Newspaper reports state that two 40 foot spans collapsed on April 11th, 1945 due to floodwaters. These were on the Moncla side of the river as you approached the steel swing span. The bridge was never repaired. A ferry was used to cross until a newer bridge was built up river.
Did the first bridge fail, or was it replaced by the Long-Allen bridge that we used up until the 90s? I'd like to know more about this bridge.
Is there someone who can provide information on what is important about this bridge?
Kinda funny how the Google Earth streetview car crossed in the night time and the view is basically worthless.
NBI shows open in 2000, closed in 2004.
This was on the former Rock Island RR line that originally ran from Little Rock, AR to Winnfield, LA.
As you can see, the bridge is closed to all traffic. It is not intact, as the west end of the bridge collapsed. It appears to have been closed many years. Such a shame to see such a beautiful bridge go to waste.
Forgot to add This bridge was a narrow two lane bridge before rehabilitation work around 2007-2008.
This Bridge was originally the Leeville bridge from around 1945 and replaced by the Leeville lift bridge in 1970 and placed here in 1974-75. According to the Lafourche Parish Port Commission The bridge was condemned by the Louisiana DOTD Inspection. The bridge was removed during the week of March 3 through March 21, 2018.
there is bridge similar to this (on the same abandoned line) still standing across the Tchefuncte River. It's about 11.5 miles to the East. It can be seen from the US.190 bridge. It's not as long as the lost one, however.
Barking up the wrong tree.
The bridge either needs to be repaired or it needs to not be opened. Every other opening or so it gets stuck open and creates havoc on the residents due to traffic congestion. it is also opened at peak traffic times which makes the situation much worse for traffic. Someone will be in need of the ambulance one day while the damn thing is stuck open and they might not get the proper care in time. I see a lawsuit in the making. Fix the damn bridge.
NRHP Nomination plus 1979 State Survey form attached as single PDF here.
This bridge is located in Webster Parish, not Caddo.
My father, Frank Stout, was the Superintendent to build this Red River Bridge in 1959. During the construction of the new bridge, one span of the old bridge washed away and was temporarily fixed until the new bridge was completed.
This design is identical to the original Bonner St. bridge in Ruston, LA that was replaced in 2004.
Here is a modified satellite image that shows the most likely original highway/bridge alignment based on 1940s Parish and USGS maps. Concrete slabs and approaches are in red. The black lines represent the location of the steel bridge spans. The river was much narrower and approached the bridge at about 90 degrees when it was built between 1931 and 1934. The pier for the swing span still exists as well as a small concrete approach opposite the Moncla side of the river.
Roger that, David. I ride by this bridge somewhat frequently on my motorcycle, but I always pay more attention to the old railroad trestle right up the bayou ;) Wish I had pictures of it!
I wondered, but could find no info
I think the build date for this bridge is inaccurate, based on the design of the bridge, and the traffic estimate coming from before the "build date" of 1991. A bridge appears at this location on the 1949 topographical map, so I would assume this bridge is at least that old.
Thanks for the excellent new info and pic, James! Would you mind sharing how we can find images like what you posted, as well as the contract and construction info? I would love to do my own independent research on other bridges.
Specific to this bridge, we could narrow down the exact date of closing / abandonment to when the levee was constructed here, as the levee was plopped directly over old SR 20 / Highway 1. I imagine both the old route and current route were open concurrently at least until the levee was constructed, severing the route.
Probably never movable. The highway 515 bridge nearby is very close to the water and also appears to be fixed rather than movable. I doubt this bayou was navigable.
From the satelite view this appears to not headwind bridge. Was the swing bridge possibly replaced?
Wish I was closer and could check out this bridge! IDK if it is open or not; Historic Aerials seems to show it open in 1994. Hard to tell after that. Seems like an odd place to build a bridge in the 1960s, though I suppose I could see a need for a cut-across between 17 and 577.
According to https://books.google.com/books?id=8cs1AQAAMAAJ&q=Little+Rock... the construction on this bridge began in September 1904.
I saw this on a boat trip in October 2017. It appears to be abandoned and is swung open. There are still wires crossing it, and the telegraph poles are still there. It is near the chemical plant.
I would like to know when it was built and how long it has been abandoned. I hope they do not destroy it. If anyone has any additional information, please contact me.
I went through here on the river as it was being dismantled. It is sad to see these old truss bridges go away, as the new ones are so plain and boring.
I went over the Moncla Bridge many times. Just downriver, there are still concrete pilings visible from an even older bridge. The older bridge was built in the 1920s or 30s (possibly WPA, because I was told my grandfather worked on it) and collapsed during high water. There is still a road bed on the east side of the river going to the bank. The man who owns the property tells the story and heard that a car went off of the bridge when it fell. I'd like to know more about this, if anyone has information.
I am from Avoyelles Parish, and I have heard many stories from older folks about driving cars over this bridge before the LA 1 bridge was built. My father remembers having to fold in his truck mirror when meeting another truck on the bridge, as it was a narrow road set around the tracks.
albermarle52 - that railroad bridge is listed if you search for Krotz Springs, Louisiana.
Being from Louisiana, and spending much time on the waterways, I have seen these pipeline crossings many times. I always wondered if it was oil or natural gas that goes through these suspended pipelines. Also, why not bury them like many others? Scouring problems? It seems more expensive this way.
Thanks for the updates, Roger!
This bridge no longer operates because there's no gates and no traffic light.
Awesome. Thanks so much for the update! Glad to see a picture, as well! The through-trusses are dwindling in our state, so its good to see one extant and somewhat used.
Cliff, I just gave a shout out to the Tensas River NWR and talked to a gentleman named Brent. The bridge is indeed still extant and is used mainly for ATV traffic in the park. He said he's only been there for a couple years but some of the other employees have like 30 or more years tenure. He said he would talk to them and let me know any other info he can find.
Historic Aerials confirms this was on the Jefferson Highway, as you can clearly make out the old alignment that continued through Sparrow Lane's intersection with Kateland Road on the 1955 imagery.
Historic Aerials may be my favorite web page :)
I gotta say, I'm not sure this bridge is extant, much less open to traffic. Maybe a local will chime in, as this is a few hours north of me in Cenla.
Now I am even more intrigued by the abandoned bridge northwest of here on the old alignment of highway 1. Carnahan Creek is about as big as Bayou Jean de Jean and is a low area. The bridge is visible on Google Earth. Makes me wonder if it is also a deck truss.
Historic Aerials has a great image of this bridge in its prime in 1971.
Someone better versed in the Jefferson Highway please chime in. This bridge was built in 1931 on US 71 / SR 1, which was designated on the Jefferson Highway. Therefore, is this considered a part of the Jefferson Highway, or since it was built after the route was numbered, it is NOT part of the Jefferson Highway?
This bridge has been determined eligible for the National Register and is categorized in the state's Programmatic Agreement as a Preservation Candidate. More information is available here http://wwwsp.dotd.la.gov/Inside_LaDOTD/Divisions/Engineering...
i agree it is one of two swing bridges. i saw them both open when they moved the riverboat casinos here
very narrow bridge for todays vehicles
its definatly abandoned. ive lived there my whole life and never seen a train crossing it nor running on that same line through downtown
the dude who asked how far the water is from the deck is not bright because the water level changes
This bridge is the old New Orleans and North Eastern Railroad bridge. When it was originally constructed, it was unfilled. The bridge (as is) has had most of it's length filled. Originally, the total length of the bridge was approximately 21 miles in length (including approaches). Filling was completed in 1896, leaving the bridge as it is today.
Interesting if the date is accurate. State Route 14 was designated in the 20s, which was the predecessor to US 165. Which would mean this bridge predates the state highway, but likely carried the highway once it was designated. Would like to hear from locals on this one (as y'all are aware I'm fascinated with US 165 / SR 14)
Here's a link to a photo of the old bridge:
Any reason you visit here on May 10th?
I beg your pardon sir. Carl Allen, my grandfather's brother, was living in Elton, Louisiana at the time and to my knowledge never made a trip to the site. If he oversaw construction, he did so from a few hundred miles away.
My grandfather, his wife, my brother and I were living in Golden Meadow during construction, relocated there by HL Allen and Sons. My grandmother brought me often to the site where Edgar, called "the boss" by the crew, worked every day. I still have a small block of concrete cut from that bridge.
While a beautiful curved bridge, the Leeville Bridge was a b**** to cross!
Bridge is closed and being removed. I made a trip this way and this bridge was supposed to be the grand finale. I do have pics of two other of the remaining thru trusses up this way, though. I'll upload them shortly. When I get on my computer I'll update this bridge's status if nobody beats me to it
Will the bridge be open today for marine traffic
Just to let you know this is my work of mine!!!!!
I drove by the Valentine Bridge on April 15, 2017 and it was in the "open to marine traffic" position with the approach barricaded. Seems that it's closed indefinitely.
It's VHF channel 13
Good timing on getting those photos. I guess the wood pilings gave out. It looked like the steel was still good.
Moveable up; removable down. Or vice-versa.
How is one span "removable"? Curious how this works.
Based on historic aerials, I'm thinking this bridge was bypassed in 1955, but remained open for a time later. However I'm hesitant to change the information until a local chimes in.
There is at least one and likely two more similar, bypassed bridges a few miles north of this, but both are now blocked by private property or posted signs, at the least. Historic aerials confirms this, and current GE imagery shows that at least one is extant.
From reviewing historic aerials, I stand corrected RE: my previous comment. The abandoned bridge here served the Jefferson Highway, and the bridge was built BEFORE highway 71 was straightened in the late 1960s. Historic aerials shows both bridges extant in 1955.
From surveying historical aerials, I believe this bridge predates US 71 and was in fact part of the Jefferson Highway. The 1955 aerial shows the current bridge with a one lane road using this bridge. This would confirm a build date of the mid to late 1910s or very early 1920s.
Looking at historic aerials, this bridge was still in use in 1955, but by 1971 US 71 had clearly been rerouted and the old alignment abandoned. If the "new" bridge was built in 1969 I think it is safe to assume this bridge was bypassed and closed around this same time. The road bed had already been torn up in the 1971 aerial.
The flooding last year appears to have destroyed the western approach. I'll add photos when I have the chance later today.
Also, I think the coordinates are inaccurate for this former bridge. If you look at Google Earth, the old rail bed and the old piers are significantly north of where the marker is placed.
I noticed the sign.Drinking water protection area?The sign would make it obvious for a drunk who had to pee,wouldn't it?Just a little humor.
This bridge is no longer open. The best picture I have is a still from my dashcam, and unfortunately, I don't have any better detail, as I completely missed the existence of this bridge when I drove by it, and it wasn't until I was going through the dashcam footage that I saw a bridge on the map that I didn't immediately see in the video.
The "approach" to the bridge has been removed and grass now grows there, and there's a chain link fence barring access to the bridge.
Streetview imagery along LA-182 hasn't been updated in nearly 6 years.
Thanks Luke for the information.Settles that question.
Based on further research, there was a railroad swing bridge here belonging to the Texas & Pacific.
What threw me off is the use of multiple circular piers. Normally, only one is used on the swing span.
Sadly, the blogspot page this images comes from/the ones that show any info are invite-only.
Cliff,i think you are right.Just looked and saw 3 circular piers and 1 square pier in the Sugar Mill Chute.Good eye.Not dolphins that's for sure
Obank C.S. actually means Overbank Control Structure.
Was confused - had to research this.
I think those may be dolphins https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dolphin_(structure), not piers.
Sorry for no more pictures. Got caught by rain. Apparently an older bridge crossed here once upon a time. Check out the old piers.
...states that a wooden, hand cranked swing bridge was built at this location in 1941, and replaced by a pontoon bridge in the early 80s, which was in turn replaced with the current bridge around 2009.
Is this hand cranked operating bridge is the right location?
Couple more pics.
As is the case west at little river, the piers still exist in the river.
The piers still exist. Several bridges and small tressles exist along the grade all the way to feriday.
This was the bridge used in the final scene of the 2013 movie Homefront. The fence on the east side was added by the film crew.
Prior to the designation of Route 71 this may have been a part of the Jefferson Highway that preceded 71. A detailed map of the Jefferson Highway might show this. 492 was definitely a part of the Jefferson Highway.
What route did this bridge carry, then? I don't have good copies of the old state route maps. I just guessed US 71 based on the age.
The 1932 Boyce quad shows US 71 using the alignment of 492 to the NE. That alignment may have been created in 1926 when US 71 was established.
Both the topo and google agree that this is called Bayou Rigolette. I don't know where the NBI got Marteau.
Neat old bridge
Sorry for no more closer shots. Was running out of daylight far from home ;)
New ugly bridge is well on its way, though this old bridge is a bit scary with the lack of modern guardrails or curbs.
Likely another fine example of the original route of US 71.
What VHF channel or phone # do you use to open the bridge
& another from the same Employee's Bulletin. Bridge described as reinforced concrete connector of the Old Spanish Trail highway.
There is a very good description and photographic reproduction of the bridge's bascule section in the January 1917 issue of the Employees' Bulletin of Robert W. Hunt & Company, Engineers. [public domain].
Very neat. Been riding this area a lot lately but didn't know this existed. Curious as to the history of this bridge. Was this an old alignment of US71 or LA8?
Bridge no longer exists. Not sure if the major flooding back in April took it out or what, but the only remains are the supports. The entire deck is gone, but the pilots still are full height. Which makes me think the bridge was a victim of the record floods. I have a photo but my silly motorcycle is in the way ;)
"Chef Menteur," which is part of the place-name for several geographic features in the Orleans Parish area including this bridge, is a French phrase that translates to "Lying Chief." This is commonly understood to derive from the Choctaw phrase of the same meaning, "oulabe mingo." This was NOT a nice phrase with the Choctaw, who were famed for hating liars. Depending on your historical source, this appellation was given to former French Colonial Governor Louis Belcourt, Chevalier de Kerlerec after violating a treaty with them; the Mississippi River, whose path through the Delta Region was notoriously untrustworthy before the levees were built; or a deposed Choctaw Chief whose other names are lost to history. This possibly mythical "Chef Menteur" was exiled by the Choctaw to what is now known as the Point aux Herbes" area of the shore of Lake Pontchartrain.
I grew up in Port Huron Michigan and the boats used to just blast their horn to get the bridgetender's attention! As long as it was on the half hour or hour the tender would lift the bridge.
If you have concerns that the operation of the bridge is not being conducted correctly, I suspect you would want to contact the Coast Guard as they should have enforcement jurisdiction in this matter.
To whom it may concern,
We come through here pretty often an it never fails we have to call for 20 min. On top of getting other bridges to call their phone an still get no answer. They need to work on answering their radio more an quicker
Actually it was replaced in 1995. In 1975, a parallel prestressed stringer bridge was built for westbound traffic, creating two lanes for each direction.
possibly this bridge was designed by Ben L. Goepfert, P.E. for Shell Oil Company, based on information provided by another Shell engineer. Mr. Goepfert, my father-in-law, enjoyed a lengthy career with Shell, from the early 1950's to 1980's.
thanks for the posting and any additional information.
Big Choctaw Bayou is in Tensas Parish but I don't find any ID for the rails in the area.
I'm trying to figure out where this lift bridge at if it's removed or still in operation here is the actual pictures from bridge engineering book from JAL Waddell