dead delta: the old store

 

This is the second installment of a photographic series called dead delta, which examines the shuttered, decaying, and derelict structures in Delta Junction, Alaska where I live. 

the old store

Despite an arson attempt and a few holes in the metal roof, this old wooden building on Remington Road still stands where it did decades ago when it was last open for business. I thought it was an abandoned log home for several years until I noticed the ancient gas pumps in the weeds out front one day. There’s no “Keep Out” or “Private Property” signs…or any signs, period. There’s not even a back door. The building sits open, rotting away with no hope of ever seeing another paying customer. From the layout it looks like one of those rustic convenience stores you can still find in some rural areas of Alaska. Considering the property’s location in a dead-end corner of a small town, its fate seems hardly surprising, yet there must be plenty of people who remember stopping here for gas and beer on their way to the Clearwater River boat launch. Maybe it also sold bait & tackle or had a small cafe inside. If you used to shop here, tell your story in the comments!

 Old gas pumps still sit outside the store. Other property presumably related to the store sits decaying behind the building and in the adjacent woods, including another small storage building.

Old gas pumps still sit outside the store. Other property presumably related to the store sits decaying behind the building and in the adjacent woods, including another small storage building.

 The picture window inside the arctic entry has been smashed. Enough light seeps in through the opening that you can see inside the store after your eyes adjust, but it is still rather dark and creepy inside. There’s broken glass and a charred spot on the floor where someone tried to burn the building down years ago.

The picture window inside the arctic entry has been smashed. Enough light seeps in through the opening that you can see inside the store after your eyes adjust, but it is still rather dark and creepy inside. There’s broken glass and a charred spot on the floor where someone tried to burn the building down years ago.

 These shelves were once stocked with beer (presumably) but now they only hold this single lampshade. The sign in the image below is in the same room and the door leading to it from the arctic entry has a sign reading “No Minors”.

These shelves were once stocked with beer (presumably) but now they only hold this single lampshade. The sign in the image below is in the same room and the door leading to it from the arctic entry has a sign reading “No Minors”.

 When’s the last time you saw a Meister Brau or Lowenbrau commercial? (For me, the answer is never.) Based on the beer selection I’d say the store closed in the late 1980’s or early 1990’s.

When’s the last time you saw a Meister Brau or Lowenbrau commercial? (For me, the answer is never.) Based on the beer selection I’d say the store closed in the late 1980’s or early 1990’s.

 This vacuum sits upright in the back of the store with the cord still neatly rolled up. I bet it would still run if you plugged it in. It is a Hoover, after all.

This vacuum sits upright in the back of the store with the cord still neatly rolled up. I bet it would still run if you plugged it in. It is a Hoover, after all.

 There’s a side room inside the store with a counter which still has Christmas wrapping paper and decorations left on it.

There’s a side room inside the store with a counter which still has Christmas wrapping paper and decorations left on it.

 There’s plenty of graffiti inside the store and signs of squatters. I’m not sure if this bed was left behind by the owner or brought in by a temporary resident, but it’s not in good shape anymore. In this photo you can see someone partially removed the plywood over the window to admit light and there are pieces of clothing and footwear scattered on the floor.

There’s plenty of graffiti inside the store and signs of squatters. I’m not sure if this bed was left behind by the owner or brought in by a temporary resident, but it’s not in good shape anymore. In this photo you can see someone partially removed the plywood over the window to admit light and there are pieces of clothing and footwear scattered on the floor.