Rating:
3 votes

Scripture's Bridge

Photo 

Early postcard image

Enlarge

BH Photo #398995

Map 

Description 

This was the first span to cross Sand Creek at this rocky, deeply entrenched location known as Scripture Ford. The bridge was likely part of an early road from Westport to Greensburg, and Mr. Scripture was the landowner. The very tall and impressive cut stone abutments had to have been quite an undertaking, but they were money well spent as they served not only this bridge but it's replacement in 1933. The Berlin Iron Bridge Company of East Berlin, Connecticut was the exclusive builder of the Lenticular Truss design. The stone substructure cost $8545.40 and was completed in early September of 1883. The superstructure was completed in October and $1567.10 was paid for it. The approaches and fill weren't completed until the following year and cost another $1850.00.

Credit goes to Jonathan Parrish for finding this incredible old image online!

Facts 

Overview
Lost Lenticular through truss bridge over Sand Creek on County Road 1000 South
Location
Decatur County, Indiana
Status
Replaced by a new bridge
History
Built in 1883 by the Berlin Iron Bridge Company; Replaced in 1933
Builders
- Berlin Iron Bridge Co. of East Berlin, Connecticut (Fabrication & Erection)
- David A. Tucker (Construction Superintendent)
- Smith and Erastus Bussell (Stone substructure)
Design
8-panel pinned, Lenticular through truss
Dimensions
Total length: 104.0 ft.
Also called
Scripture Ford Bridge
Tucker Bridge
Approximate latitude, longitude
+39.19069, -85.53846   (decimal degrees)
39°11'26" N, 85°32'18" W   (degrees°minutes'seconds")
Approximate UTM coordinates
16/626219/4338955 (zone/easting/northing)
Land survey
T. 9 N., R. 9 E., Sec. 29
Inventory number
BH 78053 (Bridgehunter.com ID)

Update Log 

  • August 3, 2017: Updated by Tony Dillon: Added new information per research by Jim Cooper.
  • August 2, 2017: Added by Tony Dillon

Related Bridges 

Sources 

Comments 

Scripture's Bridge
Posted August 3, 2017, by Tony Dillon (spansaver [at] hotmail [dot] com)

Thank you Michael!

I added additional information today provided to me by Professor Jim Cooper who had done extensive research of records in most Indiana Counties. Needless to say he was delighted to see a photo of the bridge and know that at least 1 Lenticular truss was indeed constructed in the Hoosier State!It was built in 1883 and no surprise that Berlin IBC was the builder. Those massive abutments cost about 5 times as much as the superstructure, But they lasted until the replacement bridge was raised in 2000! And it looks like in current satellite imagery that part of the larger West abutment might still remain today.

I had actually been looking for a Lenticular that I was told existed in nearby Shelby County, but so far have found that many of the earlier bridges there were Bowstrings. But hey... you never know, another one may show up some day!

Scripture's Bridge
Posted August 3, 2017, by Michael Quiet (mquiet [at] gmail [dot] com)

This is an incredible find, thank you Tony! In all my research on Berlin Iron Bridge Co. I've never found any indication that anything had been built farther west then Ohio (Excepting Texas of course).

We can spot a few unique design details here: The compression members are rolled, not built up, and we can see that the endpost in built up with battens. Its remarkably similar to this extant one in NY:

http://bridgehunter.com/ny/jefferson/old-elm-ridge-road/