Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Chesterfield In Winter

Chesterfield, Idaho is an agricultural ghost town in the southeastern part of the state.  It was founded in 1880 by Mormon pioneers.  It was a hard place to make a living, and gradually became a ghost town due to drought, harsh winters, and the depression.
Today, Chesterfield is undergoing a revival of sorts as descendants of the early families are restoring the town.  The Chesterfield Foundation recently purchased the beautiful Muir-Butterfield house, and has started restoration by rebuilding the porch.
The LDS Meeting House is probably the best preserved building in town.  When I first started visiting Chesterfield it was a museum, but now it has been restored back to its original form.  In summer, many of the buildings are open for visitors and tours.

In winter, the town is boarded up, deserted, and resting quietly in the snow and cold.  Linda and I visited with three other members of our Sharp Shooters Camera Club.

There is a lot to see and photograph in the quiet of winter.  A restored tractor is parked near the shadow of rusty farm equipment, and interesting details are everywhere.

Old equipment, frosty fences, interesting buildings, ancient gas pumps, snowdrifts – the photo opportunities are wonderful.

The buildings include log cabins, stately brick homes, religious structures, and stores.

A windmill stands alone on a hilltop.

There are 41 buildings in the historic district, and most near the center of town have been restored, but many around the outskirts of town still are in “ghost town” condition, so there is a nice mix of photography subjects.  If you want to see the interiors and talk to knowledgeable people about the town, visit between Memorial Day and Labor Day.  But if you want to see Chesterfield when it is deserted and quiet, visit in the winter.

Please note that all of my photos are copyrighted and must not be used without my permission.

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