This cast-iron spiral staircase is among my favorite finds in my years of traveling through the ruins. And this photograph, from my first trip to North Brother Island, is among my favorite photographs that I’ve taken. The quality of light was perfect, diffused through the partially-cloudy sky and coming in through a few holes in the boards over the windows. Walking into this room blew my mind. A few minutes after I took this photo, I took another photograph of the staircase with a completely different feel to it. And on my final trip to the island - almost as if a bookend to 15 trips out to Typhoid Mary’s hospital - my final shot of the day was another view of this staircase, tinted green by the spring foliage over the windows. Looking at the three photos (as well as dozens of others I took of this rusting hulk over the years), it blows my mind how much a little change in lighting or framing can affect the way the staircase appears - from ominous to inviting.