The Baffler, “The Other American Frontier”

Exploring the Midwest’s forgotten utopian communes

By Evan Malmgren, April 18, 2022

MY AC WENT OUT in the middle of July in Loveland, Ohio. Luckily, the local Meineke was having a slow day.

I initially assumed my accumulator was leaking—a quick fix—but the mechanic unraveled a string of successive problems, each concealing the next. Behind a scrapped compressor was a broken high-pressure cut-off switch, and then a faulty pigtail. Each part took hours to arrive and only delivered knowledge of what we needed to wait for next.

Outside the Meinecke lobby window, four lanes of highway bisected a familiar sprawl: Menards, Office Depot, Dunkin’ Donuts, O’Reilly Auto Parts, Chase Bank. Suburban Cincinnati’s commercial jungle would never let on that the land beneath it had once supported an anarchist commune.

Read more

Written By
More from Agency