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    Posted January 17, 2014 by
    RBMcGrath
    Location
    Jacksonville, Arkansas
    Assignment
    Assignment
    This iReport is part of an assignment:
    Abandoned buildings

    More from RBMcGrath

    The Ghost in The Lura

     

    Augusta, Arkansas has a population of only twenty one hundred. In the mid to late 1800's it was considered a boom town, nestled on the banks of the beautiful White River.

     

    Alas, like many other deteriorating communities in small town America, Augusta's once vibrant one block Main Street crumbles in the face of time. It's wonderful, quaint buildings are quickly falling prey to neglect and it's historical, dying architecture is becoming but a memory to it's remaining inhabitants.

     

    We visited Augusta in September of 2013 as part of a photography expedition of small towns.. One of the most fascinating buildings that caught my attention was an old movie theater called The Lura. It is amazing to stand in front of The Lura and imagine how wonderful it must have been in it's glory days of movies, popcorn and Saturday nights.

     

    My fellow photographer and I wanted to get inside and take pictures, however, we didn't want to trespass so we went to the small Augusta police station and asked an officer if it would be possible to shoot some photos of the interior. The officer made a few phone calls and managed to get permission to take us inside.

     

    Once inside we took several photographs. It was a sight to behold. The utter destruction and neglect was horrifying to see and it made us feel sad that what was once a grand, joyful, vibrant building was now dying a slow and humilating death.

     

    But the real chills came when I processed a photograph of the inside of the theater. Standing where the movie screen used to be and looking towards the front of the interior of the building I took a picture of what was once the projection room. Look at the four projector windows in the upper left of the photograph. Now look at the far left  window. In that projector opening is a figure. Problem is, there was no one else in the building except me, my friend and the police officer.

     

    For our entire two hour trip home, the excitement and the conversation evolved around the Ghost in The Lura.

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