Photo Essay

URBEX: Abandoned and Burned Out Orphanage

Orphanage Story 1

Back in college, I had begun to study photography a bit more seriously. As a visual arts student at the University of Connecticut, I was seeking new and interesting things to photograph when I came across this place. It looked like old tobacco barns at first sight, but, once closer you could see that the long wooden structures were something else. As I got closer and eventually walked into them, I saw that this was indeed an orphanage at one time.

As with many abandoned places, much had been left behind to rot away. Books, papers, dolls, all kinds of personal effects had been left by the children and the wards. At some point the place had caught fire and sections of it were charred with the remains of more personal items strewn about. Overall though, it was an odd quiet that lay upon the buildings and the things left behind. One almost felt at times that someone would just wander in to pick up that doll or the odd book as they wanted it just then.

I wandered the buildings for a while, including a house that was attached to the property. It seemed that much of the place had been built originally around the 30's, but this is only a supposition due to the architecture and the feel of the place. I have no idea just how long it had been abandoned, but, in its weighted, stilted, and rotten state, it had an odd grace that I still love when I seek out abandoned places.

I left the place with several rolls of film shot and went to process them at school.. Years went by, I don't know how many, but eventually the main building was destroyed and now a strip mall sits upon the land. However, if you go out back, you can see the remains of the other buildings..

Just skeletons on and in the ground... But I have saved these images as a historical record.


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