Congratulations to Robin Washburn of Dallas, the winner of the Flickr Photo of the Week contest. This Robin’s third time to win our little contest. Her most recent win was last March. She follows last week’s winner Elizabeth Buchanan.
If you would like to participate in the Flickr Photo of the Week contest, all you need to do is upload your photo to our Flickr group page. It’s fine to submit a photo you took earlier than the current week, but we are hoping that the contest will inspire you to go out and shoot something fantastic this week to share with Art&Seek users. If the picture you take involves a facet of the arts, even better. The contest week will run from Tuesday to Monday, and the Art&Seek staff will pick a winner on Friday afternoon. We’ll notify the winner through FlickrMail (so be sure to check those inboxes) and ask you to fill out a short survey to tell us a little more about yourself and the photo you took. We’ll post the winners’ photo on Tuesday.
Title of photo: “Haunted Meatpacking Plant”
Equipment: Nikon D750 with Nikkor 28-300
Tell us more about your photo: My father worked at the Armour slaughter house and meat packing plant at the stockyards in north Fort Worth. He fixed cars and trucks.
On rare days when my mother kept the car, we would go in the afternoon to pick up my father when he got off work. Tiny in the back seat of the old Ford, I knew we were there when the car bucked and bounced across about a dozen sets of railroad tracks. That scared me terribly, I was so glad when the car stopped below the Armour logo.
Then we waited. Standing in the back seat I saw livestock holding pens on the west side of the tracks stretching as far as I could see, north and south. I watched the livestock being driven from the pens, along the ramps over the tracks, and into the buildings on the east side; one ramp into Armour on the north, another to Swift’s on the south. Usually it was cattle, occasionally other animals. I could make out their silhouettes through the lumber of the ramps.
When the whistle blew I watched the Swift’s office building. It’s still there now, it’s still nice. It’s a law office. But then, men would immediately pour out of the bottom floor, and more would fill the balcony around the second floor, going for the stairs. They were walking so fast! They reminded me of the little black ants in my back yard which would run around in a panic when I bothered them. The men soon were gone. Eventually my father would arrive, get in on the driver’s side, and drive away. He did not drive back over the tracks. I liked that.
The Armour and Swift’s slaughter houses and packing plants were huge operations in the early and middle 20th century. The ruin of the Swift’s slaughter house in this image is almost the only remaining structure. It’s only functions now are to display the works of graffiti artists, and to threaten falling down upon them as they work. And, of course, to offer shelter to any ghosts who would like to haunt it.