Inside Kenyon Hall, Emporia, Kansas – On my first walk-through of the building, I trudged through endless expances of broken glass, piles of abandoned materials rotting in hallways, profanity-laced spray paint, then find an entrance to a caged-in area resembling a detention cell more than anything else. On the north end of the room old church pews are lined up against the fenced cage wall. The only entrance to the cell is through the back of an old utility truck, which was somehow carted to the 3rd floor and mounted in the wall. This place will spook you, when you’re all alone in the building – at least you think, you hope that you’re alone. Every sound echoes through the hallways long after it should. It takes a while to know what you’re looking at. On my second trip, in morning light, I’m over the initial shock of the place, and realize it’s simply an indoor basketball court. By my third walk-through I’m beginning the appreciate the creativity behind the plays of color, the playfulness, and imagination that went into these areas. This is one of the cleanest rooms in the building, although I did move a couple boards and a chair off of the floor for this photo.
The west Wall of the Cage
Entrance to the Cage