Bridge is inside the des Plaines Wildlife and Water Preserve.
Photo taken by J.P. in October 2011
BH Photo #217590
Some info from the April 2009 Will County Historic Preservation Structural Survey...
Prior to the construction of the Joliet Arsenal in the early 1940s, this bridge apparently served as a road bridge for Blodget Road over the Grant Creek Cutoff. The road formerly followed a somewhat indirect path in this area, and the cutoff formed a north-south connection between the Des Plaines River in section 32 of Channahon Township and Kankakee River in section 5 of Wilmington Township. With the changes to the topography of this area as part of the development of the arsenal that impounded the Grant Creek Cutoff, the bridge was apparently relocated. It now has contemporary concrete abutments, and serves to carry an access road in the Des Plaines Conservation Area across the main channel of Grant Creek.
This bridge was very likely relocated from a spot hundreds of feet away, now replaced by a span of Blodgett Road pavement over the Grant Creek Cutoff. Beneath the new span are pipes permitting some water flow to continue to the Des Plaines River. Per my old friend, Bob Johnson, the replacement was done after too many 'ice out' repairs, the final straw being the ice jam destruction in 1985 (or was it 1986?). There was an identical bridge at Des Plaines River Road over the Grant Creek Cutoff. That was removed and replaced at the same time. I have an aerial photo of that one.
Was hoping to get more information from the state engineer about this bridge, and they have no historical data on this bridge.
A slam-dunk as far as I'm concerned with this being a WIBCo. span.
This very similar one I visited in Morrow County, Ohio a couple years ago dates to 1874:
truely a beautiful bridge
Thanks, I was just curious, trying to learn as much as possible as I go along.
Details that identify this bridge as a WIBC bridge include:
-Use of cast iron splice plate between end post and top chord beam.
-Threaded rod and nut connection for the diagonal member connection with the top of the end post.
-Threaded rod and nut connection for the bottom chord connection with the end post.
-Use of rolled Tees for built-up vertical members (as opposed to paired angles) and the use of one set of lattice between the tees.
While other bridge builders might have used one or two of these features, the use of all of these together make it nearly certain to be WIBC.
May I ask what stands out that makes this a Wrought Iron Bridge Company Bridge?
Looks like a relocated and very good unaltered example of a Wrought Iron Bridge Company bridge.