Tin ceiling

Tin ceiling
Nikon Df, 28-200mm f/3.5-5.6G AF Nikkor

It’s tradition when my friend Dawn and I take a road trip that we stop for ice cream along the way. There has never failed to be an ice cream shop, even if it was just a Dairy Queen, on every road trip.

Our road trip tradition was annual from 2006 until the pandemic interrupted it. This was our first post-pandemic trip, and it felt great to be on the road again.

We explored all of the oldest alignments we could find of Indiana State Road 67 southwest from Indianapolis. When we reached Worthington we found the Route 67 Ice Cream and Diner. Inside we found a shiny, sparkling tin ceiling. It looked so good that it had to be brand new. I brought my Nikon Df to my eye to make this image. I assume that the lighting fooled the meter, turning the ceiling gray. But I love the look. Check out all of that detail!

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18 responses to “single frame: Tin ceiling”

  1. P Avatar

    You hardly ever see this type of ceiling anymore. It’s pretty neat the diner actually had a new one put in. Do you know if they were replacing an older one of the same design?

    1. Jim Grey Avatar

      I don’t know because I’d never been to this diner or town before. But this is the kind of building that might have had a tin ceiling before.

      1. P Avatar

        I thought maybe you talked to the owners or an employee about it while you were ordering your ice cream. There was a small town cafe I used to eat at fairly often when I was younger that had a beautifully ornate copper ceiling. I believe it was original. The building it was in was probably built in the early 1900’s. Tin, copper, and similarly made ceilings have always fascinated me.

  2. matt Avatar

    If your wanderings down US 50 bring you so far west as Rocky Ford, there’s a coffee shop downtown there with a ceiling like this.

    1. Jim Grey Avatar

      Such places lurk here and there!

  3. DougD Avatar

    I love tin ceilings! Our local ice cream place is in a heritage hotel and it has a tin ceiling as well.

    1. Jim Grey Avatar


  4. Marc Beebe Avatar

    I can remember when that was the standard for commercial ceilings. We used to marvel at the new mid-century modern buildings whenever encountered. Can’t say the same about the industri-dull strap-and-panel design that replaced them. Artistry has been drained from architecture.

    1. Jim Grey Avatar

      It certainly has.

  5. M.B. Henry Avatar

    My in-laws have a tin ceiling in their kitchen/dining room and it’s gorgeous.

    1. Jim Grey Avatar

      Oh wow, what a nice touch!

  6. Warren W Jenkins Avatar
    Warren W Jenkins

    Look forward to hearing about those old alignments; Owen County is about the only place in Indiana I got to explore when a brother was married in Freedom in 1994.
    BTW I’m a former member of American Road Forums from about 12 years ago, did a lot of National Road/US40 stuff in Maryland…

    1. Jim Grey Avatar

      I was on those forums at about the same time! We certainly crossed paths then.

  7. brandib1977 Avatar

    Man, nothing makes me happier than looking up and seeing this kind of ceiling. Nice find!

    1. Jim Grey Avatar

      I’ve never seen a new tin ceiling before!

      1. brandib1977 Avatar

        I have seen what appeared to be new tin twice. I also once read a magazine article pushing the concept for homes done in farmhouse decor and always wondered if the idea took off.

  8. J P Avatar

    I will join your tin ceiling fan club. It’s cool to find the real thing instead of the synthetic drop ceiling panels made to look like tin.

    1. Jim Grey Avatar

      I did not know there was such a thing!

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