The Dow Brewery

The Dow Brewery was one of the principal breweries in Quebec until the mid 1960s, when an unsubstantiated rumour positing a certain foaming additive as a possible cause for a string of alcohol-related deaths put it at the center of a health scandal. Sales of the market-leading Kingsbeer and Black Horse lagers plummeted, and the company never recovered, despite inquiry findings later published that disproved any connection. Since that time, the huge building, situated at the southern edge of Montreal's downtown, has lain in disrepair, surviving only through the annals of graffiti artists, vandals, urban explorers, and photographers. Broken staircases, machine carcasses with undecipherable panels, shells of old brewing chambers, and nesting pigeons hide in its maze-like innards. Paint, left to its own devices for half a century, cracks and peels like old tree bark. These images were captured in late October of 2008.