We first became aware of Brantford some years ago when our friend Mark Johnson sent photos of Brantford in winter. In the summer of 2013, we visited Brantford for ourselves and found a very quiet, near-ghost town with an impressive but crumbling public school, among other things. These photos were taken in 2015 after we found ourselves looking for something to photograph when another location we had planned to visit didn’t work out.
As we drove into Brantford this time, we were surprised to see one of the classrooms had collapsed sometime between 2013 and 2015 after the exterior wall crumbled. It was a tangible reminder that exploring abandoned places is dangerous.
I bet this was loud when it came down.
Last time, we explored the inside of the school a little, but this time, we decided to take a closer look before we entered. After a brief walk around the school, it seemed clear to us that it is no longer safe to explore. The exterior walls are bowing on all sides and it is only a matter of time before the whole thing comes down. We would not recommend anyone explore the interior of this school anymore.
Goodbye, Brantford Public School.
Sometime in the two years since we last visited, there was a grassfire in Brantford. One of the houses which stood in 2013 was reduced to burned ruins, and the large red barn we photographed last time was missing too. Several other structures came within a few feet of burning.
A visitor to our Facebook page said Brantford is now a true ghost town with no remaining residents. There is a house in Brantford (not pictured) that appears to have been the last one that was occupied, with a satellite dish on the roof, but it no longer seems to be lived in. There are, however, families living in the area who still consider themselves Brantford residents. The Ludwig family lives not even a mile down the road.
Photos by Troy Larson and Terry Hinnenkamp, copyright © 2016 Sonic Tremor Media
Troy Larson is an author, photographer, gentleman adventurer (debatable) from Fargo, North Dakota, and co-founder of Ghosts of North Dakota. @NorthDakotaTroy