In last night's season finale of True Detective, everyone's favorite grumbling sleuth duo paid a visit to the Fort Macomb Ruins, better known to fans of the show as the haunting city of Carcosa. SPOILERS ON!
In their climactic showdown with the Yellow King, ex-detectives Cohle and Hart follow their deranged quarry down the rabbit hole into some very disturbing brick ruins that the killer has dubbed, Carcosa. Despite being mocked up with all manner of disturbing stick formations and other horrific accouterment, the final scenes were actually shot on location in the ruins of a 19th century Louisiana fortress.
Built in 1822 to protect a waterway leading to the Gulf of Mexico, Fort Macomb (nee Fort Wood), was a sprawling brick structure composed of winding archways and small nooks. The low-lying fort was also covered in feet of deep turf, which has only become more overrun in the years since the site's abandonment, giving it the appearance of being built right into the earth. The fort never actually saw any military action during its lifetime and was eventually deserted, becoming property of the state of Louisiana.
The state has deemed the location closed to the public due to its structural instability, so the halls of Carcosa are generally silent. The site was also damaged during the multiple hurricanes that have ravaged New Orleans over the years and preservation attempts have met with limited success. However the Fort Macomb Ruins remain an atmospheric relic, perfectly suited to a backwoods delve into cosmic horror. So let's hope they don't fade into the darkness of time's flat circle.
To see more about the Fort Macomb Ruins and other real life locations that inspired horror and wonder, check out Atlas Obscura.