"Gunkanjima (軍艦島) – literally ‘Battleship Island’ – is the nickname for Hashima Island (端島), named so because it has an uncanny resemblance to a military warship. Once just a small reef, the discovery of coal in 1810 led to the installation of mining facilities and eventually gave rise to a population, all densely packed into a self-contained metropolis.
But by 1974, the dream was gone. Petroleum came in place of coal, the mines were shut down and the now jobless workers were forced to leave. In a matter of days the island was deserted – everything left exactly as it was, to slumber eternally in the same position like a broken clock face. (...)"