feel alone on earth
• mountains with a big forest close to it
• being alone in a spot in ikea
• the lakeside anytime between 2 and 6 am
• firework shows when you’re sitting on the grass
• staring up at very tall buildings
• the tram at a big airport
• abandoned house by a lake

• being the only one downstairs on christmas  
• stepping outside in the early morning when it has just snowed
• when its dark and you see snowflakes falling down in the light of a lamppost on the lonely road
• that one clear spot in the forest with trees surrounding it
• a parked car in a snow/thunderstorm
• corn fields with the wind blowing over them
• malls when they’re about to close for the night
• woods at twilight/dawn
• being on a train after midnight
• theme parks at night

• winding back roads with rolling fog
• seeing “open” signs when its really foggy and cloudy
• being in a train that was crowded when you got in and now its quiet, looking at the seats knowing that there were people sitting there moments ago and now they’re gone
• hiking trails that have nobody on them
• being alone in an elevator for a few minutes
• looking down at the forest when you’re standing somewhere high and seeing the top of the trees with fog lingering over them
• the ferry about to take off in the middle of the night
• tree houses
• empty seats on the late night train
• 4-6 am on a winter morning

• the clouds/damp coming out of your mouth when its really cold in the morning
• stepping out on an unfamiliar metro/train stop
• greenhouses that have been left to grow alone
• cemeteries in the middle of fields
• biking/walking on the main road when its dark without cars
• swamps with fog
• hotel corridors in the middle of the night
• anywhere where you can hear a train whistle in the distance but you can’t see it or know just how far away it is
• foggy mornings in a meadow
• that flickering streetlight
• working offices at midnight

• abandoned amusement parks
• mirrors in an airplane bathroom
• being alone in a church
• empty hotel lobbies
• hearing trains off in the distance especially at night
• snow falling down in general
• being in a place thats supposed to have a lot of people but it doesn’t
• long, dark hallways
• the middle of a park when its snowing
• playgrounds at night
• work/school when you’re snowed in
• caves
• a field of power lines
• being in a forest where there are train tracks not knowing if the train may even ever approach
• bonfires

• being in a different room than everyone else at a party
• the woods on a night with a full moon
• empty stables
• empty metro stations that are usually crowded
• gas stations on long mountain roads
• the old part of a city when you’re the only one in the street
• stadiums when a game or concert is over
• entering a building with a really high ceiling
• moonlight, anywhere

• empty tennis or baseball courts with limited lightning
• times when you are transitioning from one phase to another
• lodges in the snow
• frozen water in the winter
• a little lake in the middle of the forest
• campus during summer
• family gatherings
• construction site after works have gone home
• leaving a tent at midnight
• lonely swings
• overgrown fields
• from twilight to dusk
• farmland thats covered in the morning fog
• suburban neighborhoods filled with tension and wind before a large summer thunderstorm
• being at an abandoned place knowing that years ago at that exact same moment there were people
• the feeling of being chased by someone/something
• knowing you’re not alone in a certain place like a forest

this feeling is scary as FUCK it dawns upon you that something is so quiet or abandoned or empty and vacant that its like the universe forgot to make something happen in the one spotlike you found a glitch in real life like everything seems fake and unreal and real and not fake all at one and youre so confused

flickr

Abandoned Prison Cell 

Eastern State Penitentiary, Philadelphia, PA

10

Now abandoned, the Brushy Mountain State Penitentiary near Petros, Tennessee, was first established in 1896.    The original wooden structure was built by the inmates, who also constructed a railroad spur for the prison, worked in the coal mines located there, ran the prison’s coke ovens, and worked at the prison’s farm.  

The current building shown here was built by the inmates to replace the original wooden structure in the 1920’s, using stone quarried there onsite.  It was commonly known as “the only three-walled prison” because the perimeter’s fourth wall was actually the tall, sheer stone cliff the other three walls were joined to. 

On June 17, 1977, James Earl Ray, who was confined here, along with six other prisoners, escaped from the unit by scaling its rear wall where it joins the cliff’s face.   The location of that escape is shown here, in the eighth photo.   At that time, the bushes and other overgrowth in the corner and along the cliff were not there.  The close proximity of their escape to the guard’s tower shows how desperate the seven men were to regain their freedom.   Unbeknown to them, though, was that even if they were able to overcome the prison’s cells, guards, and walls, the terrain surrounding the prison was extremely steep and mountainous, rendering it virtually impassable.   Ray was recaptured in less than two days, after being unable to travel even three miles from his cell.     

Brushy Mountain was the only unionized prison in Tennessee and the guards went on strike in 1972, complaining of unsafe working conditions.    As a result of the strike, the prison was closed until 1976.   After being reopened, it became the area’s intake location for the system, where inmates were classified before being sent to other units.   It housed a few over 500 inmates, including those who were confined within the newly added 96-bed maximum security annex located inside the prison’s walls, where the State’s most dangerous inmates were held.  

The Brushy Mountain Penitentiary was closed on June 17, 2009; but its life is not drawing to an end.    Preparations and construction are already underway for the prison’s next place in history.  Once completed, it will house a distillery where moonshine, whiskey, and bottled water are produced, a museum, a restaurant, a gift shop, and there will be tours of the old prison.  This is going to be an incredible attraction to the area!  

Meanwhile, the property is closed to the public.