They are architectural gems, many of them more than a century old, with fascinating histories.
Scavengers are wreaking havoc for a small treasure of scrap metal.
All houses and buildings started with a $500 bid. There were bargains, surprises and duds.
Up for bid: Beautiful colonial homes, abandoned factories, gas stations, churches, a hospital, countless boarded-up bungalows and ornate apartment buildings.
Who are the scrappers? They are laid-off autoworkers, drug addicts, high school dropouts and others trying to get by.
From manhole covers to ornate copper roofs, thieves are leaving nothing untouched to cash in on historically high metal prices.