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Chris Crawford I am pleased to announced a long time member has agreed to help and mentor others in photographic technique. As he has long done so, perhaps this forum is a bit overdue. Christopher Crawford has been a professional artist and photographer for 20 years, most of that time spent documenting life in northern Indiana with his photographs and the stories that he writes to accompany them. In addition, Chris also creates tutorials where he teaches photography techniques, film processing, digital editing, film scanning, and printing. Ask Chris your technical questions, or to critique your photos. You can see more of his tutorials at http://crawfordphotoschool.com

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Old 07-10-2018   #2241
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This is a women's restroom in Building 26 at the former General Electric factory on Broadway in Fort Wayne, Indiana. Interestingly, it is in very nice condition. All the other restrooms I saw in the factory buildings had floors covered in paint chips that had peeled off the walls.
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Old 07-10-2018   #2242
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The broom, and the tiny area of floor that has been swept around it, just seems like "Too Little, Too Late." It is leaning against the wall in Building 19 at the former General Electric factory complex on Broadway in Fort Wayne, Indiana.

As in most of the buildings here, the floors in Building 19 were covered in a thick layer of broken paint chips and dust.
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Old 07-10-2018   #2243
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Chris--what was manufactured there? Love the photos...
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Old 07-10-2018   #2244
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Chris--what was manufactured there? Love the photos...
Paul



Several different things. There were nearly 30 buildings and 25,000 workers there at the plant's peak during World War II. Electric motors were the main thing produced there, but they also manufactured equipment for the electric power industry, like transformers.
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Old 07-11-2018   #2245
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This is one of the men's restrooms on the fourth floor of Building 19 at the former General Electric factory in Fort Wayne, Indiana.

You can see me reflected in the mirror!
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Old 07-11-2018   #2246
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This ancient cast-iron sink is in a restroom in one of the buildings at the former General Electric factory complex in Fort Wayne, Indiana.
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Old 07-12-2018   #2247
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I made this photograph of an abandoned barn back in May on a beautiful foggy morning in rural Allen County, Indiana.
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Old 07-13-2018   #2248
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This little American flag was standing on the steps in the spectator seating around the basketball court in the GE Club building at the former General Electric factory in Fort Wayne, Indiana.
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Old 07-14-2018   #2249
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These lockers are in the bowling alley at the GE Club at the former General Electric factory complex in Fort Wayne, Indiana. Several of the lockers still had bowling balls, shoes, and other items that people left behind when the facility closed.

The GE Club, built in 1927, featured a gymnasium with a basketball court on the top floor and a bowling alley in the basement for the use of GE employees.

GE closed the last of their operations in Fort Wayne at the beginning of 2015. The former factory complex is being redeveloped into a housing and retail center to be called "Electric Works."
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Old 07-15-2018   #2250
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I found this graffiti scrawled on a wall inside Building 20 at the former General Electric factory complex in Fort Wayne, Indiana. The workers in the building manufactured electrical transformers.

The graffiti says: "Transformer Mafia. Rules Are Out The Window!"
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Old 07-15-2018   #2251
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A thick layer of broken paint chips and other dust covered the floors in most of the buildings in the former General Electric factory in Fort Wayne, Indiana. Someone wrote "GE" in the dust on one of the floors!
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Old 07-15-2018   #2252
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I read it as ICE.
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Old 07-16-2018   #2253
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This is the entrance to an office space in Building 26 at the former General Electric factory complex in Fort Wayne, Indiana. It was one of the cleanest parts of the building! Most of Building 26 was devoted to factory spaces whose walls and ceilings have had most of their paint peel off.
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Old 07-18-2018   #2254
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These urinals are in a men's restroom on the fourth floor of Building 19 at the former General Electric factory complex in Fort Wayne, Indiana. As in the rest of the building, the paint in this room was peeling from the walls and ceiling, covering the floor with a thick layer of broken paint chips and dust.
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Old 07-19-2018   #2255
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In May 2018, the Clyde Theatre reopened after it had sat vacant for more than twenty years.

The theatre was opened as a movie theater in 1951 by Clyde Quimby, who also owned the Quimby Village shopping center, where the theatre is located. The theatre was later renamed the Quimby Village Theatre and changed to a two-screen movie theatre. That's how it was when I was young, when my parents often took my sister and I there to see movies.

The tall "Clyde" sign sticking up from the top of the marquee was gone by the time I began going to see movies there in the early 1980s. The theatre closed in 1993, and after being briefly used as a church, it was abandoned. By the time I photographed it the first time, back in 2008, it had already sat empty for nearly fifteen years.

In 2017, the old theatre found new owners and a nine million dollar renovation began. The outside was restored to nearly the same configuration as it had back in 1951; the theatre got back its original name and the original "Clyde" sign was rebuilt. The inside was transformed into a live music venue, but the art deco lobby was restored to look much as it had originally.

I made this photograph of The Clyde at sunset yesterday evening.
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Old 07-20-2018   #2256
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This is on the first floor of Building 19 at the former General Electric factory complex in Fort Wayne, Indiana. I think that the machine inside the door is a generator with a fuel tank.
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Old 07-21-2018   #2257
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This is on the first floor of Building 19 at the former General Electric factory complex in Fort Wayne, Indiana. The sign by the office door says: "Right To Know Center. Material Safety Data Sheets For Hazardous Materials."
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Old 07-22-2018   #2258
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This is the last of the photographs that I have made so far of the former General Electric factory complex on Broadway in Fort Wayne, Indiana.

A workplace safety message stenciled on the floor next to some steps on the first floor of Building 19 at the former General Electric factory complex in Fort Wayne, Indiana.

It says: "Stop, Look, and Listen."

GE closed the last of their operations in Fort Wayne at the beginning of 2015. The former factory complex is being redeveloped into a housing and retail center to be called "Electric Works."
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Old 07-23-2018   #2259
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Souvenir t-shirts and baseball caps hang on the wall above the file cabinets at Fort Wayne's Famous Coney Island Hot Dogs in Fort Wayne, Indiana.

One of the shirts has the restaurant's slogan, "Our Buns Are Steamed," printed on it.

Founded in 1914, Coney Island is the oldest restaurant in the city. It has been in the same downtown building on Main Street since it opened more than a century ago.
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Old 07-24-2018   #2260
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The Sea Ray ride in motion at the 2018 Three Rivers Festival at Headwaters Park in downtown Fort Wayne, Indiana. It is a swinging boat ride, a common sight at carnivals.

I photographed it on the first night (July 13) of the annual nine day long festival, which ended last Saturday.
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Old 07-25-2018   #2261
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A carnival ride attendant playing with his cell phone while the ride is in motion behind him. He is operating the Sea Ray ride at the 2018 Three Rivers Festival at Headwaters Park in downtown Fort Wayne, Indiana.
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Old 08-02-2018   #2262
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This old Ford F-150 pickup truck from the late 1970s is on Front Street in the small town of Burr Oak, Michigan.

The truck's grille has been replaced with a piece of aluminum that has "Redneck" cut into it.
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Old 08-03-2018   #2263
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This car, a Honda Fit with California license plates, was in the parking lot of the Barnes & Noble Bookstore at the Jefferson Pointe Shopping Center in Fort Wayne, Indiana.

It has "Bernie 2016" painted on the sides, though it has been two years since Bernie Sanders lost the Democratic Party presidential nomination to Hillary Clinton.

I photographed it last week.
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Old 08-03-2018   #2264
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Many thanks for your wonderful series of photographs. The literal (in a positive way) and unsentimental commentary really complements the imagery.
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Old 08-03-2018   #2265
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Many thanks for your wonderful series of photographs. The literal (in a positive way) and unsentimental commentary really complements the imagery.



Thanks, this is a project I have spent more than 20 years working on. Trying to tell the story of life here in the midwest.
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Old 08-13-2018   #2266
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I've spent the last week doing a lot of new photographs and trying to catch up on editing!







Virgil Hoke, the 84 year old owner of Waynedale Plumbing Supply, sits at the desk behind the counter of the store. He uses an ancient manual typewriter, and says that he has never used a computer. The cat bed on the shelf behind him belonged to his old cat, Lucky, who died eight months ago. I made this portrait of Virgil last week.

Virgil and his older brother, Homer, bought the store in 1950 and they ran it together until Homer's death in 2011. Virgil told me that he wants to retire soon, because he has been having health problems. He was proud of the fact that until this year, he had not needed to go to a doctor in twenty years!

The store is located on the corner of Lower Huntington Road and Bradbury Avenue in the Waynedale area of Fort Wayne, Indiana. In addition to selling and repairing plumbing equipment, Virgil also refills propane tanks. I've been having him fill the tank on my grill for years, even though he's slightly more expensive than some other places in Fort Wayne. I love stopping in his old store to talk to him.
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Old 08-13-2018   #2267
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Great portrait. That’s a Smith-Corona Silent-Super, from the looks of it. Early-mid 1950s. Amongst the 21 typewriters in my collection I have one nearly identical. Thanks for continuing this series, Chris.
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Old 08-13-2018   #2268
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Great portrait. Thatís a Smith-Corona Silent-Super, from the looks of it. Early-mid 1950s. Amongst the 21 typewriters in my collection I have one nearly identical. Thanks for continuing this series, Chris.

Wow, only on RFF would someone recognize a 60 year old typewriter by name and model Its cool to see that people collect these machines.

Can you still buy ribbons for these? I guess so, since Virgil is still using his.
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Old 08-13-2018   #2269
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Chris-I've seen the ribbons on Ebay.
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Old 08-15-2018   #2270
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Another photograph of Waynedale Plumbing. I love the "Complaint Button" in front of the cash register; it's a RAT TRAP!
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Old 08-15-2018   #2271
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Wow, only on RFF would someone recognize a 60 year old typewriter by name and model Its cool to see that people collect these machines.

Can you still buy ribbons for these? I guess so, since Virgil is still using his.
Ribbons are still being made, readily available.
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Old 08-15-2018   #2272
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Chris
This is an amazing wonderful photograph.

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In May 2018, the Clyde Theatre reopened after it had sat vacant for more than twenty years.

The theatre was opened as a movie theater in 1951 by Clyde Quimby, who also owned the Quimby Village shopping center, where the theatre is located. The theatre was later renamed the Quimby Village Theatre and changed to a two-screen movie theatre. That's how it was when I was young, when my parents often took my sister and I there to see movies.

The tall "Clyde" sign sticking up from the top of the marquee was gone by the time I began going to see movies there in the early 1980s. The theatre closed in 1993, and after being briefly used as a church, it was abandoned. By the time I photographed it the first time, back in 2008, it had already sat empty for nearly fifteen years.

In 2017, the old theatre found new owners and a nine million dollar renovation began. The outside was restored to nearly the same configuration as it had back in 1951; the theatre got back its original name and the original "Clyde" sign was rebuilt. The inside was transformed into a live music venue, but the art deco lobby was restored to look much as it had originally.

I made this photograph of The Clyde at sunset yesterday evening.
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Old 4 Weeks Ago   #2273
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The faucet repair counter at Waynedale Plumbing Supply. The signs above the counter say: "New Life For Your Old Faucet."

Many of the faucet parts on the wall behind the counter are decades old. Built in 1946, Waynedale Plumbing looks like a place frozen in time. The owner, Virgil Hoke, told me that he and his now-deceased brother, Homer, bought the business in 1950!

I had first photographed this scene four years earlier in black & white, and little has changed in those four years!

Waynedale Plumbing is on Lower Huntington Road in the Waynedale area of Fort Wayne, Indiana.

I made this photograph earlier this month.
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Old 4 Weeks Ago   #2274
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I noticed the P51 model on Virgil's desk ,was he a pilot during WW11 ?
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Old 4 Weeks Ago   #2275
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I noticed the P51 model on Virgil's desk ,was he a pilot during WW11 ?
Bill



No, he's not old enough to have served in the war. His brother was in the army during the war, but I don't know if he was a pilot.
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Old 4 Weeks Ago   #2276
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I should have done the math...I'm 75 and my dad was a B-17 pilot at 22 or so....he was 21 years old when I was born.......thanks,Bill
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Old 4 Weeks Ago   #2277
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Another photograph from Waynedale Plumbing Supply in Fort Wayne.

This display of kitchen faucets stands by the store's front window. Behind it are rows of shelves holding bins full of small plumbing parts, many of which have been there for decades.
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Old 4 Weeks Ago   #2278
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Really strong work Chris. I also really like the portrait of Virgil. Great thread.
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Old 4 Weeks Ago   #2279
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Really strong work Chris. I also really like the portrait of Virgil. Great thread.



Thanks. I have several more of Virgil's shop to add in the next few days.
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Old 3 Weeks Ago   #2280
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Barbecue grill replacement parts at Waynedale Plumbing Supply. There isn't much for sale, and the sign is old and faded. The store's owner, Virgil Hoke, told me that he hasn't sold any of that stuff in more than four years. He thinks that it is because modern grills are basically disposable, so no one bothers repairing them anymore.
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