Fordlandia was created by Henry Ford in 1928 to cultivate and process rubber in the Amazon Rainforest. Over 5,000 square miles of forest was cleared for the cultivation of a rubber plantation however without the bio diversity of the forest environment the trees were ravaged by pests and blighted by disease.
Ford wanted to bring an American ideal town to the tropics, he constructed rows of neat American style weatherboarded houses with a school, a hospital, railway and a dance hall where they conducted weekly square dances. The workers were put on a strict diet and worked from the hours of 9-5. It became more than just a quest for rubber but it had become a social and cultural experiment.
After 6 years of failed crops and dispirited workers, the town was abandoned and the land sold back to the Brazilian Government. What is left behind is a time capsule of 1930's industrial Midwest town overgrown with tropical flora.
Photos by Juriaan Booij © Studio Swine