Mechanic Street

An American flag hanging on the veranda of an old brick house behind a tall hedge at the corner of Boone Street and Mechanic Street in Fort Wayne, Indiana.
American flag on the veranda of an old brick house in the West Main Street area of Fort Wayne, Indiana.

This house is on the corner of Boone Street and Mechanic Street, in the working class West Main Street area of Fort Wayne, Indiana. This was once a wealthy area, and many of the houses, like this one, are large and ornate, though many are in poor condition. The American flag on this house hangs on the veranda facing west toward Mechanic Street.

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©2015 Christopher Crawford. Please do not use my photos without permission.

Railroad Crossing on Sampson Road #2

The last car on a train moves as a blur on the tracks over a railroad crossing at sunset in rural Allen County, Indiana.
Last car on the train passing over the railroad crossing on Sampson Road in rural Allen County, Indiana.

There had been rain off and on all day, but it stopped briefly in the evening. I took advantage of the lull in the rain to do some photographs in rural Allen County, east of New Haven, Indiana.

This railroad crossing is on Sampson Road, just north of Dawkins Road. I photographed it a few minutes before this train crossed, then I made this photograph of the end of the train passing over the road.

See another photograph of this railroad crossing, done a few minutes before the train passed through.

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©2015 Christopher Crawford. Please do not use my photos without permission.

Roadkill Deer

A roadkilled deer on the edge of Yohne Road, in front of a cornfield under a blue sky full of fluffy clouds in rural Allen County, Indiana.
Deer roadkill in rural Indiana

White-tailed deer roadkill is a common sight on rural roads in Indiana. In recent years, due to overpopulation, deer have become one of the leading causes of auto accidents here. They are starting to be seen in urban areas. I’ve seen several at night in my neighborhood in Fort Wayne, Indiana’s second largest city!

I found this doe on the side of Yohne Road, just west of the entrance to Fox Island County Park, a nature preserve in southwest Allen County. She didn’t look like she had been dead very long, but the flies were already buzzing around her.

I rarely see deer here during the day, but at night, Yohne Road is a dangerous place to drive because so many of them will jump out in front of cars.

I actually had a deer hit my car one day in 2008! It jumped out of the ditch in the background of the photograph, and slammed its head into the drivers side door of the car I was driving. After bouncing off the car, the deer got up and ran away!

The stream in the ditch along the road is the Little River, which flows from the southwest edge of Fort Wayne down to Huntington, where it joins the Wabash River. The land drained by the Little River was once a vast swamp. Drained in the late 19th Century, the former swampland is covered in corn and soybean fields today. A small section of the old wetlands are preserved in Fox Island Park.

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©2015 Christopher Crawford. Please do not use my photos without permission.

Three Rivers Festival 2015 #3

Two young women watch the Super Round-up ride as it spins almost vertically at the 2015 Three Rivers Festival in Fort Wayne, Indiana.
Two women watch the Super Round Up ride spin near-vertically at the Three Rivers Festival at Headwaters Park in Fort Wayne, Indiana.

Two women watch the Super Round-Up ride at the 2015 Three Rivers Festival. Riders stand up inside the circle, which spins rapidly enough to hold them against the steel mesh sides of the ride through centrifugal force. The ride then tilts upward to a near-vertical position!

The Three Rivers Festival takes place every summer in July at Headwaters Park in downtown Fort Wayne, Indiana. I go every year and photograph people at the festival. I made this photograph in the evening, as it was getting close to sunset.

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©2015 Christopher Crawford. Please do not use my photos without permission.

Three Rivers Festival 2015 #2

A very young boy sitting in a baby stroller playing games on a smartphone while his parents play carnival games at the 2015 Three Rivers Festival in Fort Wayne, Indiana.
A young boy in a stroller plays games on a smartphone while his parents play carnival games at the Three Rivers Festival in Fort Wayne, Indiana.

I am rarely shocked by anything in our world today, but I admit that I was taken aback by this scene. This little boy is young enough to ride in a baby stroller, but his parents have him playing games on a smartphone to keep him occupied while they play a carnival game at the 2015 Three Rivers Festival.

As a public school teacher, I’ve seen high school and middle school students so thoroughly enthralled by thier smartphones and the music, social media, and videos they access through them that they are barely able to function in the real world. Saddens me to see one so young already being pushed down that rabbit hole.

The Three Rivers Festival takes place every summer in July at Headwaters Park in downtown Fort Wayne, Indiana. I go every year and photograph people at the festival. I made this photograph in the evening, as it was getting close to sunset.

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©2015 Christopher Crawford. Please do not use my photos without permission.

Three Rivers Festival 2015 #1

An African-American boy jumps and shoots the ball at a carnival basketball game while has parents and sister watch at the 2015 Three Rivers Festival in Fort Wayne, Indiana.
A little boy tries a jump shot at the basketball game at the 2015 Three Rivers Festival in Fort Wayne, Indiana.

A young boy jumps and shoots the ball at the basketball game during the 2015 Three Rivers Festival while his parents and sister watch. He didn’t win, but I don’t think many others did, either. I went to the week-long festival almost every day, and never once saw anyone win the basketball game. The sign says “Non-Regulation Rims.” I think that means they’re smaller than the ball!

The Three Rivers Festival takes place every summer in July at Headwaters Park in downtown Fort Wayne, Indiana. I go every year and photograph people at the festival. I made this photograph in the evening, as it was getting close to sunset.

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©2015 Christopher Crawford. Please do not use my photos without permission.

Confederate Flags

A Confederate flag with the word Redneck written across it hangs from a tree in the backyard of a house in a working class neighborhood in Fort Wayne, Indiana.
“Redneck” Confederate flag on a tree behind a house in Fort Wayne, Indiana.

This Confederate battle flag hangs on a tree in the backyard of a house on the corner of Saint Marys Avenue and High Street in Fort Wayne, Indiana. The word “Redneck” is often used as a pejorative for poor white people, but many poor and working-class whites have embraced the name.

I talked to the woman who lives here for quite a while. She gave an articulate defense of the Confederate flag, and her reasons for displaying it. In the weeks before I photographed this flag, there has been a strident campaign on the internet to remove the Confederate flag from public view. Racist groups and individuals often use the Confederate flag, though many if not most of the southerners and ‘rednecks’ who display are not racists. For them, it is simply a part of southern culture and history.

After I photographed this flag, the owner told me that I should go across the street to the Hitch-In-Post Tavern to see the Confederate flag that hangs inside.

A Confederate flag with a roundel in the center that has a skeleton carrying a Confederate Flag, surrounded by the phrase, The South Will Rise Again. It hangs inside the Hitch-In-Post Tavern in Fort Wayne, Indiana.
The roundel in the middle of this Confederate flag has a skeleton holding the Confederate flag, surrounded by the motto: “The South Will Rise Again.”

This Confederate battle flag hangs from the rail in front of the DJ booth in the Hitch-In-Post Tavern at the corner of High Street and Saint Marys Avenue on the working-class northwest side of Fort Wayne, Indiana.

The roundel in the center of the flag has a skeleton carrying a Confederate flag, surrounded by the motto “The South Will Rise Again.”

A skeleton carrying a Confederate flag, with the motto, The South Will Rise Again.
Closeup crop of the roundel in the Confederate flag at the Hitch-In-Post Tavern.

I photographed the outside of the Hitch-In-Post back in 2012.

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©2015 Christopher Crawford. Please do not use my photos without permission.

House on Dinnen Avenue

A house decorated with several small American flags, patriotic bunting, and a wooden Uncle Sam on Dinnen Avenue in Fort Wayne, Indiana.
A patriotically decorated house in Fort Wayne, Indiana.

This house is on Dinnen Avenue, just south of Thompson Avenue, in the Broadway area of Fort Wayne, Indiana. I don’t think I have seen a house with so many American flags on display! The wooden cut-out is Uncle Sam.

This house is in nicer condition than most in this old working-class neighborhood, but many of the homes in the area display the American flag and other patriotic decorations.

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©2015 Christopher Crawford. Please do not use my photos without permission.

Bill’s House #3

An old man with a big beard stands in front of a large American flag on the front porch of his house on the working-class west side of Fort Wayne, Indiana.
Bill standing in front of the huge American flag on the front porch of his house in Fort Wayne, Indiana.

An old man named Bill stands on the front porch of his house in front of the giant American flag that covers one side of the porch. His house is on Huron Street, in the working class West Main Street area of Fort Wayne, Indiana. This is the last of three photographs that I made of Bill and his house last month.

See the first photograph of Bill’s House

See the second photograph of Bill’s House

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©2015 Christopher Crawford. Please do not use my photos without permission.

Modern Life is Rubbish

Modern Life Is Rubbish, graffiti spray painted on the side of an abandoned industrial building in Fort Wayne, Indiana.
Graffiti on the side of an abandoned building in Fort Wayne, Indiana. The words are the title of an album by British alternative band Blur.

This observation on the state of life in modern America is spray-painted on the side of an abandoned building in Fort Wayne, Indiana. This is one of several industrial buildings on the corner of Leesburg Road and Lansing Avenue, across the street from the University of Saint Francis.

I photographed it in the evening, in the last light of the day as the sun was setting.

The words are the title of a record by Blur, a British alternative rock band.

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©2015 Christopher Crawford. Please do not use my photos without permission.