Ghost towns of California, Keeler and Darwin

A photo diary from Julia Stone:

A handful of people still live in the old mining towns just beyond Death Valley, although in Keeler we only saw crazy cars – apparently still in use – as there were no people around. This was not surprising, due to the time of day and the temperatures, but in Darwin we met Jay. Jay either moved in a few years before or moved into the trailer that is now his home after his house burned down a few years back. It was hard to follow his story. Jay talked a lot…

He showed us around his crazy rock garden/exhibition, made up of stones collected from his surroundings and the abandoned mines. He told us that he sometimes spent days underground before resurfacing to make his rock carvings and sculptures out of scrap metal and glass. He lives from the rocks he sells to the occasional passerby. Later we met a friend and neighbour, who also is in the handful of people that still call Darwin home. She was on her way to bring gas to someone whose car had run dry somewhere in the desert. She also organized the yearly dance in the dancehall, to show that even in ghost towns there is still some life to be lived…

Words and Pictures: Julia Stone

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