Hey adventurer’s, it’s been a while. It’s not that I have forgotten you or have put my camera away. Nothing could be farther from the truth. I am actually busier than ever. Recently, I took some time off from being busy and headed out on the wandering roads of Pennsylvania. While on one of those roads I found a small paper sign tacked to a tree next to an old dirt road off the side of the highway. The sign had an arrow pointing toward the road and the word “Forlorn” hand written on it. Here is what I found in Forlorn, PA.  

Forlorn

I was up before the sun this August day. On my way I was greeted by the sun ripping through the morning fog. How do you know it’s going to be a good day for photography and exploring? When you find something definitely NOT dead on the road to your destination.  

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About 50 miles from home and then another 50 miles south of the NY/PA border I run across a small town tucked off a secondary highway. Once full of life during the Erie/Lackawanna railway heyday, this town remains but a shell of it’s former self. Not much remains. 2 or three mobile homes, the original town church, a very small bridge and this massive concrete tunnel with the date 1913 stamped over the arch.  

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I get the sense that this was the little town that never was. The railroad put a stop here and this magnificent tunnel in hopes that the town would grow but it was never achieved. So many small towns in PA are nothing more the skeletons. Big industry moves in, builds, then disappears. Leaving the remnants to waste away in the dust. Through the opposite side of the tunnel and 300 yards up the dirt road is my first find. A beautiful old train station.  

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Unfortunately, unlike so many of these old stations that are saved, this one is doomed.  

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Careful to avoid the poison ivy, I cautiously peer inside.  

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The early morning sun rays bath the decay in a golden light.  

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The tracks still run by this old station. But the rails are quiet mostly these days and the ties are old and tired.  

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It seems no matter how remote the location, vandals have to destroy it. I really don’t get the mentality. Purposefully carrying spray paint to deface an old structure with profanity says what about your IQ? I love and support graffiti, but straight up destruction and tagging triggers my kill switch.  

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The wonder and sense of presence of people waiting for the train and seeking their own adventure in life is quickly squashed by destruction and spray painted gibberish.  

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Why do we feel the need to destroy and not enjoy. To not respect our historic sites like these? Sure it’s in a nowhere town in a nowhere place, but some of us believe in these old places and consider them sacred to those who passed through their doors in the past. Feeling disgusted with my fellow man I head up the road a few hundred yards to the old Lackawanna Service Tower. Accessible only from the rail bed high above, this concrete structure stands strong over the dirt road below.  

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  I make my way up to the rail bed to find the entrance which I had previously seen a photo featuring an iron spiral staircase. I was excited to get a photo.  

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  Unfortunately the staircase was removed as was the entire interior of the structure. Nothing but spray paint garbage all over the interior. Luckily, the building is having the last laugh as it’s massive construction was definitely built to last. Not only are the walls made of concrete but so is the roof. Paint it, scratch in your initials, strip it bare, it will continue to stand for another 200 years. Long after the idiots who attempt to deface and damage it are dead. The rain will wash away the vandalism, but never the building. Do you have a short photo story to tell that fits into the F.O.R.D. format? Write to us @ found@theartofdecay.com and we may feature you. ‘Til next time, keep heading down that road!  

Next Episode: Coming Soon!