Death By A Thousand Cuts

Discussion in 'Landscape & Cityscape' started by smoke665, Nov 30, 2018.

  1. smoke665

    smoke665 TPF Supporters Supporting Member

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    Had a few minutes today on the trip home to swing through Cairo, IL. Rain, fog, and a long trip still to go, prevented me from exploring the town as much as I would have liked, or getting some of the shots I hoped. As the crow flies, Cairo is only about 50 miles from where I grew up, but a galaxy away from the life I knew. Despite it's reputation for murder and mayhem, in college we would make beer runs to Cairo on our weekend boating adventures. Especially on Sunday as they didn't care what day it was nor how old you where, if you had the money.

    Incorporated in 1858 Cairo's location at the confluence of the Ohio and Mississippi should have guaranteed it thriving for centuries. Unfortunately everything from water seepage, to changing transportation, to racial divide eventually brought the once thriving city to a virtual ghost town. Not sure that any one single thing did it, more a case of a thousand things over the years. For those interested in reading more google it, there's a lot of history.

    Cairo was a city of contrast from the extremely rich along Millionaires Row, to the poorest of poor.
    Magnolia Manor was the jewel of the city, and a favorite haunt of Ulysses Grant.

    [​IMG]Cairo IL20181130_0148.jpg by William Raber, on Flickr

    Riverlore Mansion is on the market I hear. For only $250k you can buy this priceless artifact in an otherwise deserted area.

    [​IMG]Cairo IL20181130_0151.jpg by William Raber, on Flickr

    A couple blocks away are the remains of the Southern Medical Center. It closed in the mid 80's. Clean up crews later found everything from asbestos to medical waste, chemicals, and patient records scattered about.

    [​IMG]Cairo IL20181130_0152.jpg by William Raber, on Flickr

    I was shocked to find that most of the crumbiling abandoned buildings in the downtown had been leveled. It resembled a war zone of broken crumbling, buildings, and streets when I was there last.

    [​IMG]Cairo IL20181130_0155.jpg by William Raber, on Flickr

    Only a few remained. Surprisingly the once cracked and potholed streets with grass and weeds growing had been replaced with brick.

    [​IMG]Cairo IL20181130_0157.jpg by William Raber, on Flickr

    The Gem Theater opened in 1910 and was quite ornate for a sleepy little town. It stayed idle crumbling with the surrounding buildings until 1996 when restoration was started. Unfortunately the money ran out and restoration was put on hold in 2000. So it sits crumbling.

    [​IMG]Cairo IL20181130_0160.jpg by William Raber, on Flickr

    Thankfully there are no buildings left for Station 1 to protect.

    [​IMG]Cairo IL20181130_0174.jpg by William Raber, on Flickr

    I have no clue why or what this started as, but it ended it's life as a funeral home. Fitting I guess.

    [​IMG]Cairo IL20181130_0171.jpg by William Raber, on Flickr


     
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  2. baturn

    baturn TPF Supporters Supporting Member

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    Great set! B+W is the way to go for nostalgia.
     
  3. smoke665

    smoke665 TPF Supporters Supporting Member

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    Thank you. I really wish I'd had more time and better weather.
     
  4. stapo49

    stapo49 No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Great images and fascinating story. Thanks.
     
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  5. otherprof

    otherprof TPF Supporters Supporting Member

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    Very interesting post!
     
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  6. Jeff15

    Jeff15 TPF junkie!

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    Very nice set.....
     
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  7. Sil

    Sil TPF Supporters Supporting Member

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    i m agree ...fashinating... i love this place !!!
     
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  8. Fujidave

    Fujidave Blue eyed and Beautiful Supporting Member

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    Great set smoke, and all work bang on in mono too.
     
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  9. D7K

    D7K No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Nice info, great shots well edited really suit the story..
     
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  10. Dean_Gretsch

    Dean_Gretsch Always looking... Supporting Member

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    Really captivating thread. Wish you'd had more time, because I didn't want it to end. Great job on the pics and narrative too!
     
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  11. smoke665

    smoke665 TPF Supporters Supporting Member

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    @D7K @Fujidave @Dean_Gretsch @Jeff15 @otherprof and @stapo49 thanks for looking and commenting. If you ever have the oppotunity, it's an interesting place to visit (In the daytime). I only scratched the surface of the opportunities for photography. It would take a day to really explore.
     
  12. tirediron

    tirediron Watch the Birdy! Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Very cool set - I would love to explore a place like that.
     

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