Thursday, March 18, 2010

Old Industrial Elgin

We did some more exploratory biking yesterday. Matt wanted to check out the northside of town, where we found this rusted old complex. After some sleuthing, Matt identified it as an old cotton gin. See the metal tubes from which they sprayed the cotton into the waiting train cars below?

There's cotton waste sticking to everything in the compound--like the chain link fence below.

The clincher, evidence-wise, was this row of old tanks, neatly and helpfully labeled "COTTONSEED OIL." It's odd the way it seems to have shut down all of a sudden--ladders still leaning against tanks, hoses dangling, floor mats left drying by the door.

Across the way is this interestingly desolate operation, which actually appears to still be in business. The sign out front said "Nitrogen," and the scummy green puddles pullulating with algae seemed to confirm it. I suppose farmers come here for fertilizer?

I really liked this tank, every inch of which appears to be covered in varicolored rust. It makes me kind of nervous, mind you, (perhaps, for holding dangerous chemicals, a rust-proof metal might have been preferable?) but the colors are neat.

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