1 vote

Paper Mill Bridge



Beauty Shot

Photo taken by Julie Bowers

BH Photo #352486



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 Holt, Michigan
- King Iron Bridge Co. of Cleveland, Ohio [also known as King Bridge Co.]
- Schiffer Group Inc. of Traverse City, Michigan
- Workin' Bridges/NSRGA of Grinnell, Iowa
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
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 

  • 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 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.