Rating:
13 votes

Republican River Pegram Truss Bridge

Photos 

Oblique view

Photo taken by Robert L Elder

BH Photo #103046

Map 

Facts 

Overview
Three-span through truss bridge over Republican River on 190th Road (RS 566), northeast of Concordia
Location
Cloud County, Kansas
Status
Open to traffic
History
Built 1893 by the Edge Moor Bridge Works of Wilmington, Delaware as a railroad bridge.
Builders
- Edge Moor Bridge Works of Wilmington, Delaware
- George Pegram of Council Bluffs, Iowa
Railroads
- Junction City & Fort Kearney Railroad (JC&FK)
- Union Pacific Railroad (UP)
Design
From East to West:
1 Riveted Lattice through truss
1 Seven panel, pin-connected Pegram through truss
1 Riveted Lattice through truss
Dimensions
Length of largest span: 200.0 ft.
Total length: 460.8 ft.
Deck width: 14.1 ft.
Vertical clearance above deck: 19.0 ft.
Recognition
Posted to the National Register of Historic Places
Also called
UP - Republican River Pegram Truss Bridge
Approximate latitude, longitude
+39.59606, -97.57119   (decimal degrees)
39°35'46" N, 97°34'16" W   (degrees°minutes'seconds")
Approximate UTM coordinates
14/622680/4383900 (zone/easting/northing)
Quadrangle map:
Rice
Average daily traffic (as of 2016)
50
Inventory numbers
KS 000000000150375 (Kansas local bridge number on the National Bridge Inventory)
BH 17601 (Bridgehunter.com ID)
Inspection report (as of August 2017)
Overall condition: Poor
Superstructure condition rating: Satisfactory (6 out of 9)
Substructure condition rating: Serious (3 out of 9)
Deck condition rating: Satisfactory (6 out of 9)
Sufficiency rating: 36.8 (out of 100)
View more at BridgeReports.com

Update Log 

  • January 6, 2020: New photos from John Marvig
  • August 22, 2017: New photos from Robert Elder
  • August 18, 2016: New Street View added by Dana and Kay Klein
  • December 1, 2014: New Street View added by Robert Elder
  • September 20, 2014: New Street View added by Ralph Demars
  • April 14, 2014: Updated by Luke Harden: Added category "Union Pacific Railroad"
  • November 27, 2010: New photos from Joe Underwood
  • November 16, 2010: Updated by Robert Elder: Added Junction City & Fort Kearney Railroad to Categories as it appears that they were the original users of this bridge.
  • June 23, 2010: Updated by Robert Elder: Edited History
  • March 4, 2010: Updated by Robert Elder: Made slight adjustment to GPS Coordinates
  • February 27, 2010: Updated by Robert Elder: Added Rail-to-Road to Categories.
  • December 22, 2009: Updated by Robert Elder: Edited Approach Design
  • November 24, 2008: New photos from Robert Elder
  • July 14, 2008: Updated by Robert Elder: Edited categories
  • October 2, 2006: Posted photos from Robert L Elder

Sources 

Comments 

Republican River Pegram Truss Bridge
Posted January 6, 2020, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

I have often suspected that this bridge might be an amalgamation of spans from various locations. One of the reasons I suspected that is, as John Marvig mentions, this fridge is set on timber pylons as opposed to stone pylons.

I would not necessarily expect the railroad to mix truss types here, especially if the crossing was going to be a frequently used permanent structure. I would think that a railroad would just build three lattice trusses and be done with it unless the Pegram, with its longer span, offered an advantage.

Now that John mentions the Nebraska structure having two Pegram trusses I would not be surprised if both of those trusses ended up in Kansas. The Minneapolis Pegram being one and this Pegram being the other.

Now, we might want to think in terms of large plate girder bridges along the main line that might have been lattice trusses at one time. Unlike the main line spans, the lattice truss is on this bridge have not had their portal bracing modified. The lattice truss in Lindsborg has not had its portal bracing modified either.

Republican River Pegram Truss Bridge
Posted January 6, 2020, by John Marvig (marvigj27 [at] gmail [dot] com)

I was fortunate to be able to visit this bridge on New Years. Like previous comments mention, the bridge does carry a good amount of traffic. Unfortunately, the bridge looks like it does need some significant work. The east abutment has begun to fail, as well and the east pier is in bad condition. All substructures are constructed of timber piles, a typical indication of a secondhand bridge shipped to a lightly used branch line. If this bridge is to survive for generations to come, all substructures likely need to be completely reconstructed, and a new deck should be added. Several holes were noted along the edges of the asphalt deck.

More curious is the history of this bridge. With the timber substructures and branch line status of this bridge, I have some doubts that this is the original location of the Pegram span. The other Pegram in Kansas is a 148' span, which is known to have come from this structure: http://bridgehunter.com/ne/platte/bh83549/

This structure is a 200', 9-panel span. The link above shows a 9-panel span, which I later confirmed to be 200 feet long. It seems probable that both these Pegrams may have originated from the Nebraska span. As for the end spans on this bridge, they feature designs seen in the early 20th Century. The members are more closely related to structures seen on the UP main line along I-70 in eastern Kansas, built in the first few years of the century. Older 19th century spans of this design have laced members, contrary to this bridge. It is unknown if the outer were constructed somewhere else originally, or if they are original to this spot.

Fortunately, there is a complete set of Union Pacific bridge records at the National Archives, which is likely to answer many of the questions about this structure.

Republican River Pegram Truss Bridge
Posted August 22, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

I field visited this bridge today. It was carrying a surprising amount of traffic.

Republican River Pegram Truss Bridge
Posted November 17, 2010, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

That link provides a great discussion of the Pegram Truss. It mentions a 148' span over the Solomon Branch near Minneapolis, KS. There is a Pegram in Minneapolis, but it crosses Pipe Creek immediately above its junction with the Solomon River. http://www.bridgehunter.com/ks/ottawa/minneapolis-rr/

An abandoned railroad line crossed the Solomon River a short distance west of Minneapolis, but Google Maps indicates that any bridge at that location has been removed http://maps.google.com/maps?t=h&ie=UTF8&ll=39.118832,-97.723...

Republican River Pegram Truss Bridge
Posted November 16, 2010, by Nathan Holth (form3 [at] historicbridges [dot] org)

The most detailed information I have found on Pegram truss bridges is on this National Register Nomination: http://www.historicbridges.org/utah/pegram/utahnomination.pd...

Republican River Pegram Truss Bridge
Posted November 16, 2010, by Craig Philpott (cphilpott [at] puc [dot] edu)

Very interesting bridge and design. I was just reading an undated wikipedia article on trusses. The article says (without reference) that there are only 10 Pegram trusses still standing and that most of them are in the state of Idaho. Go figure.

Republican River Pegram Truss Bridge
Posted May 24, 2010, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

I just realized that I have never uploaded pictures of the plaques that are mounted on this bridge. These photos are packed away somewhere.

I believe that there are two plaques on the main span. One identifies the builder as the Edge Moor Bridge Works and the other identifies the truss type as a Pegram truss.

Republican River Pegram Truss Bridge
Posted April 17, 2007, by Robert L. Elder (bass-tbn [at] ku [dot] edu)

Yeah, that would be great if you could upload pics of those trusses in Indiana and Ohio. It will be interesting to compare them.

Republican River Pegram Truss Bridge
Posted April 15, 2007, by Anthony Dillon (spansaver [at] hotmail [dot] com)

I was just reading where Indiana Bridge Company referred to their "Pegram" as a "high triangular truss. I'm not sure if there were any major differences in the two, but they look very similar. I'm hoping to visit the Peterson Ford bridge sometime this week, and will post some pictures if I do.

Republican River Pegram Truss Bridge
Posted April 14, 2007, by Anthony Dillon (spansaver [at] hotmail [dot] com)

Robert

Thanks for the info on the Pegram trusses. There are two bridges built by the Indiana Bridge Company that have a similar truss. One is in Preble County, OH (Seven Mile Creek Bridge)and was built in 1906. The Indiana bridge is the Peterson Ford Bridge over the Mississinewa River in Deleware County north of Muncie, and was built in 1902. While Ohio does call their bridge a Pegram, I have always just heard of our Indiana bridge referred to as a Polygonal-chord Warren Thru Truss. We also have a Triple Lattice (Fredricksburg Bridge) in Washington County,IN that is being moved to a park in Hamilton County, IN to be restored. These bridges were built for roadway use, where both of these truss types were more common on the railways.

Tony

Republican River Pegram Truss Bridge
Posted April 14, 2007, by Robert L. Elder (bass-tbn [at] ku [dot] edu)

I agree with Anthony that this is an impressive bridge. This bridge, the UP Crossing, the Salt Creek Bowstring Bridge, the County Line Bowstring Bridge, and the Rice Stone Arch Bridge are all located within about 5-6 miles of each other (as seen on the maps) and can conveniently be visited on one trip, road conditions permitting.

Republican River Pegram Truss Bridge
Posted April 14, 2007, by Robert L. Elder (Bass-tbn [at] ku [dot] edu)

This is one of at least two Pegram trusses that I am aware of in Kansas. The other is located in Minneapolis in Ottawa county, and is pictured on this site.

Republican River Pegram Truss Bridge
Posted April 12, 2007, by Anthony Dillon (spansaver [at] hotmail [dot] com)

WOW! This is a neat bridge! A Pegram sandwiched by a pair of triple-intersection lattices. Makes me want to go to Kansas.

Republican River Pegram Truss Bridge
Posted October 18, 2006, by Todd E. Frye (thefryeguy (at) yahooo (dot) com)

An unmentioned fact on this bridge is that it was originally a Union Pacific railroad bridge until the railroad was abandoned and removed in the 1930s. It's a very interesting bridge on a blacktop road and is also relatively close to KS Hwy 9.