December 31st, 2009

the road is the sky
  • modlin

beautiful desolation

The Salton Sea must be a classic in this community. Here's a little more of it.

Winter is the time to go to the desert. About two hours east of LA is the Salton Sea, a large inland salt lake around 200 feet below sea level. It was a popular resort years and years ago, but now all that is slowly decaying, left for the birds and the few remaining residents.



Burned palms.


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Three-West State Homeopathic Hospital



The doors of Three-West (Alias) were opened to the public on April 20, 1874.
Hailed as the first homeopathic asylum in the world... a fact that was later proven to be false.
It was the first asylum in the United States however, to operate under homeopathic management.

Now, I know some people might be about to open Dictionary.com,
I'll save you the trouble...

ho·me·op·a·thy (hō'mē-ŏp'ə-thē)
n. pl. ho·me·op·a·thies
A system for treating disease based on the administration of minute doses of a drug
that in massive amounts produces symptoms in healthy individuals similar to those of the disease itself.

Three-West was erected upon a 250 acre parcel of farmland.
200 acres of land, plus fifty acres of forest.
Upon it's opening in 1874, and going against the original plans,
it was decided that the facility will treat women as well as men.
Sixty-nine patients were treated at Three-West during it's first year of operation.
By the year 1902, the asylum had a population of over 1,200.
By 1909 several other structures were built, and the patient population grew to 2,250

October 8, 1921.
One in the morning.
Fire starts in the attic of the main building.
A night watchman was alerted by the sound of an automatic sprinkler, and came to discover the roof to be ablaze.
The building was lost, but luckily not one person was harmed.
The patients had all been taught how to properly exit the facility in case of fire, and they all preformed exactly as intended.

The origin of the fire remains a mystery.
There was no known wiring in the attic, and no visitors had been on that floor during the previous day.
Upon the spot where the main building once stood, a new "fireproof" one was erected.
The new building was occupied in 1927.

1924 marked 50 years of work for Three-West.
During that span, 12,957 patients had been admitted.
3,949 were discharged as "recovered.
249 were reported as "improved"
1,559 shown "no improvement"
and 3,546 died.

Three-West continued to sprawl itself out across it's acreage throughout the years.
Currently it remains an operating facility, though it is solely based out of the newer buildings that scatter the campus.
What was once the beautiful and grand executive building was partially demolished,
the remaining wing was left as a ward for the more violent persons of Three-West.

As time went by, this too ceased to be of use, and was left vacant...
To be more specific, condemned by the state.
It remains to this day, rotting, sitting in amongst the newer and more plain buildings that it helped spawn.
A throw-back to the old world of medicine.
An echo of the land.

The building itself is in exceedingly poor shape and is very dangerous in places.
In some areas of the structure several floors have collapsed onto each other, finally finding rest in the basement.

The only inhabitants that remain to call this place a home are the countless pigeons that occupy the third floor of the facility.
Their coos can be heard throughout the entire structure...




(Full-size, and additional historical images are at the end of this post)





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  • Current Mood
    amused amused
Hoyt/Jessica bute

(no subject)

So this is my first post here, partially sharing about this place, partially to ask advice. There is place near where that used to be called the Binghamton Inebriate Asylum. Its construction began in 1858, was converted to an insane asylum in 1879, closed in 1993 after part of the building collapsed. It was listed as a National Historic Landmark in 1997 and in 1999 it was listed as one of NY states most endangered buildings. Its located on the property of the new psychiatric hospital, so security and such is very vigilant and they chase people off even just taking pictures of the outside. I am new to all of this, but my question is how does one go about getting permission to photograph a property if you need to? I would love to get inside and take photos, but as I mentioned, security keeps a close eye on the place and its fenced off pretty well.

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