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Posted May 22, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

I remember watching the news reports at the time. This was a very complex system that produced multiple tornadoes. It took me awhile to figure out what was going on.

Posted May 22, 2017, by mtygard

My Bad....My previous post was incorrect and you are correct!

Tumbleweed road was where the main Andover tornado crossed the Turnpike. The overpass tornado was an ancillary tornado from the Andover storm complex.

Posted May 22, 2017, by mtygard

My Bad....My previous post was incorrect and you are correct!

Tumbleweed road was where the main Andover tornado crossed the Turnpike. The overpass tornado was an ancillary tornado from the Andover storm complex.

Posted May 22, 2017, by John Marvig (marvigj27 [at] gmail [dot] com)

Looking for bridges with identical spans that may have been relocated here in 1951, and I came across this:

http://bridgehunter.com/ia/washington/bh55841/

Thoughts?

Posted May 19, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

Another possibility - perhaps the bridge might have been moved from Industry to Wakefield before 1908. That would explain the label on the postcard. This one is a mystery for now.

Posted May 19, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

I am suspecting that this bridge probably crossed Chapman Creek near the town of Industry, a short distance southwest of Wakefield. Historic aerials only goes back to 1964 for Industry.

Posted May 16, 2017, by Tony Dillon (spansaver [at] hotmail [dot] com)

We had a nice conference and tour up here a few years back that covered Southern Indiana Robert... But I would be open to another one featuring some Northern spans!

Posted May 16, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

That is my suspicion as well. If the towers have any structural function at all, then I would definitely call it a continuous truss, even if the spans could remain standing, albeit weakened a bit, without the towers.

As far as I can tell, the only way that the three spans could be 100% simple is if the towers are purely decorative.

This has been a really fun and enlightening discussion. I appreciate all who have participated. I think that we are starting to figure this bridge out.

Posted May 15, 2017, by Don Morrison

Also interesting is that the upper chords almost follow a catenary curve, giving it a suspension bridge look as well.

It must have been an experimental continuous truss.

Posted May 15, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

Also, I deleted the essay that I wrote years ago. It was out of date as many contributors on here have done some detective work with this bridge.

Posted May 15, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

A nice problem, eh? Of course, Indiana is blessed with the same problem. I hope to make a trip there someday. Conference in Indianapolis?

Posted May 15, 2017, by Tony Dillon (spansaver [at] hotmail [dot] com)

We would need a week or two... To even begin to cover Kansas!

...Eastern Kansas!

Posted May 15, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

Tony, it is funny that you mention of a through truss bracketed by Pony trusses and then connected by a couple of towers. I was thinking about what could happen if you could modify the nearby Careys Ford Bridge resemble something like this. Just don't forget to flip the endposts of the pony trusses upward to meet the towers.

http://bridgehunter.com/ks/miami/careys-ford/

I have not found any evidence that the Kansas City Bridge Company ever constructed anything else like this. I suspect that it was indeed a one-off design.

Thankfully this bridge did not get demolished when it was closed. I am pretty sure it was not yet on the national register when the closure a card so the fact this thing is still standing is a miracle. Not to mention that this bridge survived a devastating flood in 2007.

Hopefully you will get to see it someday. Maybe if one of these years we have a Bridgehunter conference in Kansas City, Saint Joseph, Springfield, Topeka, or Wichita, then we could include this bridge. Wouldn't it be nice if this one was actually restored by then. Everybody check your couch cushions for cash...

Posted May 15, 2017, by Tony Dillon (spansaver [at] hotmail [dot] com)

Exactly Don! I have never thought this was a cantilever structure either. I almost think it could be classified as a 3-span continuous truss. Think of a through truss bracketed with a pony on each end... But make them continuous. I'm not sure exactly what the designer was trying to accomplish here, and although we are fortunate to have this rare example... But it may have been a one-off thing.

Posted May 15, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

Interesting thought. Thus, if the spans are simple, and if the towers are largely decorative, those rivets I mentioned earlier would not have to bear any load stress.

Posted May 15, 2017, by Don Morrison

I guess I assumed the bridge might tend to sag slightly under a large load at center span. It is pin connected. This might put the tower top chords under tension. But overall, I think it operates as three separate spans.

Posted May 15, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

So, my comment from earlier today really did not break any new ground with respect to whether this bridge functions as a cantilever. We are all in agreement that it does not.

The only question left is whether the tower top chords relay any stresses from span to span. This will determine if the bridge is simple or continuous.

I still think that the answer lies in the tower top chords.

Posted May 15, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

I have spent some time looking at photographs of this bridge lately. Granted, I am not an engineer, nor do I play one on TV, but I have two theories about this bridge.

Theory #1: This bridge has no cantilever function at all.

Theory #2: The laced top-chords that radiate out from the towers are in compression, not in tension.

I will start by addressing Theory #1. This bridge, like (almost) all pin-connected truss bridges, features a pin at every connection on the top chord of the main span. If you look at the top of the endpost of the main span, you will see that there is a pin which secures four members together: the endpost, the top chord, the hip-vertical, and the diagonal member. There is nothing unusual here, save for the fact that the top chord is inverted. (Ie, making it look like a "Reverse Parker" instead of a standard Parker). In the case of this bridge, the hip vertical is a built-up member as opposed to being a simple eyebar, but this is probably beside the point when considering cantilever function.

You will notice that the built-up top chords that radiate off of the towers do not connect to the endpost/top chord pin. In other words, I am thinking that this bridge does not have the true hinge points that you would find on a cantilever bridge.

This brings me to Theory #2. Let me repeat myself by stating that those top chords that radiate off of the towers do not connect to any pins on the main span. Instead, they are simply riveted to the endpost of the main span. This makes me suspect that these members are in compression, and not in tension. Imagine if the main span were to be subject to a heavy load. Would those rivets that connect the tower top chord to the endpost be able to withstand any tension? Could they withstand any significant forces that were not absorbed by the endposts? I would have my doubts. On the other hand, I would theorize that those rivets would be sufficient to attach the tower top chord to the endpost if in fact those tower top chords are in compression, and not in tension.

The only other option is the idea that the towers are just decorative. In other words, they serve no other purpose than being glorified plaque holders, giving the bridge a bizarre appearance, and making bridgehunters go insane looking at the bridge in a futile attempt to make sense of it.

Now, giving credit where credit is due: If you have not visited Nathan Holth's page for this bridge at HistoricBridges.org, I strongly recommend that you look through his photographs and read his discussion. http://historicbridges.org/bridges/browser/?bridgebrowser=ka...

He has done a very thorough documentation of this bridge and his photographs have been extremely useful to me as I have been considering the function of this bridge.

Posted May 10, 2017, by John Marvig (marvigj27 [at] gmail [dot] com)

I can't imagine they would scrap an undamaged span, especially with the lack of major money which flows through these types of shortline railroads. It would be nice to get out here sometime soon and see if there is any remains.

Posted May 10, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

Well, that would be great. I have not heard anything about this bridge since the collapse.

Posted May 10, 2017, by John Marvig (marvigj27 [at] gmail [dot] com)

https://talk.newagtalk.com/forums/thread-view.asp?tid=600800...

Looks like one of the spans may have been salvageable?

Posted May 8, 2017, by Nathan Holth (webmaster [at] historicbridges [dot] org)

No its not my term, its an industry (and also brand name) term for this type of structure, used by bridge companies and DOTs. I believe Minnesota DOT had a piece on this type of bridge as it relates to historic bridges.

http://www.conteches.com/products/bridges-and-structures/pla...

https://www.armtec.com/product/multi-plate/

Posted May 8, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

Also, is corrugated multi plate a trademarked term? If historicbridges.org coined the term, I want to give proper credit if I create a category on here.

Posted May 8, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

Nathan:

I wondered about that. I had forgotten to comment on this one given all the attention focused on the Gilliece Bridge in Iowa and the flooding in Missouri and surrounding states. Thanks for the link.

Posted May 8, 2017, by Nathan Holth (webmaster [at] historicbridges [dot] org)

Date of construction and photos shown suggest this is not a stone arch bridge, but instead a corrugated metal plate type arch bridge. Such bridges were built during this period often with a stone facing. http://historicbridges.org/bridges/browser/?bridgebrowser=mi...

Posted May 4, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

That link also has a photograph of a lost railroad bridge at Skiddy. It had vertical endposts and bcc appeared to be made of wood.

Posted May 4, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

That was my guess. It sure looks like something that they would build. I would have to research further to know for sure, but MVB&I was my first thought.

Posted May 4, 2017, by Tony Dillon (spansaver [at] hotmail [dot] com)

Mo Valley Bridge & Iron span Robert?

Posted May 4, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

See the attached link for a photograph of this lost bridge. The location is approximate.

Posted April 30, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

Okay, I guess that answers my question about the NBI no longer inspecting the bridge.

At least as a private bridge, it is probably safe from demolition. Hopefully this will save it from the same fate as the Fall River Marsh arch that was demolished by Greenwood County a few years ago. I am glad that the landowner allowed you to visit the bridge. That is always an appreciated gesture.

I have known many trusses in Kansas to get transferred to private ownership, but this is the first time I have seen a Marsh arch go through the process.

Posted April 30, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

I have never tried camping in this area. There might be a KOA nearby. Pomona Lake has some campgrounds as does Melvern. Watch out for chiggers!

Posted April 30, 2017, by Anonymous

If you die, you get free lifetime camping at the nearby cemetery

Posted April 30, 2017, by JP Rogers (jp [dot] rogers [dot] mba [at] gmaill [dot] com)

Is there a public place to camp near here? Thank you.

Posted April 28, 2017, by Tony Dillon (spansaver [at] hotmail [dot] com)

Yes indeed... Looks to be integrated from the approach span right through the pony. Pony looks to be a Wrought Iron Bridge Co. product from 1880's-1890's. Very nice little bridge that I hope doesn't get trashed!

Posted April 28, 2017, by Tony Dillon (spansaver [at] hotmail [dot] com)

That is goofy... Hope it doesn't cause a problem!

Gonna have to start carrying a sledge hammer with you Nick...Bust up potential problems like this! ;-)

Posted April 27, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

Here is one of those paired angle ponies...this time in Queenpost form.

Posted April 27, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

That slippin' slab is one of the craziest superstructure failures I have seen in a long time! I am afraid that it might take out the lally columns and the whole bridge with it! I hope those lally columns are solid...

Posted April 27, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

Looks like it to me.

Posted April 27, 2017, by Clark Vance (cvance [at] dogmail [dot] com)

Hard to see in the photos. Are the stringers wood?

Posted April 27, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

Well, that is too bad, but it is his right as a property owner to keep people off his land. All you can do is say, "thanks anyway".

I completely understand how some property owners might have initial suspicions about Bridgehunters like us wanting to have a look at their bridge. My family owns land and we do occasionally get requests from people wanting to hunt, fish, or just go hiking. When you have land people will ask to visit and As a landowner, you have a right to approve or deny their request.

That being said, all privately owned bridges will someday collapse without maintenance. It might be a hundred years from now or it might be next week. Either way, a collapse always results in the loss of a historic bridge and an expensive and time-consuming environmental cleanup. What do you call a bridge that just collapsed? A dam! Every unstable bridge has the potential to become an unstable dam. As far as I'm concerned, preventing this problem is a no-brainer. This is especially true as many counties have pawned off these bridges as liabilities to the landowners. To me, it would make perfectly good sense to turn these liabilities into assets.

I always welcome any opportunity to work with a landowner to prevent his or her bridge from becoming a dam. But, if the landowner is not interested then that is their choice and I will always respect it.

Posted April 27, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

Sometimes, the NBI gets the location wrong. A couple years ago I imported a bridge from the NBI. Although that bridge is located in West Virginia, the NBI had the bridge located in China. I had to drag the pin halfway across the world!

On the other hand, this bridge appears to have been abandoned since at least 1990. It is truly amazing how quickly a road can go back to nature.

Posted April 27, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

This is a surprisingly significant bridge. It is an uncommon example of a 2 panel Pratt Truss.

It appears to be a product of the Wrought Iron Bridge Company. The bridge features those threaded rod connections on both the top chords and bottom chords where they meet the end posts. I would suspect that this bridge was built sometime between 1880 and 1890. From what I have observed, it appears to me that the Wrought Iron Bridge Company phased out those threaded Rod connections by about 1890. Of course other people have looked at more bridges than I have so if I am wrong about this I would certainly appreciate feedback.

The possibility of this bridge being rehabbed is almost too good to be true, but if Doniphan County is in fact repairing the bridge then they certainly deserve some major accolades for doing so.

If the bridge is scheduled to be replaced however, hopefully it could be preserved in place. If not, this bridge is so small that it could be moved very easily much like the knock-off "Waddell" Truss that is currently located in Troy.

Posted April 27, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

A construction date of 1940 is possible but I would agree that this could very likely be older than 1940. Most bridges that are as lightweight as this one do tend to be older than 1940.

This is one of several pony trusses in eastern Kansas and western Missouri that are composed of paired angles. This is a really nice example. I have a suspicion that the Wayland Bridge Company in Washington, Kansas built these bridges but I have not been able to confirm that for certain. In addition, I would not be entirely shocked if a few examples were to be discovered in Nebraska or even southwestern Iowa someday. I have not found any evidence that either Kansas or Missouri used these as any sort of state standard, so there is a possibility they could be found in a neighboring state even though that has not happened yet.

Perhaps even more interesting is the fact that whoever built these Bridges used several different configurations including the Parker, the Pratt (I think), the Warren, and the Queenpost.

Posted April 27, 2017, by Nick Schmiedeler

Contacted property owner about visiting this one, it was his thought that there is no need for anyone to ever visit or even know of its existence since it is on private property and should never be seen by others ever again...respecting his privacy of course but I bet this one is pretty special, satellite images show a neat little bridge

Posted April 27, 2017, by Nick Schmiedeler

Lots of backroad construction going on through this spot, there is no sign of a 2nd pony truss through this small stretch, or any trace of where another may have existed

Posted April 27, 2017, by Nick Schmiedeler

As of the day I visited, April 26th, 2017, this one was not open - but, and I could be wrong about this, it sure looks like it is going under some sort of rehab with new looking timbers making up the deck and new abutment reinforcements on both sides by either locals or the county, the road is public and open but the bridge is bypassed in a exaggerated loop to the west right now, need to return and take a look in a few months, neat old bridge, possibly loved more than many others that get ditched so easily anymore

Posted April 27, 2017, by Nick Schmiedeler

The soon-to-be-famous slippin' slab....

Posted April 27, 2017, by Nick Schmiedeler

Nice little shorty, still in good shape. Pretty spot - worth the visit.

Posted April 27, 2017, by Nick Schmiedeler

This one is gorgeous, sitting up very very high off the creek. Looks older than the 1940's date stated - amazing and impressive, especially underneath looking up.

Posted April 27, 2017, by Nick Schmiedeler

Pretty one. Several bridges in the area, first of the day. 90+ year old, timbers a little shakey but otherwise a neat elevated-pony over the low-water-level Stranger Creek

Posted April 20, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

The area around this bridge is receiving international attention. A recent discovery of a ca. 1601 cannonball has practically confirmed local suspicions that Arkansas City was built roughly on the site of a major Native American city known as Etzanoa.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4426312/Etzanoa-long...

Posted April 20, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

I had suspected that this was a possible location. Thanks for doing the research and getting confirmation.

This bridge is surely long gone, but I can't help but wonder if there might be some crumbling remains of the stone pylons hiding in the trees.

Posted April 19, 2017, by Anonymous

I looked at several old atlases 1885,1902,1919. The bridge was located on South 9th Street where it crosses Doyle Creek.(39.1900N,96.0799W) The creek is the old Kansas River channel. The river made a major course change between 1902 and 1919.

Posted April 16, 2017, by Kelly McClanahan

I have been tracing old rail lines, came across this one. One thing I have noticed, though there are a lot of "lost" rail road bridges out there. No since to list them all, but if I find a bridge intact, why not post it.

Posted April 16, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

Ammunition plant? Okay, that explains all of the fences and no trespassing signs...

Posted April 16, 2017, by Kelly McClanahan

Taking a look at the old Quadrangle map, it shows a rail line going over the bridge. Used to be a power plant there, most likely for the old Kansas Ammunition Plat to the west of there. Also, there is evidence that the line continued into the plant as well.

Posted April 12, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

This might not be the oldest, biggest, or most ornate truss in the world, but it is an unusual example of a 1940s truss bridge. The war effort required a lot of steel, and concrete was the material of choice for small bridges by this time.

Posted April 12, 2017, by Nick Schmiedeler

whoop!! make that a 28 ton.....

Posted April 12, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

Even if it is concrete with a stone veneer, it really does demonstrate the concept of making even a small rural bridge look attractive.

Posted April 12, 2017, by Nick Schmiedeler

Just a bit hearty, this one can handle a 52 ton double truck.....9' tall pony monster hiding a bit in Osage County. Too many bad spray paint tags on it, orherwise a strong and cool bridge.

Posted April 12, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

Not only is this a beauty, but it is also skewed. If this is a true stone arch (as opposed to a concrete bridge with done facing), then this skew factor greatly adds to its significance.

Posted April 12, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

I drove over this one several years ago. I forgot about the pony approach spans. This one would seem to be a prime candidate for preservation given its location. It is also a nice representative of a riveted Pratt that was constructed towards the end of the truss era.

Posted April 12, 2017, by Nick Schmiedeler

Another unbelievably well-maintained stone arch bridge find today. Sure looks like someone has been taking care of this one last few decades, encouraging to see it in such great shape especially at such a busy intersection.

Posted April 12, 2017, by Nick Schmiedeler

Wo, what a monster..... driving across this open bridge is very precarious, need to go very slow.... could see boards moving underneath my car tires. A gigantic beauty in Osage County on the curve, even better.

Posted April 12, 2017, by Nick Schmiedeler

Not sure this could be any more scenic, the bridge is over Fall River as it forms from the lake outlet on the dam and there is the state park camping area right next to the two unbelievably huge landmarks. Spent a good 40 minutes walking over the bridge and watching the water pour out of the dam, lots of campers at the park also enjoying the beautiful sites. Fantastic nearly-90 year old bridge, in fantastic shape.

Posted April 12, 2017, by Nick Schmiedeler

Wow a very pleasant surprise with this one, except for a number of stones missing on the very top, this one is still very tight fitting and great looking, possibly some rehab work done the last few decades. A real beauty.

Posted April 12, 2017, by Nick Schmiedeler

Cool !! Backwoods nature biker guy passing by told me water recently over top railing....wow. Neat little bridge tucked up close to lake, closed off to traffic for some time apparently.

Posted April 12, 2017, by Nick Schmiedeler

Dang. Aggravating. Might have missed this one today by just a few weeks. Gone now.

Posted April 12, 2017, by Nick Schmiedeler

Yes I would agree this is a very neat old bridge in a very pretty spot. Rehabbed over 50 years ago it is starting to show serious signs of wear including a couple holes in the cement deck itself, regardless, a cool old survivor given a little bit more time 5 decades ago

Posted April 10, 2017, by Nick Schmiedeler

Yes, that "touch-up" does seem to ruin about 1/3 of the aesthetic...would love to visit at a lower water-flow time, I imagine it's even more dramatic...not sure will ever make it back to this spot however, as mentioned, very rural and got one of those looks from a local in a truck passing by like "you have to be lost....need directions?".

Posted April 9, 2017, by Tony Dillon (spansaver [at] hotmail [dot] com)

Another example of why I wish road crews in counties with stone arches kept a Mason on the payroll! We have many nice ones in SE Indiana that have been devalued by a crappy concrete "Slop-job".

Posted April 9, 2017, by Tony Dillon (spansaver [at] hotmail [dot] com)

A really nice and rather long Warren pony. Here again we see the unusual center horizontal "member" that is likely just a low-budget guardrail... Or is it?

Posted April 9, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

Another great find! It does look rather remote. It is one of a very small number of historic bridges left in Woodson County.

Posted April 9, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

I am anonymous in the previous comment.

Posted April 9, 2017, by Anonymous

This is an interesting little bridge. I would guess that ca. 1915 - 1925 is a good rough estimate for a construction date.

It reminds me a bit of this one, only as a Warren instead of a modified Pratt.

http://bridgehunter.com/ks/franklin/301059004945/

Both of these bridges have a "railing" that is integrated into the verticals.

Posted April 9, 2017, by Nick Schmiedeler

Long haul to this one navigating many dead-end roads in the area, and got to travel through #1-voted KS ghost town - nearby Neosho Falls.....cute little double stone arch with high waters passing through at time of photo

Posted April 9, 2017, by Nick Schmiedeler

This one is in a beautiful spot, looks like locals may still use the bridge actually to get across and avoid the low water crossing during heavy rainfalls. Pretty solid design, concrete slab pony and abutments....neat and a little unusual

Posted April 7, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

This bridge gets a special mention in the initial Metal Truss Bridges of Kansas Multiple Property Listing. It would appear that this bridge at the time was erroneously considered a true Waddell Truss instead of a knock-off designed by a creative County Engineer.

http://kshs.org/resource/national_register/MPS/Metal_Truss_B...

Please note that some information in this listing is out of date now.

Posted April 7, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

The Walnut Creek Bridge was among the first metal truss bridges to be considered for NRHP listing as part of the Metal Truss Bridges of Kansas multiple listing in the 1980s. This initial listing considered the Walnut Creek Bridge to be a product of an in-state builder C.R. Lane. This may be technically correct as C.R. Lane was based in Topeka and appears to have been in charge of what was essentially the Topeka "branch office" of P.E. Lane.

According to the initial multiple property listing, C.R. Lane provided the iron for the dome of the Kansas Statehouse in Topeka. You can view the original multiple property listing here:

http://kshs.org/resource/national_register/MPS/Metal_Truss_B...

Please note that some information in this listing is out of date now.

Posted April 7, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

The Creamery Bridge was one of the first Marsh Arch bridges in Kansas to be considered for NRHP listing. This was done through a project to identify the most significant examples of Marsh Arch bridges in Kansas as of the year 1980. Although some highly important bridges were included, some other highly important bridges were left out. Some of them were added later, but others are still non-select. This PDF explains the process of how some bridges got selected in the 1980s.

http://kshs.org/resource/national_register/MPS/RainbowArchBr...

Posted April 6, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

I just added a PDF for the KHRI listing for this bridge. The KHRI has added some additional photographs in the last few days and has also listed a construction date of 1895.

The bridge is not currently considered NRHP eligible, but that decision was probably made back in the 1980s when iron bridges (Including Bellefontaine spans) were much more common than they are today.

Posted April 5, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

Good catch. I suspect that this is a plate girder, but I don't know for sure.

Posted April 5, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

Thanks for the information. I have often wondered how much debris remains in the river from those earlier spans.

Posted April 5, 2017, by Clark Vance (cvance [at] dogmail [dot] com)

The 1951 topo shows a rail spur running north from here to join the MoPac line running along the river.

Posted April 5, 2017, by Anonymous

In past years I did much research on the 1951 flood. The spans in the river were collapsed the evening of July 14th, 1951. This bridge was built in 1903 to replace a bridge that was completely destroyed in that flood. In fact, all bridges over the Kansas river were destroyed in the flood of 1903 with the exception of the 1900 built MoPac bridge in Kansas City, which still stands today and is in use. If you search historic images and special collections, aerial photographs exist of this bridge swamped in the July 14th flood waters with weighted railcars and locomotives parked on it in effort to weigh it down. The following morning, additional ones were taken and the center spans are missing. The paper in Topeka published an article too that day I'd read with photos detailing how this bridge and its companion AT&SF bridge downstream about a 1/2 mile both lost center spans and all the locomotives just hours apart when the water was at maximum discharge levels.

AT&SF pieced their bridge back together with different span types and one of them is clearly shorter as well. Rock Island rebuilt this bridge with identical spans (as you pointed out). Much like ATSF, RI left the damaged spans and submerged locomotives in the river where they still remain. The Kaw is also not classified as a "navigable waterway" by the Coast Guard so removing those spans would be a waste of money, and we all know that railroads don't like spending that. RI however did go a step ahead of ATSF, and installed a flood jack system (the sheds atop those arches) and reinforce the piers on this bridge in years after. Three bridges in KC (one also owned by RI at the time) also have a flood jack system that were installed after the 1951 flood. These were most recently used in the flood of 1993.

In closing, I've never seen any photos or info on this bridge's predecessor, but I can say that the spans in the river were built in 1903 with the bridge and not from an earlier one. If looked at in person (from Topeka Blvd) and google earth, it is clear they are Warren trusses as is the rest of the bridge. If I had to guess I'd say the first one was probably an old lattice truss similar to the 1899 Blue River bridge in Manhattan or perhaps even a wood pile structure. Whichever the case, the 1903 flood was much less severe in comparison to '51 or '93, so it was pretty weak to have been completely wiped out. Sorry to ramble on, wanted to share at least what I knew on the subject....... :-)

Posted April 5, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

After a careful review of aerial imagery, I still can't tell for sure what we have here. It appears to be roughly 50 - 60 feet in length, although it could be as long as 70 feet, depending on how much of it is hiding in the trees.

Posted April 5, 2017, by Tony Dillon (spansaver [at] hotmail [dot] com)

Comments on Pg.25 of the text. She mentions this one as well as another one that still stands...

http://bridgehunter.com/ks/butler/80865806307/

Posted April 5, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

As some of you might be aware, President Obama's Mother, Stanley Ann Dunham, grew up in Augusta and Wichita. There has been an oral history project underway to record the stories of those who were related to, or were friends with the family. This bridge gets mentioned in one of the interviews starting on page 25. Apparently it was a popular place for photographs - and perhaps a site where people have drowned.

http://obamakansasheritage.org/site/wp-content/uploads/2017/...

Posted April 3, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

One reason that I have been so focused on Kansas is because so many bridges have been hiding there. No doubt about it, Kansas is a bit of a time-consuming place to bridge hunt. Many of our bridges are in remote areas. The journey is always worth the mud march though, especially when a long abandoned truss comes into view.

Posted April 3, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

I have heard that there are no trees in Kansas. I have also heard that there are no historic bridges in Kansas. Either the trees are hiding behind the bridges, or the bridges are hiding behind the trees...

I lived in Kansas for years and still ended up making repeat trips to an area because bridges kept coming out of hiding. Don't feel bad for missing a bridge, it happens to all of us.

I even lived in Geary County and had no idea about what was hiding off of I 70...

Posted April 3, 2017, by Nick Schmiedeler

Wow.....had I been in phone-network signal range at that time I might've thought to look for these on this website, just means another road trip !! Never a problem!!

Posted April 3, 2017, by Nick Schmiedeler

Ran into this one by accident roaming Woodson Co. on Saturday. Drove past another few blocks to North at 220th Rd. also over Twiss Creek

Posted April 3, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

To make matters even more interesting, there is another bridge over Doyle Creek immediately South of this one.

http://bridgehunter.com/ks/marion/bh72959/

Posted April 3, 2017, by Nick Schmiedeler

That's great news. On closer inspection, didn't look to be on the verge of collapse really, but another swift flood, you just never know.....this one is really hidden back there, I stumbled upon it by complete accident, driving down the length of Main St. in Peabody, thought it may be a new unknown bridge, and only today thought to see if a listing might be on this site, which it was with no previous photo. Kings and Queens!!!

Posted April 3, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

WOW! (Okay, there I said it). Between the Hitchen Creek Bridge, the Cottonwood River Bridge, and this jewel, we seem to be experiencing Queenpost Week on Bridgehunter.

Don't let the diminutive size of this bridge fool you - this is a highly significant bridge. Kingpost and Queenpost pony trusses are becoming uncommon these days.

This Queenpost has some great features including latticed outriggers and fishbelly floor beams. This one could easily date from the 1880s. Even if it was built closer to 1900, it is still an important bridge. In truth, a construction date in the late 1870s is not completely out of the question. This bridge has been here for a long time!

Posted April 3, 2017, by Nick Schmiedeler

Hidden in trees, indeed. Some odd uprights on this ol shorty, decking a mess, abutments sketchy, beams laid across both entries are chained to the bridge itself to try and keep folks off, imagine more than a few curious kids in this sleepy town have navigated their way through the "protective barrier" and across....interesting old thing

Posted April 3, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

Well, if those northern lally columns give way, both spans are going into the river. I am pretty certain that this exactly how we lost both spans of the Columbia Bridge in Franklin Co. I am still kicking myself for not being proactive on that one.

http://bridgehunter.com/ks/franklin/bh36236/

Posted April 2, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

This one may have a few non standardized details. Look at the hip vertical - lower chord connection. It looks like there may be an unusual bracket of some sort on the top side of the lower chord. It is a bit hard to tell on my mobile device.

The hip verticals themselves are very lightweight.

I am still thinking 1880 - 1900. Does anyone think it is older? Newer? Any guesses concerning the builder?

Posted April 2, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

Well, first let me fulfill the prophecy of Anonymous...WOW!

Okay, that said, this is a fascinating bridge. It has some of the simplest portal bracing I have ever seen, although I have seen other bridges with roughly the same type.

In addition, the Queenpost pony has outriggers. I cannot tell for sure on my mobile device, but I they might be cruciform outriggers. If so, this could indicate a very old span.

This one could certainly date to the 1880s or 1890s. I suspect that it is pre - 1900 given its lightweight construction, short panels, uncommon portal bracing, and potential cruciform outriggers.

This is another one that merits a high priority for restoration. Nobody wins when a bridge collapses. When a bridge hits the water, it can be a devastating loss of history. It also makes for an expensive environmental cleanup. Now compare that mess with a beautifully restored truss. Which do you prefer? A good outcome is worth striving for.

Posted April 2, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

Yes, this one is definitely worth saving. There are very few Bellefontaine Bridge products left now. They are just as rare as P.E. Lane and CBW bridges, even though they tend to be a bit newer. This is a very important bridge and should be considered a high priority for restoration.