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Sunday, March 31, 2013

Decaying Southern Homes

When I first got interested in photography one of the first things I became interested was photographing old homes.  Here in the Mountains we have no shortage off them.  I love tin roofs, peeling paint and all the other wonderful decay.  The heat, the plants and the moisture really transforms these homes to works of art.  Here is a collection of some of my favorites. 

Ducktown, TN


Resilience, TN

Franklin, NC

Franklin, NC

Westminster, SC
Glenville, NC


Hayesville, NC

Franklin, NC
Franklin, NC

Franklin, NC
Turtletown, TN
I have no idea what this odd structure is.

Murphy, NC
This larger home is covered in a wonderful material known as "Tar Paper".  This material is normally reserved for shacks.  We call this the "Tar Paper Mansion".

Topton, NC

Sylva,  NC
Otto, NC
Somewhere in the Middle of Nowhere, NC
Angelique's Paradise Estate.  I have no idea what this place is, but I would bet it has some amazing stories.

Waynesville, NC
Canton, NC
I nicely asked the owner if I could take some close up pictures of this magnificent home, but I was told "no".

Franklin, NC
I always loved how the house looked like a big skull, a peek inside shows an even creepier side.


In case you can't quite make that out it says "The ones who enter are the ones who die, the ones who die are the ones who we kill"  Charming.

Of course any rural explorer worth his salt takes peeks inside this abandoned marvels.

Somewhere in GA
Bowman, SC
Outside of Athens, GA
Outside of Athens, GA

The Carpetbagger

Please feel free to e-mail me at jacobthecarpetbagger@gmail.com
and check out my Flickr Photostream

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Creepy Rabbits

Easter is upon us and I found no better way to celebrate then to share my collection of creepy rabbit pictures.  I hope enjoy!


Bloodthirsty rabbits from Santa's Land in Cherokee, NC.


American Celebration on Parade, Shenandoah Caverns, VA


The Easter Bunny Himself.  Franklin, NC


The Easter Bunny.  Lookout Mountain, GA


Easter Bunny.  Babyland General, Cleveland, GA


Cabbage Patch Rabbit Hyrbrid.  Babyland General Cleveland, GA

 

Asheville, NC

Cleveand, GA


This giant Fiberglass Head used to be part of "Bunny Golf" in Pigeon Forge, TN.  From what I understand it was a fairly standard mini-golf course, but it was full of hundreds of live rabbits that served as obstacles.



Mountain State Fair, Fletcher, NC


And of course, two heads are always cuter then one.  Key West, FL

This wouldn't be a complete list on creepy bunnies if I didn't include the creepiest Bunny of them all.  The Rabbit from Santa's Land


The Carpetbagger

Please feel free to e-mail me at jacobthecarpetbagger@gmail.com
and check out my Flickr Photostream

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Follow the Leader Wax Museum: Wax is Reborn

There are few things in this world I enjoy more then an old fashion wax museum.   Way back in 2011 I took a spontaneous roadtrip to Cave City, KY.  Cave City is a tourist mecca from a past time with alot of old decaying spots to check out.  You get the feeling that in a few years there won't be anything left.  I checked off a spot that had been on my list for years:  The Mammoth Cave Wax Museum.

Even by wax museum standards the Mammoth Cave Wax Museum was outdated.  In their Oval Office the most recent president was Jimmy Carter, but for some reason they let Nixon sit at the desk.  I guess I wouldn't want to argue with him either.


And they crammed Nobel Peace prize winner Ralph Bunche in there too.   Maybe they were hoping people would think he was Obama.

Each display was behind worn plexiglass.  As you moved to the next diorama the light would slowly cut on and a narrator would chime in explaining who the people in the room were.

There were some odd mixes as they seemed to struggle to find themes for each room.


Here we have Marion Anderson, Robert Kennedy, Billy Graham and the Pope.


And of course legendary best friends Neil Armstrong and Sammy Davis Junior.  BTW, Neil is holding an actual moon Rock.

The age of the museum really shows during the Dolly Parton presentation as they talk about her as a rising star in Country Music.


The place had some definite charm, as it was one of the last pure roadside wax museums......



Here are a few more notables from the Museum.


Charlie Chaplin.....


Robert E Lee and Andrew Jackson hanging out in a barn....


Jesus.......


Daniel Boone.....


German dwarf scientist that I forgot the name of.....


Geronimo in blue jeans.........

Then the bad news struck.  Less then a year after I visited the Museum shuttered its doors and auctioned off all the figures.  My hopes of maybe snagging one was dashed when I saw what they were going for.  They started off at 1,000 dollars.   Even this guy.......


But it turned out that the news would not all be sad.   35 of the figures were purchased by a man in Warm Springs, GA who sprung to action and quickly opened up a new museum: Follow the Leaders Wax Museum.

I had a chance to visit it last weekend and see some of my old friends.


The figures looked like they had taken a shower somewhere between Cave City and Warm Springs and were now displayed in well lit displays.  Instead of a recording the tour was narratored by a wonderful docent who was not only knowledgeable about the people represented, but had a great appreciation and knowledge of the Wax Figures themselves.


It was great to see the some of the old gang.

Dolly looks great....




Here is Neil Armstrong, sadly he was missing both his moon rock and Sammy Davis Junior.

They were still working one some quirks.....Apparently Eleanor Roosevelt's head keeps falling off.



One thing that the Cave City Museum failed to mention was that some of the figures were actually cast from the people they portrayed.  For instance, the Wax Figure of Albert Einstein was actually taken directly from
Einstein's face. 



The fact that the Cave City museum did not mention this is puzzling.  Even cooler, the figure is actually autographed by Einstein.  This was previously covered by his hair, but the new museum displays him so the signature can be seen.



One of the most interesting stories the docent shared was the creation of their Lincoln assassination scene.


Apparently, the Cave City Lincoln was on their wish list.....


Unfortunately they were out-bid.  Lincoln simply was too valuable and expensive, as a president of his stature should be.

However, out of the 35 figures they did purchase they did manage to score "Frank James".  The brother of this man: Jesse James.






Apparently Frank was Jesse's older brother and partner.  I had never heard of him, but I am guessing he was the Art Garfunkel of the James Brothers.


Of course the Frank James in Cave City, wasn't exactly a spitting image of Frank James.  He was an outlaw afterall, so he had a bandanna covering his whole face as he robbed a banker.


When Frank arrived in Warm Springs a worker at the wax museum pulled off the hankerchief and were shocked at what they saw.  Frank James was actually a re-purposed spare Lincoln!


The museum had managed to score a Lincoln for a Frank James price!

It was great to see these figures being preserved.  I would definitely recommend it for anyone passing through the state of Georgia. 

The Carpetbagger

Please feel free to e-mail me at jacobthecarpetbagger@gmail.com
and check out my Flickr Photostream