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Tod Ranch Road Bridge

Photos 

Photo taken by Nick Schmiedeler in February 2017

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BH Photo #379897

Map 

Description 

This bridge is on private property. As a courtesy to the owner, please do not visit without permission. Landowner information will not be disseminated through this website.

Bridge was likely built as an Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe Bridge in 1887 near Guthrie, Oklahoma. As told, the previous ranch owner and his friend drove past the replacement of the structure. His friend made a joke about buying the bridge, and ranch owner went through on it. It was shipped to Maple Hill via railroad in 1950 and reassembled at this location.

Facts 

Overview
Pratt through truss bridge over Mill Creek on Tod Ranch Road
Location
Wabaunsee County, Kansas
Status
Open to traffic
History
Built 1887 as a Railroad Bridge, Moved Here by Private Party 1950
Builder
- Missouri Valley Bridge & Iron Works of Leavenworth, Kansas
Railroads
- Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe Railway (ATSF)
- Rail-to-road
Design
Pratt through truss
Dimensions
Span length: 140.0 ft.
Total length: 140.0 ft.
Approximate latitude, longitude
+39.06840, -96.01420   (decimal degrees)
39°04'06" N, 96°00'51" W   (degrees°minutes'seconds")
Approximate UTM coordinates
14/758320/4328610 (zone/easting/northing)
Land survey
T. 11 S., R. 13 E., Sec. 30
Inventory number
BH 74024 (Bridgehunter.com ID)

Update Log 

  • March 10, 2017: New photos from John Marvig
  • February 22, 2017: New photos from Nick Schmiedeler
  • October 6, 2016: Added by J.P.

Related Bridges 

Sources 

Comments 

Tod Ranch Road Bridge
Posted March 4, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

That is interesting. An 1880s pin connected truss might be a rarity in Oklahoma, which is known more for its large and impressive 20th Century trusses. That being said, I have always suspected that the oldest truss bridges in Oklahoma would be on railroads.

Wes and Gene, are both of you still on here?

Tod Ranch Road Bridge
Posted March 4, 2017, by Luke

Message via John: Bridge was relocated from Oklahoma per landowner.

Tod Ranch Road Bridge
Posted February 23, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

When I saw photos of the plaque, I figured that the Missouri Valley Bridge & Iron Works built this one in accordance with a railroad company design. Generally speaking, MVB&IW would have otherwise used angled lattice portal bracing at this time.

Tod Ranch Road Bridge
Posted February 23, 2017, by Nick Schmiedeler

John - followed regular street signs from the west and north all the way to the bridge, unless I missed something, it was at that point it became very obvious to step on or cross the bridge was private property.....did not meet folks on private side. Just so I'm understanding everyone read what was actually on the plaque - I posted 2 photos, one with effects, to make it easier to read "MO _____ BRIDGE & IRON WORKS, A. J. TULLOCK & CO. PROPRIETORS, LEAVENWORTH, KANSAS 1887

Tod Ranch Road Bridge
Posted February 22, 2017, by John Marvig

Nick,

Were the landowners friendly and welcoming to the bridge? And I recognize the portals, looks quite a bit like Missouri Pacific trusses.

Tod Ranch Road Bridge
Posted February 22, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

Nathan:

I think that we were posting at the same time. I made my first comment before Nick had uploaded a photograph of the plaque.

Tod Ranch Road Bridge
Posted February 22, 2017, by Nathan Holth (webmaster [at] historicbridges [dot] org)

Maybe some people don't know, A. J. Tullock was a founder of that company. He died, and it reorganized into Missouri Valley Bridge and Iron Company in 1904.

Tod Ranch Road Bridge
Posted February 22, 2017, by Nathan Holth (webmaster [at] historicbridges [dot] org)

It has a Missouri Valley Bridge and Iron Works plaque on it. Nice, although sad the top part is broken. Very nice example of an 1880s railroad truss.

Tod Ranch Road Bridge
Posted February 22, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

Okay, Missouri Valley Bridge & Iron Works. This firm built quite a few bridges in Missouri and Kansas although they did venture as far as Texas. To the best of my knowledge, they never built any bridges east of the Mississippi. Thus, this bridge probably came from somewhere in the local region as opposed to being moved from somewhere like Ohio or Pennsylvania.

This bridge is also significant as having been built before the company changed its name to the Missouri Valley Bridge & Iron Company.

Too bad the plaque is damaged, but at least most of it is still intact so we can get some important information off of it. Cast iron components can be very pretty but they are also prone to shattering.

Tod Ranch Road Bridge
Posted February 22, 2017, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

Interesting bridge with unusual portal bracing and away bracing. Does anybody recognize these features?

Tod Ranch Road Bridge
Posted February 22, 2017, by Nick Schmiedeler

Fairly obvious an old train bridge, 1887 in fact according to the plaque, would agree that it's most likely been moved to this spot as the private property on the east side shoots up a steep incline very close to the bridge. Very cool, very hearty.

Tod Ranch Road Bridge
Posted December 3, 2016, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

I can't find a specific date on the 1951 imagery. But, as Luke mentioned, the bridge was very clearly installed after 1948. If it was installed after the flood, it must have been done very quickly.

Tod Ranch Road Bridge
Posted December 3, 2016, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

I wondered about that. One would need to know the date of the 1951 aerial imagery (before or after the flood). I will check on the computer.

Tod Ranch Road Bridge
Posted December 2, 2016, by John Marvig (marvigj27 [at] gmail [dot] com)

Could possibly have been a span at one of the bridges at Topeka that got hit hard with flooding?

Tod Ranch Road Bridge
Posted December 2, 2016, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

Good catch. I suspect that the bridge was moved here from an unknown location. I doubt that a bridge of this type would have been built ca.1950.

On an unrelated note (well, probably unrelated), 1951 was a significant year for bridges in this area due to the flooding that occurred that year.

Tod Ranch Road Bridge
Posted December 2, 2016, by Luke

Looking at the spot using historicaerials, it very well could be a railroad bridge, because the bridge isn't at the spot in the earliest aerial view (1948) but appears in the next available set of aerial imagery (1951)

Tod Ranch Road Bridge
Posted December 2, 2016, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

This one almost looks like an old railroad bridge from aerial imagery, but of course, I cannot tell for certain. That being said, unless my eyes are playing tricks on me, the panels appear to be roughly 22 feet long, which is impressive for an older bridge.

Overall, the bridge looks like it may be a 7 panel bridge, with a length of at least 150 feet. Naturally, 7 panels at 22 feet each would equal a 154 foot span. This would seem reasonalble given the fact that Mill Creek is practically a small river at this point. That is as much as I can tell without a field visit.

I would like to ask permission to visit, but I probably won't be in the area for a few months at least.