It's probably been years since I've posted here... but this week I'm home sick with a horrible cough and thought maybe I'd share some photos with communities that still seemed to be semi-active. Over the last year I've had a great time exploring a lot of small towns in my surrounding area. I thought you might like to see pictures from some of my adventures. I can break it up into chunks by town.. in fact.. I think I will. So if you like this I'll post a lot more!
The Masonic Temple in Fairmont, WV stands tall but abandoned.
Fairmont is a bit of a rundown town. The county seat of Marion County, it has had quite a bit of population loss since it's heyday in the 1950s. It has a lot of (still very lovely) abandoned buildings, but a lot of local color and fun stuff to discover. Unfortunately, more buildings are demolished seemingly weekly... cultural resources are many, but not particularly well managed. It is by no means dead, though. I like to go there. I don't want this post to give a negative portrayal of Fairmont. It's got its troubles... but if you like the semi-quirky or under-appreciated.. well, it's your kind of town. Fairmont is home to some important state employers, but alas none of them really help the downtown area, which is what I will be featuring here.
Butcher School, an abandoned school in Fairmont.. it's been empty at least 25 years, unfortunately. Last time I was here, a little over a year ago, it was boarded up tight, but this time it was wide open. A kid on a bike yelled at me while I was taking this picture and told me he was callin' the cops. Thanks, kid.
Last time I was here, kids were still playing on what's left of the playground. I found some historical pictures of this place but they are copyrighted so I can't post them or link to them, but if you check the online photo archives belonging to certain West Virginia libraries, they're easy to find. You can't tell in the photo, but it is a pretty big building. I didn't go in, but just by peeking in the many open doors, I can tell you that it's fairly trashed and stinky.
Fairmont's beautiful art-deco movie house (check out the peach vitrolite!) has been out of business for a few years. I never saw a movie here, so I hope it reopens so I can. :P I love theatres... it's the first thing I look for when I visit a town.
Now there's something you don't see every day... this was on the side of a comic book store near Butcher School.
Fairmont's old art-deco post office is empty... but for rent!
The BOE building, a former hospital.
I am told that despite the appearance of this Moose Lodge it is NOT abandoned.. and is still available for parties and banquets.. though I'm not sure why you'd want to have a party in a building with boarded up windows. Mafia parties? :)
I think a moose ran over the sign.
I love this sign. I saw an identical one in PA.
Abandoned near Moose Lodge.
Abandoned near Moose Lodge.
I think this curvy building used to be a tire store.
I love this building. There's a shop on the bottom floor but I'm not sure if the upper floors are occupied or not.
Lupo's is closed, but not out of business. He just moved somewhere else.
This one didn't make it. :(
I love this old-school motel.. still in business!
After a busy day of running around old buildings, I recommend The Poky Dot Diner for a milkshake or sundae.
I hope to take some more shots of Fairmont soon. There's a lot of it I haven't yet explored. A lot of nice old houses there, too.. though many great Victorian-era mansions have been lost to McDonald'sization.
The rest of my Fairmont set is HERE.
Thanks, if you liked it, I have lots more sets of lots more towns!