ABANDONED AMERICA: DISMANTLING THE DREAM
If the creation of a structure represents the values and ideals of a time, so too does its subsequent abandonment and eventual destruction. In Abandoned America: Dismantling the Dream, internationally acclaimed photographer Matthew Christopher continues his tour of the quiet catastrophes dotting American cities, examining the losses and failures that led these ruins to become forsaken by communities that once embraced them.
Explore the magnificent remnants of the Victory Theatre in Massachusetts and the Variety Theatre in Cleveland as they fight for survival; the Catskill Game Farm in New York, the largest privately owned zoo in the United States, undone in part by a terrible secret; Long Beach, Connecticut - a beachfront community left for dead when the bridge to it burned; Taunton State Hospital in Massachusetts, a massive crumbling asylum with a dark past; the SS United States, a derelict ocean liner moored in Philadelphia that was the fastest passenger ship ever built; Vulture City in Arizona, a ghost town built around a gold mine that caused unimaginable bloodshed; Ohio's Randall Park Mall, a eerie relic of the days of the megamalls; Pittsburgh's Fort Pitt Casting Company, a steel foundry destroyed by escalating rivalries between management and labor; Schenley High School, once the most expensive public school ever built and closed over questionable safety concerns; Forest Haven, a haunting Maryland institution that gained a terrible reputation for killing its residents; the Lee Plaza Hotel in Detroit and the Fallside Inn in Niagara Falls, two hotels doomed by deteriorating economies in their surrounding communities; and Gary, Indiana, a city struggling to cope with 13,000 blighted properties left behind when the industries disappeared.
With a foreword by Don Wildman, host of the popular television series Mysteries at the Museum, and 150 full-color photographs of 14 remarkable abandoned locations with essays by Matthew Christopher chronicling these important and hard to access sites, Abandoned America: Dismantling the Dream forces us to confront who we were, who we are, and who we wish to become.