1 vote

Wamego Bridge



Old postcard image pulled off the net.

Photo taken by Nick Schmiedeler


BH Photo #367156


Street View 


Lost Marsh arch bridge over Kansas River on K-99 in Wamego
Wamego, Pottawatomie County, Kansas, and Wabaunsee County, Kansas
Replaced by new bridge
Built 1927-9; Replaced 1990
- Wamego Sand Co. of Wamego, Kansas
Seven span Marsh through arch.
Also called
Kansas River Bridge
Approximate latitude, longitude
+39.19794, -96.30539   (decimal degrees)
39°11'53" N, 96°18'19" W   (degrees°minutes'seconds")
Approximate UTM coordinates
14/732696/4342202 (zone/easting/northing)
Quadrangle map:
Inventory number
BH 39834 (Bridgehunter.com ID)

Update Log 

  • October 8, 2019: New photo from Melissa Brand-Welch
  • January 8, 2018: New photo from Nick Schmiedeler
  • October 22, 2017: Updated by Luke: Added builder & date
  • October 22, 2017: New photo from Nick Schmiedeler
  • October 12, 2016: New photos from Nick Schmiedeler
  • March 31, 2010: Updated by Robert Elder: Added street view link. Remants can be seen behind the shed.
  • February 11, 2009: Added by Robert Elder

Related Bridges 



Wamego Bridge
Posted January 8, 2018, by Luke

I agree that the entries should be split. And the date is 1872, replacing a ferry that ran from 1866 until then.

Haven't found anything in Google Books about a contractor yet, but at least it gives us the info that the bowstring was the first bridge at the location.

Wamego Bridge
Posted January 8, 2018, by Anonymous

I think the bowstring should be a separate entry from the marsh arch.

Wamego Bridge
Posted January 8, 2018, by Nick Schmiedeler (nick [at] nickschmiedeler [dot] com)

Wait....think it says bowstring built 1872 or 1873...wow...new photo found and posted of 1903 floodwaters up to decking

Wamego Bridge
Posted January 8, 2018, by Nick Schmiedeler (nick [at] nickschmiedeler [dot] com)

For some reason just now realizing that I have posted photos of 2 different bridges most likely in the same spot in Wamego over the decades, the earlier 1 being the multi span bowstring bridge (b. 1878 I believe caption in photo of office photo), then also photos of the replacement which became a multi span Marsh arch (b. 1929), apologies for mix up... possible new listing needed for original bowstring bridge?

Wamego Bridge
Posted October 22, 2017, by Tony Dillon (spansaver [at] hotmail [dot] com)

Interesting that a copy of it migrated East to the Hoosier State! Not sure when I'll be in that part of Indy again, but I'll keep it in mind!

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

I would like to second all of Luke's statements. Nick and David have made some outstanding contributions to this website. Many of the bridges they have visited are in very remote areas and they are hard for a lot of people to access.

I wish I could spend more time out in the field. There are some good bridges here in Texas where I live now but very few of them are close to where I live.

I think they're growing up in Kansas probably had a big impact on me developing an interest in historic bridges. I knew there were few bridges there hiding in the tree and every now and then I would discover one of them. Nick now understands that feeling very well I am sure.

Wamego Bridge
Posted October 22, 2017, by Luke

No problem Nick, thank you for all the groundwork you do, as Kansas is an under-appreciated state on this site.

And on the same note, I think we all also owe David Jones thanks for the work he's done in Montana, another state with a lot of historic bridges, but few contributors to do field checks.

Wamego Bridge
Posted October 22, 2017, by Nick Schmiedeler

Very cool Luke thank you very much I'm down that way often to visit my boy at Pittsburg state and also to see that awesome old Verdigris bridge in Independence, I will stop by that library

Wamego Bridge
Posted October 22, 2017, by Luke

If you're anywhere near Independence, Nick,the Mid-Continent Public Library has a copy of a book that talks about the bridge when it was new.

(If Tony feels like visiting the Indiana State Library, they've got it too.)



Wamego Bridge
Posted October 22, 2017, by Nick Schmiedeler

Love to know the exact story on this little nicely-packaged piece of history - found at yard sale, yesterday (!!!) - some sort of local Pottawatomie Co. KS fundraising event after the bridge's dismantling in 1990? Ha - love this thing

Wamego Bridge
Posted April 1, 2010, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

Another thought that I should add is the criteria of "preservation potential" was one of the factors. In other words, a bridge was more likely to be preserved if it could be bypassed easily.

Wamego Bridge
Posted March 31, 2010, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

I have puzzled over that ridiculous decision for years. I suspect that Marsh Arches were probably considered common technology as there were about 76 of them in Kansas at one time.

Listing on the NRHP has been somewhat random for Kansas bridges. For example, the Creamery Bridge in Miami County qualifies: http://www.bridgehunter.com/ks/miami/creamery/ but the equally important and very similar Coffeyville Bridge in Montgomery County remains largely unknown http://www.bridgehunter.com/ks/montgomery/coffeyville/

Given the rarity of Marsh Arch Briges, the loss of any of them is a significant loss of an important part of our engineering heritage.

Even the John Mack Bridge in Wichita http://www.bridgehunter.com/ks/sedgwick/broadway/

was not considered eligible until 1992 and would have been demolished if locals had not protested.

Wamego Bridge
Posted March 31, 2010, by Nathan Holth (form3 [at] historicbridges [dot] org)

A six? span Marsh Arch bridge not being considered NR eligible?! Even if it was 1990, whoever made that decision was insane and should have been put in a padded cell.

Wamego Bridge
Posted March 31, 2010, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

KSHS page with photograph:


This bridge was not considered eligible for the NRHP despite being a multi-span Marsh Arch.