Ghost Town, USA is a short film that Toepfer created for Harley-Davidson’s RIDEBOOK campaign (which brought folks together from different artistic lifestyles and backgrounds to celebrate life on the open road – the history of American motorcycle culture.) Here photographer & filmmaker Scott Toepfer explores America’s past through the lens of ghost towns and the haunting lessons they hold.
“The visitable ghost towns across the Western U.S. are few and far between today. Most have either decayed beyond recognition, or have turned into gift shop trinket towns selling $10 keychains and fake gold. Thankfully, Bodie, California has a different story. A gold mining town established in the late 19th century, it quickly became one of California’s largest cities – and as any famed mining town would, it was filled with saloons, brothels, and other establishments of ill repute. Much of the town burned in the fires of 1892 and 1932, forcing most of its remaining residents to leave one of the toughest towns in the west. When the last of the residents left in the 50’s, the California Park Service took over in ’64 to preserve the structures and share its history… with us, and a few hundred other tourists daily.”
∆ Click above to watch “Ghost Town, U.S.A. by Scott Toepfer ∆