I want to see this giant someday, along with the Cairo bridges and the Caruthersville Bridge. I will also see the merging of the Ohio and Mississippi Rivers, and there is a old bridge at Metroplis, IL that sounds very interesting. I will also go to Lamberts Restaurant at Sikeston and eat like a pig there!!!!!!!I would guess it would take a earthquake of 9 or more on the Richter scale to knock the Thebes bridge down.
This youtube clip shows a little of the Thebes RR bridge.
I can photograph any part of this bridge, as I live very near it. Just drop me an email with your request.
It will take a lot more than a 100 year flood to take out one of America's most significant early large-scale cantilever truss bridges.
Very interesting bridge, indeed! I got to visit it back in December on my way home from Cape Girardeau. I hadn't been in Cape since the new bridge was built, and I was really hungry for Culver's and we don't have those here (but that's a different story), so I took off there one morning after work.
I didn't notice it at the time, but this bridge does have a rather unique arrangement of spans. Much like the main span of the Milton-Madison Bridge, the two large spans on either side of the middle span serve as double anchors, anchoring the fully-suspended span in the middle as well as a half-suspended span toward each end.
Thebes is a very geographically curious town. The former county seat of Alexander County, the old courthouse stands high above the old downtown on a bluff. The old downtown appears to have been destroyed at least twice since it was first laid out and currently consists of a mostly vacant grid of streets with a few houses, park land, and a municipal building. The long, straight, steep two-lane concrete highway that leads down to it is itself worth a few photographs. It's a true test of someone's vehicle, going either way.
I live just upstream of this brige, at Grays Point Missouri. Union Pacific uses the bridge presently. The bridge has been neglected over the last couple of decades with no new paint. It's rusty pretty much everywhere on the super structure.
I was in Thebes in March to visit family graves (Douglas, Lesar, Kelley, Rinehart), and I felt as if I had stepped back in time...except the beautiful Bridge and the Courthouse are the only remaining features of my grandparents' lives of so long ago. I have an OLD photo of Thebes before the Bridge was built...wow. I can understand how Thebes came to be defined by that Bridge and the RR. A haunting sight...
This bridge was actually seriously considered to host vehicular traffic as well as railroad traffic, instead of building the old Cape Girardeau bridge. But, it didn't go through and they ended up building an entirely seperate bridge.
This is absolutely my favorite bridge in the entire United States.
It seems to incorporate every kind of truss imaginable. I appreciate the pictures on it. Would love some closeups.
Someday, I hope to see it in person.
As the cub reporter fresh out of high school, I ended up writing an awful lot of obits for The Southeast Missourian.
One, in particular, stuck out in my mind. The singular most exciting thing in this woman's life was that she was on the first train to cross the Thebes RR bridge. I thought it was sad that that was the high point of her life.
What does it say about the arc of my life and career that I would remember that woman four decades later?
One night about nine years ago a friend and I had walked out on this bridge and were greeted by the Thebes cop when we walked back to my car. He threatend to arrest us but only gave us a ticket to appear in Alexander County court later that month. Anyway, we got out of going to court and I never tresspassed onto railroad property again. The Thebes bridge is massive and will last another 100 years!
I remember my family partying on a sandbar near this bridge quite a few years ago. My father and I walked by the river, underneath the bridge, and found a hammer which must have been lost during construction. I drove to Thebes today to visit my grandfather's grave, and went by the bridge. There wasn't a chance of me driving past the Union Pacific "no trespassing" signs, but that was close enough, anyway. Thank you for the pics!
Hello, I am a 29 year old female that was born and raised in Thebes IL. As a child , I loved to watch the trains pass by and I wondered where they were headed. I am surprised to see that the old bride is still standing. It looks really unsafe, and I was warned to never get too close when I was still living there. The photos brought back many memories of walking underneath the bridge toward Rock Springs. Thanks for the trip down memory lane!!!