Approximately 30 yards on the north side of this bridge is a beautiful pony plate girder bridge that crosses over the Petit Jean River Relief. The big bridge is now blocked off on the south side (Danville side) to keep railroad cars off the bridge that is now showing bad need of repair.
nice new pictures Randall....love this old train bridge.
The Railroad cars are now moved off the bridge, a friend of mine took some new great photos of the bridge this week and she is awaiting approval on here to post them, Go Edie!!
I took a trip to see the bridge today. To my surprise, the cars on the bridge are no longer there.
Those cars on the bridge were left there at the end of summer of 1985. During that summer, they officially closed the railroad west of Danville including this bridge. The cars left on the brige were in need of repair and it was not feasible to repair them. It was simpler just to leave them on the bridge, likewise it would help prevent people from vandalism. I was able to get this information from a gentleman that worked for Rock Island for 30+ years.
I just looked this bridge up on Google Earth, and although the tracks on the south side of the bridge are clearly active about half a mile from the bridge, on the north side the tracks are missing, and about 2 miles or so north of the bridge, the Danville Municipal Airport's runway occupies the Right of Way.
Those railroad cars have been on that bridge for quite a while, maybe even decades. I am assuming they were left there to prevent people walking out on the bridge.
The rail line appears to be abandoned on the north side of this bridge, in fact I don't think the rails extend much beyond the bridge, but on the east side, going east there appears to be some recent traffic, maybe a little.
Visited this bridge at 4:30 pm on 11 Nov. 2006. Had trouble locating this bridge as it is not visible from a road. I even asked the gate watchman at the Petit Jean Poultry truck yard for directions, but he didn't know about it even though its only about 1/4 mile behind their facility. I took a side road and parked at a maintenance yard at a RR crossing and walked about 1/2 mile down the tracks to the bridge. About 10 box cars are static on the bridge making it awkward to get around. They occupy 90% of the bridge. Had to carefully walk on laced girder. Getting pictures was exceedingly difficult because of all the understory growth.
Webmaster's note: The photos that were here have been incorporated into the main site.