WABASH, INDIANA --
In the quiet hours of the early morning, a man walks near the Oswalt-Thomas Sales & Service electronics and tire store on West Canal Street in downtown Wabash, Ind., on Thursday, Feb. 12, 2015. In 2007, one of the town's biggest employers -- GDX Automotive, which made sealing systems and glass encapsulation products for the auto industry -- closed, leaving hundreds of residents scrambling for work. Wabash, which currently has about 10,500 residents, is one of many small American towns trying to make a transition from an industrial past to a knowledge-based and creative economy.
CREDIT: Alyssa Schukar for The Wall Street Journal