I’m not sure what’s going on in my empty head at the mo, but I’ve found myself getting more and more obsessed with abandoned monuments and ghost towns. There’s something about their state of disrepair that sends shivers down my spine and gives me a semi-lob on at the same time. Just what is so sexy about annihilation? I dunno, just another crack pot facet of human nature I guess. We’re all sickos.
Hashima Island, or Battleship Island as it’s more commonly known, was a coal mining town, owned by Mitsubishi, which was populated for about 100 years until 1974 when the coal ran out and consequently the work. New jobs were then only offered to a handful of the workers on a first come, first served basis; So the island was deserted ASAP as people left everything to get off that wretched rock with their fingers crossed for more work.
Conditions on Hashima sound massively rubbish, at it’s peak there were over 5000 people living on this 400m x 140m bollock of rock, that’s just 1.5 meters per person, making it the most densley populated place the planet had ever seen, before or since. Not everyone that lived there had any choice either, recruits from other areas of Asia were forced to work and die there. Basically a large coropration – Mitsubishi – made butt loads of cash out of other people’s suffering – no change there then.
They’re trying to turn it into a World Heritage Site currently but the South Koreans are kicking off. One old guy that was forced to work there said “The Island was a living hell”. You could not dare to escape it because of high breakwaters and huge waves. By the end of the war, Koreans were involved in dangerous work and they were often vulnerable to violence of mine supervisors” Yeah doesn’t seem quite right having a place of imprisonment as a cultural ideal does it?
The island was the property of Mistsubishi originally, but is now owned by the town of Nagasaki, no one is allowed on because it’s falling to bits and is about as safe as milking a tiger. Journalists are occasionally let on and of course these modern day urban explorer types always find a way. However they managed to nab these snaps there’s some pretty awesome looking carnage there.
And if this has whet your post apocalyptic whistle there’s a cool documentary about the island here: