Gallery Update: Monday February 4, 2019

Essex County Isolation Hospital

A small gallery update including a handful of pictures taken from a rooftop adventure years ago atop the shuttered Essex County Isolation Hospital. At the time of this exploration I had no idea that it would be my last, thus I only managed to capture pictures of the view from on top of the roof. Sneaking into the old isolation hospital used to take a bit of skill, as half the building was still being used by a cancer research facility and so a large portion of the building could not easily be explored, if at all. However, after the cancer research center unexpectedly closed, the building was left 100% vacant. Unsecured and unwatched, it became relatively easy to find a busted window or blasted open door to just waltz in through. But with the ease of access and close-by, on street parking, also came the deluge of local kids and multifarious riff-raff exhibiting various degrees of idiocracy. The large imposing main brick building rising up like a skyscraper became quite the illicit attraction. As the popularity and allure surrounding this modern ruin increased so to did the negative press and police patrols. Eventually it became too difficult to risk dashing across the expansive front lawn just to explore a relatively unimpressive building, sans its mere size. However, I do have very fond memories of hanging out on the roof top watching the summer sun set and attempting to boat the massive flooded steam tunnels within a plastic turtle sandbox. Today the building is in the process of being restored into residential space; although a quick trolling of the Instagram proves that children are still sneaking in.




Update: Tuesday December 4, 2018

Embassy Theatre

About forty-five minutes north west of New York City, situated within the small yet densely populated village of Port Chester, New York, although more closely representing a Connecticut town due to its bordering proximity to the Constitution State, the Embassy Theatre currently rots. Its construction can be traced back all the way to 1926, the theaters opening year. With a seating capacity of just one more body over 1,590 the interior of the auditorium was certainly no small space. The large centerpiece chandelier within the theater still remains adorned with its numerous lightbulbs and electric fixtures, however it now appears to be hung from a mess of cobwebs which strangle and completely obscure the massive support chain connected the the high valued ceiling above. The Embassy Theatre was originally constructed for the showing of vaudeville, but with the passing of decades and the changing of the times the space evolved to become that of a movie theater and finally a dance club in 1986. That same year the theater was shuttered for good and has remained vacant ever since. Time has taken its toll on the old theater for the decorative plaster has begun to crack and wither away as the red stage drapes absorb the surrounding decay. The 1,591 seats within the theater have long been removed creating a dark cavernous space, alive with the sounds of echoes of anyone who dares enter the forbidden troupe.




Update: Sunday September 23, 2018

Marlboro Psychiatric Hospital

Situated upon a 594 acre plot of rural land within Marlboro Township, New Jersey, Marlboro Psychiatric Hospital opened its doors for "care" in 1931 as a classic Tudor designed, cottage plan institution. However, I use the word "care" loosely for within years of the hospital opening it quickly became overcrowded with patients and with such overpopulation the condition of the hospital as well as the quality of help the patients received quickly deteriorated. Marlboro Psychiatric Hospital is perhaps best remembered for the 1993 investigation initiated by then State Senator Richard J. Codey concerning allegations of rampant greed, corruption, squandering of taxpayer money, and patient abuse crippling the institution. In classic New Jersey fashion all of these allegations were proven to be true and Marlboro was ultimately shuttered in 1998 at which point it remained abandoned for nearly twenty years to follow with demolition of the ruinous buildings commencing in 2015. People often tend to focus on the stories of various suicides and murders that occurred during Marlboro's tenure as an operating hospital. While most of these descriptions hold truth and can be interesting, I think the real damming shame of Marlboro was the flagrant corruption that seemed to be embraced by all of the institution's employees. Corruption and greed seemed to be the underling theme at Marlboro, with everyone from janitors to highly paid doctors partaking in the extortion. Marlboro was a place where not only patients but money went to be wasted. Tax money being poured into the hospital was rarely used as intended and the patients suffered while others made financial gains from it. This type of self righteous, egotistical, greedy behavior is all to stereotypical of New Jersey State Government to this date. While the Marlboro wave of corruption was busted early on, the greed has not disappeared from government by any means, instead it has just moved on to infiltrate new opportunities. Pay on taxpayers, pay on.




Blog Update: Tuesday August 21, 2018

Fartin' Around The Wharton Water Tower

Within the infinite distance that is the horizon, a blinding radiant blob of fire and light straddles a narrow and ever quickly receding imaginary line just barely separating the pollution-orange tainted sky above, from the silhouetted land below. As if it is a living, thinking entity, the sun contemplates it's final minutes of fate whilst balancing upon the tightrope horizon, before ultimately falling and sinking behind the opaque mountains...

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Update: Wednesday June 13, 2018

Essex Generating Station

As the Passaic River flows around its last oxbow bend before converging with the Hackensack River and forming the mighty Newark Bay, a ravaged industrial elbow of land bordered by The Pulaski Skyway and The New Jersey Turnpike juts out like a throbbing thumb, shoved too far up ones ass. A lifeless peninsula of barren cement referred to by some as Point-No-Point. This toxic little chersonese, named after the nearby railroad swing bridge connecting Newark with Kearny NJ, remains as wasteland populated by electric substations and massive oil and gas tanks. However, a curious abandoned substation, a remnant from the once larger Essex Generating Station which was demolished many decades ago also remains rotting away situated along the northern tip of the impoverished land. Because The Passaic River is very much tidal at this point access to the substation comes and goes with the ebb and flow of the tides. A thicket of reeds and a battered barb wire fence separates the the old power plant from most humans. However if one times the tides right and wishes to slump through the oily muck, a playground awaits.




Update: Monday January 1, 2018

McMyler Coal Dumper

Rotting along a beat up wooden pier barely balancing upon the industrialized river bank of the Arthur Kill in Port Reading, New Jersey a decrepit monolithic structure battered for decades by salty sea swells and powerful gusty winds remains as a a hunk twisted steel and corroded metal rising tall against the unassuming Staten Island, New York skyline in the foreground. A thicket of reeds and nautical debris washed ashore from wicked storms past form a sort of natural fence barrier between the polluted river water and the clobbered McMyler Coal Dumper, making access difficult. Constructed in 1917, Big Mac, as the coal dumper became nicknamed by its crew of twelve, could unload a railcar full of coal in two and half minutes, sending the product onto barges to be shipped to coal burning power plants all across the north east; a massive industrial feat for its time. However as alternative power generating fuel sources became more popular the need for raw coal was diminished, thus Big Mac became more of a liken to Big Useless Mac and was ultimately shuttered in 1983 for good. The steel ruins of the coal dumper have been rotting and corroding away into the Arthur Kill River ever since. Even despite the historical significance of Big Mac's industrial unloading feats, little effort has been made to recognize the structure or brand it as a historical landmark. As a result, Big Mac will undoubtedly continue to rot away until the forces of nature collapse the remainder of the structure and the ever flowing yet fierce Arthur Kill River swallows Big Mac for good.




Blog Update: Sunday November 26, 2017

Images of America: Essex County Overbrook Hospital - A Book Response

I have a bit of an issue in my life in which buildings, well specifically those of which are currently void of humans, often resonate with and speak to me more than people. I will even go as far as admitting that certain buildings mean more to me than people and physical human connections at times. Now perhaps that's a bit of a fucked-up introvert fueled emotional thought process to admit too, yet it's completely true..

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Blog Update: Saturday August 12, 2017

Photostream Introduction

The process of editing photos, putting together a location gallery, writing a complementary short story, conjuring up some sarcastic photo captions, and hand coding then editing the HTML/CSS is a process that takes time. Yet for many, many years I had the process down to a ritual; the first of every month I made it a personal goal to have a new location posted up and I succeeded at that for quite some time. But over the past couple of years the stories I enjoy to write have become more complex and thus time consuming to imagine, prepare, and edit, which has led to updates on Vacant New Jersey to become far and few between...

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