1 vote

Shaytown Road Bridge



Photo taken by Dietrich Floeter, November 1995, for HAER

View photos at Library of Congress

BH Photo #120882


Pin-connected Warren through truss bridge over Thornapple River on Shaytown Road in Vermontville
Vermontville, Eaton County, Michigan
Dismantled and placed into storage
Future prospects
Available for reuse
Built 1913; repaired 1979
Single span, 6 panel, pin connected Warren through truss.

"The Shaytown Road Bridge is a Warren through truss structure. It is one of only two known structures of this type in Michigan. It is the only Warren truss in Michigan utilizing pin-connections, a method typically confined to Pratt trusses. It has been considered eligible for the National Register of Historic Places since 1992.

"HAER documentation was undertaken in November of 1995 in accordance with the Memorandum of Agreement agreed to by the Eaton County Road Commission and the Michigan State Historic Preservation Office. The Memorandum of Agreement is a mitigative measure used to maintain the bridge in a different location through a sale of a transfer to an interested party, if there is one, who would use and preserve the structure. This action was not successful. The bridge will be dismantled during the construction of its replacement."

Robert H. Scott, President
Scott Civil Engineering Company
Grand Rapids, Michigan


Length of largest span: 120.1 ft.
Total length: 124.0 ft.
Deck width: 16.1 ft.
Eligible for the National Register of Historic Places
Approximate latitude, longitude
+42.61940, -84.97580   (decimal degrees)
42°37'10" N, 84°58'33" W   (degrees°minutes'seconds")
Approximate UTM coordinates
16/666006/4720537 (zone/easting/northing)
Quadrangle map:
Average daily traffic (as of 1999)
Inventory numbers
MINBI 23314H00018B010 (Michigan bridge number on the National Bridge Inventory 2010 and before)
BH 37156 (Bridgehunter.com ID)
Inspection report (as of November 2012)
Overall condition: Poor
Superstructure condition rating: Poor (4 out of 9)
Substructure condition rating: Poor (4 out of 9)
Deck condition rating: Poor (4 out of 9)
Sufficiency rating: 41.6 (out of 100)
View more at BridgeReports.com

Update Log 

  • January 26, 2020: Updated by Mike Kerkau: Bridge has been linked to the incorrect NBI listings up to now; this has been fixed
  • April 29, 2011: Updated by Tony Dillon: Changed status-bridge is in storage
  • August 13, 2008: Added by J.R. Manning


  • J.R. Manning - thekitchenguy [at] sbcglobal [dot] net
  • HAER MI-105 - Shaytown Road Bridge
  • Tony Dillon - spansaver [at] hotmail [dot] com
  • Mike Kerkau - mjkerkau [at] gmail [dot] com


Shaytown Road Bridge
Posted January 26, 2020, by Mike Kerkau (mjkerkau [at] gmail [dot] com)

Is there any way to get that inspection info off the page? It's associated with a much smaller stringer bridge that was from 1903, not 1913.

The error probably happened because the NBI listings have had Shaytown Road entries for both Thornapple River and Thornapple Creek; the small stringer was over the creek.

Shaytown Road Bridge
Posted June 21, 2010, by J.P.

good to hear it's in storage, and up for reuse.

Shaytown Road Bridge
Posted June 14, 2010, by Anthony Dillon (spansaver [at] hotmail [dot] com)

It is good to know that Vern was able to procure this bridge. I had heard about it once in the past, but took it to be long gone.

Shaytown Road Bridge
Posted June 14, 2010, by Nathan Holth (form3 [at] historicbridges [dot] org)


Shaytown Road Bridge is in storage at Calhoun County, with a new bridge on-site at Shaytown Road. The truss was dismantled years ago, before I began my coverage of Michigan on HistoricBridges.org, so I don't have coverage of the bridge currently.

Plans are to erect Shaytown Road Bridge on the planned Historic Bridge Trail which will run from near the Historic Bridge Park all the way down to Homer, MI. The hope is that eventually, Historic Bridge Trail will feature eight historic truss bridges which are currently in storage at Calhoun County. Shaytown Road Bridge is along with Jones Road (a pin-connected Baltimore truss) two of the bridges we want to get erected on the trail first, given their rarity (they are the only examples of their type in Michigan).

As for the structure you see near to the former location of Shaytown Road Bridge, I believe that is an abandoned railroad bridge. I have not been back to it, but it looks like its probably just a plate girder. Michigan did not build many RR truss bridges.

Shaytown Road Bridge
Posted June 14, 2010, by J.P.

think this bridge was just moved. i was looking at google earth and just to the west of the bridge is a abandoned through truss. either this is a diffrent bridge which is possible since there looks to be a abandoned road or b this is the shaytown road bridge.