Where pupils once filed in with their lunch pails for a day’s learning, there is now a relic that leaves no doubt, school’s out in Readlyn, Saskatchewan. This old school is thoroughly fenced however, and the grounds are in use by the property owner, so I wasn’t able to get any closer. …
As I was planning a trip to photograph Saskatchewan places in July, 2016, I didn’t have plans to stop here until I found out about the former Aneroid Consolidated School. Like so many rural communities on the Great Plains of North America, Aneroid is shrinking. Young people are now going to school in nearby Ponteix, and the former consolidated school is abandoned. …
In Plymouth County, about twenty miles north of Sioux City, stands Ruble, Iowa, a tiny dot on the map near Broken Kettle Creek.
Ruble was founded in 1900, and was never really more than a roadside pit stop, with the store serving weary travelers and regional residents under the leadership of H.C. Marbach. The small one-room country school served area students in the early days until a larger school was built on a different site. …
We visited Capa in July of 2015, near the end of a four day trip to explore some abandoned places in North Dakota, Montana, Wyoming, and South Dakota. So many times, when visiting vacant, out-of-the-way places on the high plains, we find a regular, criss-cross grid of gravel roads, intersecting every mile or two, and we can easily drive right up to our desired places, but that was not the case in Capa. …
There were once over two hundred people in Carlyle, Montana, but today it is a ghost town, just a green, largely treeless spot on the prairie, just inside the Montana/North Dakota border. We were on a trip that had included stops at Adelaide Country School in North Dakota and Devils Tower, too, when we decided to run over to Carlyle and see what we could see. The remains of the business district (visible in the background, behind the elevators) are secured on fenced and posted property, and are a shadow of the small town that once stood here. …
Miranda, South Dakota is in Faulk County, about forty miles southwest of Aberdeen. The scenery on the way to Miranda was awesome; like being adrift on a sea of prairie in places, with barely a power line or telephone pole to be seen. Miranda is an unincorporated community of about a half dozen inhabited residences, and upon arrival I was pleased to discover it had a number of vacant and abandoned places to shoot. …
After I visited Hillhead in 2014, it was pointed out to me that I missed the building that was once the school. So, when I was planning a trip to shoot some places around Aberdeen in June of 2015, I decided I would travel through Hillhead again on the way back home and see if I could get a shot of the school. …
Verdel, Nebraska is a tiny town in Knox County, in northeast Nebraska, with a population of 30 according to the 2010 Census.
It was founded in a different spot some miles away, but Verdel boomed in 1902 when the Chicago & North Western railroad reached this spot in the rolling green prairie carpet near the junction of the Niobrara and the Missouri.
Nanza (Ponca Fort), a fortified village built by the Ponca in 1700, is nearby.
This sewer opening was scary. Years of gutter runoff have widened the maw. A person could get swept right into this thing in a downpour if you lost your footing.
Shooting Verdel reminded us a little bit of another place… Kathryn, North Dakota.
We had only been in Verdel for a few minutes when a friendly lady stopped to see if we were looking for anything in particular. Terry told her we were just admiring some of the old buildings. She continued on to a home down the road and left us to our photos.
This church was the first thing we photographed when we arrived in Verdel. The only things as good as huge, majestic churches are these tiny little sanctuaries.
Like many midwestern towns, the Verdel area suffered through serious flooding in 2011.
These structures are all right along Highway 12, the main route through Verdel.
Verdel is just down the road from another very impressive near-ghost town, Monowi, Nebraska.
David R Morgan American Legion Post 223.
The old school waits on the hill.
Only the slab remains from some long gone structure.
Photos by Troy Larson and Terry Hinnenkamp, copyright Sonic Tremor Media LLC
This old township hall stands alone beside a gravel road in Lac Qui Parle County, just a few miles east of the border with South Dakota. I found it particularly beautiful, on top of a hill, with purple blooms in the prairie grasses.
Photos by Troy Larson, copyright Sonic Tremor Media LLC