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Looking down the Indiana Harbor Canal at the former steel mill of Inland Steel. ArcelorMittal is operating it now. This area in Northern Indiana, southeast of Chicago, was home to four or five steel mills in a row along the shore of Lake Michigan, including the Indiana Harbor Works of LTV Steel, US Steel's Gary Works, and the Burns Harbor plant of Bethlehem Steel.(Image courtesy of Samuel Love)


Rolling Mills of the former Inland Steel Company in East Chicago, Indiana. (Image courtesy of Samuel Love)


A view of Gary, IN with the U.S. Steel Gary Works in the background. U.S. Steel basically created the city of Gary in 1906. Evidently Gary was prosperous in the mid 20th Century, but is now an impoverished and economically depressed area. The Internet is littered with "ruin porn" pictures people have taken in Gary, much like they do in Detroit. (Imageo courtesy of Strawberrylizzie)


Carl contributed this picture of an ore carrier leaving the USS Gary works. He writes, "I have attached a photo of the Benjamin Fairless, steam ship-ore carrier. It had a sister ship,the Sloan. The Benjamin Fairless was scrapped in the 70's or 80's. The Sloan was still afloat in 2002. Both were built in the 1940's. My father worked on both ships." (Image courtesy of Carl Helsing)


Here's a very sad picture - after 85 years of production General Motors' manual transmission plant in Muncie, IN was closed in 2006. That's why the parking lot was empty when I took this photo a few months after the closure. (Jul. 2006 image by author)


Pigeons fly over the closed G.M. transmission factory in Muncie, which made "rock crusher" transmissions for some of the renowned muscle cars of the 1960s. This factory has since been demolished. (Jul. 2006 image by author)


This part of the plant probably dates back to the days when it was operated by Warner Gear. (Jul. 2006 image by author)


Know where your bread is buttered - a sign on the front parking lot at the idled G.M. transmission factory in Muncie. (Jul. 2006 image by author)


Workers' housing around the transmission plant probably dates back to its opening in the early 1920's. (Jul. 2006 image by author)


Two trains rumble through Muncie, Indiana on a summer Sunday afternoon. (Jul. 2006 image by author)


Another gear box factory in Muncie, this one was owned by Borg-Warner and dates back to 1928. (Jul. 2006 image by author)


Though the historic nature of the Borg-Warner plant is visable in this 2006 photo, one would assume that the plant had been modernized with current technology. Despite this, the plant was closed in April 2009. (Jul. 2006 image by author)

In 2000 Borg-Warner received 3.3 million dollars in tax abatement from Munice. In return Borg-Warner officials pledged to create 250 new jobs. But in September 2006 Muncie City Council members voted 6-3 to strip Borg-Warner of approximately $150,000 in property tax abatement. Council said they were doing this because Borg-Warner did not create the promised jobs. Then, in December 2006, the UAW union refused to reopen contract negotiations two years early (the contract was not supposed to expire until 2009). In February 2007 Borg-Warner announced that the plant would close in 2009. After the plant was closed production was moved to Mexico. A union worker was quoted as saying, “I’m most worried about my son. In three years he’s going to be in college. If the plant stayed open, I would be able to pay for it. That’s what I worry about the most. He’s first. And I worry about the economy in Muncie because we’re the last big manufacturer here, and it’s going to devastate our community. There are a lot of workers who are not as blessed as I am. They just have the one income. People out here are really stressed. A lot are not handling it well."


More detail of the back of the Borg-Warner gear factory at Muncie. A reported 780 people were thrown out of work when the old plant was idled. At one time approximately 6,000 workers, most represented by UAW Local 287, were employed at this facility. It has been estimated (by the Indianapolis Business Journel) that Indiana has lost over 20,000 automotive manufacturing jobs since 1999. (Jul. 2006 image by author)


Often the midwestern factories have an elevated water tank to provide more "head" for the water pressure they need in the manufacturing process. This one is at the Muncie Borg-Warner plant. (Jul. 2006 image by author)


The Guide Corporation factory in Anderson, IN was a manufacturer of automotive lighting, and a former division of General Motors. (The orignal name of the company was The Guide Motor Lamp Company). (Jul. 2006 imag by author)


Another part of the Anderson Guide Corp. plant. The plant was still active on this sunny summer morning in 2006, but was shut down for good in January 2007, and its equipment was auctioned off in March 2007. This was the last GM-related factory in a city that was once home to many GM factories, but now has been left to fend for itself. (Jul. 2006 image by author)


Storage tanks at the Guide plant in Anderson. This entire facilty has since been torn down. Today there is a grassy field where the Guide plant once stood. (Jul. 2006 image by author)


The lifeblood of Anderson, IN has been the auto industry. Evidently, the town was really booming in the 1950s and '60s because that's when much of the architecture in the town looks like it was constructed or remodled. However, most of the plants, like the one pictured here, have closed. (Jul. 2006 image by author)


Cleaning up rubble where, just a year before, stood a Delphi (formerly AC Delco) generator factory. There is one more Dephi plant in Anderson, but it is scheduled to close as well. UAW pensions may keep the town afloat for a little while. The Anderson Herald Bulletin read, "The recent announcement of Delphi’s pending closure in Anderson, set for June, means that all remnants of General Motors will be gone from a city that was once a proud standard bearer of GM ... Some people probably refuse to accept the fact that mass auto production on a GM scale is gone for good from Anderson, but it is." (Jul. 2006 image by author)


However, Delphi was still operating this plant in nearby Kokomo, IN when I snapped this photo. This section of the parking lot is mostly empty due to downsizing. Around 2006-2008 Delphi was really falling on hard times, and descended into bankruptcy. They closed many of their American plants and offshored much production. But G.M. took this plant back during their 2008-2010 restructuring. Now it is called G.M. Components Holdings. So it's great that this facility is still operational. But it doesn't employ the amount of Kokomo workers that its ancestor, Delco, did. (Jul. 2006 image by author)


This is the older, but still operational, Chrysler transmission foundry in Kokomo. The famous Torque-Flight transmission was once manufactured here. (Jul. 2006 image by author)


Storage tanks behind Chrysler's Kokomo transmission foundry. KCP stands for Kokomo Casting Plant. (Nov. 2015 image by author)


The Eagles Club across the street from the Chrysler transmission plant gives blue collar employees a place to relax after their shift is over. (Jul. 2006 image by author)


Chrysler has also constructed these two newer transmission factories in Kokomo. Like the Southern Ohio portion of the Rust Belt, most of the people in Eastern Indiana are White Anglo-Saxon Protestant, and many are very religious. (Jul. 2006 image by author)


The Chrysler Indiana Transmission Plant was closed on this day because it was Thanksgiving. (Nov. 2015 image by author)


Kokomo Spring Co.operated in Kokomo, Indiana for approximately 100 years. News articles indicate that Kokomo Spring closed this plant in 2010, but the buildings still look well maintained. (Nov. 2012 image by author)


These structures in Kokomo were once part of the factory that built Haynes-Apperson automobiles. (Nov. 2012 image by author)


Another view of the derilict former Haynes-Apperson plant. Later the company was renamed the Haynes Automobile Company, which went out of business in 1926. (Nov. 2012 image by author)


Ruin Porn in Kokomo, Indiana. (Nov. 2012 image by author)


This General Motors stamping plant in Marion, Indiana has been here since 1955 (it was called Fisher Body back then). When I photographed it in November 2008 General Motors was in negotiations with Congress to help them avoid financial insolvency. That week an editorial in the local Chronicle-Tribune newspaper read, "In our community, the Marion plant has an estimated $75 million payroll and provides about 1/15th of the county’s tax base. It is an economic engine that might have reduced its size over the years but continues to provide a pillar for our quality of life, including the quality of our city schools. We live in a place where the pain of the end of GM would arrive with the impact of a sledgehammer...we realize that people at the top of the Big Three are likely to remain financially secure no matter what Congress decides. They are not the ones needing rescue. We are." (Nov. 2008 image by author)


GM Marion plant as viewed from a field beside the factory. This is now known as the G.M. Marion Metals Center. (Nov. 2008 image by author)


The Plymouth Club down the street from the GM plant in Marion. (Nov. 2008 image by author)


Near the GM plant in Marion, IN lies this driveshaft factory of the once-mighty Dana Corporation. A few months before I took this photo of the plant the Indiana Economic Digest reported, "Several heavy-duty machines have recently been removed from Dana Holding Corp.'s Marion facility as the company shifts some production processes to Mexico. Eventually, the movement of that work out of Marion will result in between 130 and 180 fewer jobs at the local facility, he said." Workers at the plant are represented by United Steelworkers Local 7113. (Nov. 2008 image by author)


Behind the Dana Marion plant. In 2011 Dana announced that this plant would be closing by 2013, with some production moving to their plant in Fort Wayne. (Nov. 2008 image by author)


This corner of a factory building is all that remains of Chrysler's New Castle, Indiana factory. Built in 1907 as part of the old Maxwell Motor Company, it was part of the original six factories of the Chrysler Corporation in 1925. The high school in New Castle was even named New Castle Chrysler High School, though "Chrysler" has since been removed from the name. This is probably because Chrysler ditched the factory in 2002. A more modern parts factory operated by Metaldyne can be seen in the background of this photo, but the historic sections of the Chrysler factory have been demolished, save this wall. (Even the UAW Local 371 hall was converted to a pet grooming shop.) A plaque on the factory remnant reads, "For more than four generations workers produced vehicles and parts for Maxwell, Chrysler, Daimler-Chrylser, and Metaldyne, as well as making major contributions to our country's efforts in World Wars I and II. When razed in 2004 it was the oldest continuously operated automotive factory in the world..." (Nov. 2008 image by author)

When I photographed this scene the Metaldyne auto parts plant in the background was operational. Since then Metaldyne closed down that New Castle plant. (Nov. 2008 image by author)


Former factory of Crosley automobiles in Richmond, IN. Crosley was a compact car with an engine made of sheet metal rather than cast iron or cast aluminum. Auto production of this plant lasted from 1939 until the mid 1940s, but Crosleys were made in a Marion, IN plant until 1952, when Crosley automobile production ended for good. (Nov. 2009 image by author)


This large building in Richmond, Indiana is a relic from the Industrial Revolution. It was the factory of the American Seeding Machine Co. until 1920, when it became the Internation Harvester Richmond Unit. I.H. production here ceased in 1957. (Nov. 2009 image by author)


Detail of fire esape on the former International Harvester plant in Richmond. (Nov. 2009 image by author)


Lafayette, Indiana. Well, there's a lot more to the town than this, but this did catch my eye. (Nov. 2015 image by author)

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