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Marshall Family Bridge


From Sept 18 2019 Cape Gazette article

Auburn Valley State Park has miles of accessible trails that include four historic bridges, built to provide new access across the scenic Red Clay Creek and to extend across the state line into Pennsylvania. SUBMITTED PHOTO

Photo uploaded by Art S.

View this photo at capegazette.com

BH Photo #456380


This bridge is a rehabilitation of the iron bowstring that fell into the river. The star iron was created and the vertical posts and outriggers still have the same design although they are new. The truss, cross members have been repaired, the bottom chord bars have been heat straightened and new parts cast for the connectors that were broken or missing. All care has been taken to preserve as much material as possible in this in-kind restoration by Nels Raynor and the Rivet Gang at BACH Steel. This prove a point that all of these methods for repair, when handled by a master craftsman and engineer, can restore these bridges. Or as Vern Mesler said in 2009, "Julie, you can fix this bridge even if it falls in the river!" We have, and it will be reset in the late summer / fall of 2016.


Bowstring through truss bridge over Red Clay Creek on Trail
Hockessin, New Castle County, Delaware
Open to pedestrians only
The bridge was swept off it's piers in 2009, a friends group was formed but the county voted against supporting TAP funding. Sold as a complete bridge to DNREC in June of 2015.
- BACH Steel of St. Johns, Michigan
- King Iron Bridge Co. of Cleveland, Ohio [also known as King Bridge Co.]
- Schiffer Group Inc. of Traverse City, Michigan
Bowstring through truss
Span length: 120.0 ft.
Total length: 120.0 ft.
Deck width: 14.0 ft.
Vertical clearance above deck: 14.0 ft.
Also called
McIntyre Bridge
Paper Mill Bridge
Approximate latitude, longitude
+39.80736, -75.67926   (decimal degrees)
39°48'27" N, 75°40'45" W   (degrees°minutes'seconds")
Approximate UTM coordinates
18/441855/4406597 (zone/easting/northing)
Quadrangle map:
Kennett Square
Inventory number
BH 71972 (Bridgehunter.com ID)

Update Log 

  • February 4, 2022: Updated by Nathan Holth: Renamed bridge to new official name given by DNREC.
  • September 19, 2019: New photo from Art Suckewer
  • December 13, 2018: Updated by Dana and Kay Klein: Added category "Othmar H. Ammann Nominee"
  • June 5, 2018: New photos from Julie Bowers
  • April 26, 2016: Added by Julie Bowers

Related Bridges 


Paper Mill Bridge
Posted September 19, 2019, by Art S. (asuckewer [at] knite [dot] com)

A bit of good news for aa change:

Congrats to Nels, Julie & Co.

Delaware parks division earns national innovation award

Cape Gazette September 18, 2019


Auburn Valley State Park has miles of accessible trails that include four historic bridges, built to provide new access across the scenic Red Clay Creek and to extend across the state line into Pennsylvania. SUBMITTED PHOTO

DNREC’s Division of Parks and Recreation has been selected to receive the National Association of State Park Directors President’s Award for Innovation at the annual conference in Rogers, Ark.

The award recognizes the establishment of a public-private partnership and efforts to convert the abandoned National Vulcanized Fiber plant into a destination where the public is able to re-create and enjoy preserved historic and cultural resources.

The NVF plant closed after the company declared bankruptcy in 2009, leaving behind hazardous and abandoned buildings as well as contaminated water and soil.

Around the same time, Delaware State Parks acquired 192 acres of conservation and cultural resource lands, including a historic mansion and the largest operational Stanley steam car collection in the country.

Delaware State Parks, in collaboration with state and federal agencies and private developers, was able to purchase and rehabilitate the abandoned NVF properties. They, along with the mansion and car collection, became Delaware’s newest state park, Auburn Valley State Park, which spans the historic Red Clay Valley.

The goals of the public-private partnership were to clean up the contaminated watershed, expand recreational opportunities, and create a vibrant and thriving community with residential, commercial and parks amenities. The finished park includes a restored stream and created wetlands to abate flooding and provide wildlife habitat. The stream was recently stocked with trout for the first time in decades. The project also created miles of accessible trails that include four historic bridges to provide new access across the scenic Red Clay Creek and extend across the state line into Pennsylvania.

“To be recognized by the NASPD as the most innovative state park in the nation is quite a high honor,” said Shawn M. Garvin, secretary of the Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control. “Nearly every DNREC division worked on this project, and I’m proud of the partnerships that collaborated to remediate the Yorklyn site into a vibrant new state park. We’re excited to offer improved outdoor recreational activities, while protecting and enhancing cultural and natural resources.”

Efforts to redevelop NVF are also creating a substantial economic impact. An economic analysis determined that upon buildout, activities at the site are expected to generate $4.5 million in revenue on-site and approximately $237,000 annually to the state park. Construction projects will generate 400 direct, indirect, and induced jobs, and 300 full- and part-time jobs will be created after construction is complete. Roughly $300 million in total economic output is expected in the first 10 years of operation with local tax impacts of $15 million.

The National Association of State Park Directors is devoted to helping state park systems effectively manage and administer their operations. The mission of the association is to promote and advance the state park systems of America for their own significance, as well as for their important contributions to the nation’s environment, heritage, health and economy.

Paper Mill Bridge
Posted July 20, 2018, by Julie Bowers (jbowerz1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

Paper Mill Bridge nearly decked and our part finished. Very grateful for Bach Steel.

Paper Mill Bridge
Posted June 5, 2018, by Jason Smith (flensburg [dot] bridgehunter [dot] av [at] googlemail [dot] com)

Summary of the restoration including much of the press release you can read here: https://bridgehunterschronicles.wordpress.com/2018/06/05/for... a real success story indeed! :-)

Paper Mill Bridge
Posted June 5, 2018, by Julie Bowers (jbowerz1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

How does one make the new pictures be the first picture? No need to keep the old location ones here now.

Here is video of the lift. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jdBYUPfEJAc&t=54s

Attachment #1 (application/pdf; 265,656 bytes)

Paper Mill Bridge
Posted June 1, 2018, by Julie Bowers (jbowerz1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

Finally we are SOBs. Here is the Paper Mill Bridge crossing Red Clay Creek.kudos to Bach Steel and Sciffer Engineering and DNREC

Paper Mill Bridge
Posted April 27, 2018, by Julie Bowers (jbowerz1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

The gang is here and parts are on site. Its tight but the BACH Steel Rivet Gang is on the job. Assembly and ready set go. The bridge that started this journey to preserve historic bridges wherever they have to go. Its a beatuful site on Red Clay Creek and a lot more people will be able to see and enjoy it. More on facebook at Workin' Bridges....bad reception out there so not much real timeinfo.

Paper Mill Bridge
Posted May 18, 2016, by Julie Bowers (jbowerz1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

Truss repairs continue and are nearly finished. Splice plates are drilled, the packed rust gone, and the new steel is melded into the old. By welding! Yes folks you can weld old iron.

I believe the plan is to erect it in the parking lot to get exact dimensions on the lateral and diagonal connects. Be cool to see those new vertical posts and outriggers doing their jobs.

If you want to hear more about this project and others, Nels talks about it at http://koolprojects.com/content/nels-raynor-bach-steel. He calls it his most challenging. Perhaps he wishes now he hadn't said it could be fixed, had he not, we would not be where we are now at Workin' Bridges.