Photographer Matthew Christopher has been documenting old, abandoned, and endangered buildings for the past eight years on his website, Abandoned America, in an effort to create a living memory of places that might not survive otherwise.
But he doesn't take only conventional photos. Matthew also creates stunning 360-degree panoramas, effectively placing the viewer inside the buildings themselves. Check them out for yourself by clicking and dragging on the images below to explore the rooms.
The Richmond Generating Station - Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
From Abandoned America: "Built in 1915 and opened in 1925, the Richmond Generating Station in Philadelphia is a neoclassical cathedral to the might of industry. The vaulted, crumbling roof of the main turbine hall soars 130 feet over what were once the largest turbines in the world. This coal burning power plant has festered in its own corrosive chemical stew since 1985, the year it was abandoned. Nonetheless, it is perhaps the most amazing and awe-inspiring building i have ever seen."
Unfortunately, the generating station is currently in limbo. Although it's likely that the building will be torn down when there are funds available to do so, it survives today because it is considered too expensive to save, and too expensive to demolish.
The J.W. Cooper School - Shenandoah, Pennsylvania
From Preservation Pennsylvania: "Originally scheduled to open in 1918, the 3-story stone school building [...] was commandeered and used as a temporary hospital and morgue during the flu epidemic of 1918, when the local hospital was unable to accommodate the large number of victims. In May 1919 the building was dedicated as the "New Shenandoah High School". It was later renamed the J.W. Cooper High School in memory of the school's first principal. The school remained in use until 1986 when it was replaced with a new facility."
Although the school building was abandoned for decades, it was recently purchased by a private buyer interested in rehabbing it as a community center. So far, most of the preservation efforts have been focused on the exterior of the building, and a vintage clothing and jewelry store is located inside as a stopgap while more funding and volunteer labor is pursued.
For more 360-degree panoramas inside these and other buildings, see the full list on Abandoned America.
The National Trust for Historic Preservation works to save America's historic places. Join us today to help protect the places that matter to you.