Dear Parents

Early reports indicate enrollment has increased, however we are experiencing some problems: student tardiness and failure of students to complete assignments… [paraphrased letter to parents c. 1992] #Detroit

Firestone Tire and Rubber Co of Canada

The original portion of the Firestone building was built in 1919 by the Burdick Rubber Company, Firestone Tire and Rubber Co of Canada bought it in 1936 and gradually expanded the complex. At one point of over 50 products were manufactured at the site including fan belts, radiator hoses, military tank treads, a wringer mechanism for washing machines and employed over 1700 people.

In 1988 the parent company in Akron, OH was sold to Bridgestone Tire in Tokyo and the plant closed.

Security informed us that the ghosts of former employees wandered the flooded basements, so it was not only dangerous but too spooky to photograph.

I had forgotten about the in-camera, double exposures from my Minolta Autocord until I was looking for something else recently.

There are few more shots inside some of the buildings on my Flickr page.

rotational-view-the-beast-firestonerotational visions of the beast

firestone-double-exposure-magic-ceilingmagical light

The Ruins of Blaine Shul, Detroit MI

The Mishkan Yisroel Synagogue or Blaine Shul as it was known because of its address on Blaine St, moved to this site in 1925. After the Jewish community migrated North of 8 Mile  in the 1950’s the building was sold to African-American baptist church group and was home to the New Mt. Moriah Baptist Church and God’s Inspirational Kingdom Church until 2003.

The building, like all that is abandoned in Detroit is in an advanced state of decay and the balcony and basement are inaccessible. I always wondered if anyone was ever around when the roof/stairs/floor etc. collapsed and while doing some reading about Blaine Shul I came across a photographer who was present when the staircase they had just taken to the balcony collapsed. YIKES!