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Posted June 5, 2018, by Jeff Routson (jroutson&hardestyhanover [dot] com)

The design of the Fort Street Bridge was directed by the Okemos, MI office of Hardesty & Hanover.

A Scherzer type bascule is not at all uncommon for 2015. At least 5 have been completed since 2010.

Posted May 29, 2018, by Mike Kerkau (mjkerkau [at] gmail [dot] com)

I'm guessing that this is what whomever posted this had in mind:

Note the pedestrian truss bridge next to it. The picture right before that has more of a street-level view - compare that picture to how the area looks now on Google StreetView, and my bet would be that both bridges were removed when they filled the area in.

Posted May 27, 2018, by Dave King (DKinghawkfan [at] hotmail [dot] com)

The bridge with wooden railings you are referring to is nothing notable. It's a steel stringer built in 1980.

Posted May 26, 2018, by Mike Kerkau (mjkerkau [at] gmail [dot] com)

Well, if we weren't convinced that it was gone before - what I've just uploaded should do the trick.

I elected to take this side trip on my way home from visiting one of my cousins who lives up by Pinconning. I was surprised, because I thought I'd be able to get closer on the west side (turning off Garfield) rather than the east side (turning off Nine Mile), and it turned out that the reverse was true. I was also surprised that the west side was as well paved as it was, almost like it was/had been a primary road (the very end notwithstanding).

I'd be interested to find out anything more about its removal in records, but have not the slightest idea of what I should look into for that.

On an unrelated note, not long after I turned back onto Nine Mile and continued south, I noticed one bridge I crossed had wooden railings. That stood out immediately for the sake of, well, being a road bridge with wooden railings still standing in 2018. Didn't stop to check it out or anything because I was pressed for time, but...probably next chance I get, I'll head back there.

Posted May 1, 2018, by Nathan Holth (webmaster [at] historicbridges [dot] org)


I believe one of the strongest voices in favor of demolition passed away a couple years ago. Unfortunately the bridge is an expensive proposition to restore due to the fact that all pin plates on the lower chord connections have been compromised by dangerously poor repairs in the bridge's past that would all need to be replaced. That said, if anyone out there has a ton of money burning a whole in their pocket this bridge is available for reuse.

Posted April 30, 2018, by Mike (mjkerkau [at] gmail [dot] com)

Seven years later...evidently the quest to have the bridge removed must have fallen apart.

Assuming this Google Maps satellite view is accurate, it appears to still be standing in place:,-84.9328707,150m/dat...

A regular Google search also turned up these county Road Commission minutes:

At the June 14 meeting just last year, someone was asking about its removal. The fact that that question would even be posed clearly means it was still there then - and I'm inclined to think it still is now.

Incidentally, there was another search result from a 2014 RC meeting where the preview mentions something about limited repairs to the bridge, but the link doesn't work so you can't read it from there.

Posted April 28, 2018, by Mike (mjkerkau [at] gmail [dot] com)

I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but...

This bridge appears to be on its way out:

Posted April 27, 2018, by Don


I believe many of these bridges were added by James early on from the NIB. Bridgehunter is copyright 2002 to 2018.

That is the reason for the disclaimer about being from the NBI and not verified, no photo and no map.

They may have been added from the early NBI and not been changed even as they have been lost and/or delisted in later versions.

I believe that these "not verified" bridges appear in the to do list as well.

Position data and current status may not have been updated in all this time, and may be wrong. Of course, the position hasn't moved, but it may be approximate, not exact.

Sometimes, it's hard to figure out exactly where the bridges were due to inaccuracies in the NBI.

If you have an editor account and current correct info, you could update these pages and any in the to do list if you wish.

A good way to start contributing is to visit and document some of these bridges in your area. Using satellite imagery can be useful to verify lost bridges too.

Posted April 27, 2018, by Mike (mjkerkau [at] gmail [dot] com)

Err...I think this page may need updating?

The Historic Bridges page has it well-documented that the original bridge no longer exists, but for whatever reason this page doesn't appear to reflect that. (Among other things, I'm pretty sure the inspection stats listed - which are from 2016 - are for the replacement bridge which was installed in 2011.)

The original bridge was washed out due to a heavy rainstorm on June 12-13, 2008 (article linked which gives the date):

Page 3 of this PDF has a photo of the replacement bridge (which doesn't look half-bad considering what it replaced):

Posted April 26, 2018, by Mike (mjkerkau [at] gmail [dot] com)

Re-posting this, as I believe THIS - not the one titled Little Salt Creek Bridge - was the one I meant to describe when I first posted this last night:

"If this is what I think it is...I'd imagine that this bridge has been closed off for some time.

I remember once driving through the backroads in Midland County, it was spring/summer of 2007. I went up Salt River Road to Alamando, and Alamando had a sign right there when I turned. It might have said Bridge Out, though I don't quite remember, and I can't quite read this posted sign says on Google StreetView. (I'm thinking it's gotta be either Bridge Out or Pavement Ends.),-84.5284178,3a,75y,19...

I do remember getting a little closer to where the bridge is supposed to be, though, and the road was closed off.

This report says the bridge is closed to all traffic, and judging by the exact location - I want to think this is that same bridge I'm remembering here. And if that's the case, I'd imagine it's been...ages! Since this was open."

Now, the report for this bridge says it's open - and satellite view in Google Maps clearly shows that there IS still something there at this site...but the Salt River crosses Alamando in two locations south of Stewart Road, and the satellite view did NOT show two clear crossings on the map - so I wonder if there used to be a second bridge at this same stretch of road that has since been lost.

Posted April 26, 2018, by Mike (mjkerkau [at] gmail [dot] com)

I might be mixing this one up with the one that is labelled, Alamando Road Bridge - - looking at maps again, I think that's the one I meant to be talking about.

Whereas THIS bridge would've been between Jasper and Shepherd Roads, closer to Shepherd. I...think? I've been down Shepherd Road at least once, but I don't think I've ever been up or down this section of Alamando.

Much to my surprise though, Google StreetView has an available photo nearby here too! This is the corner of Jasper and Alamando (date: July 2009):,-84.5284029,3a,75y,19...

Notice there's both No Outlet and Road Closed signs up - I can think of two reasons why the latter would be up:

1) It's a sign that went up when the bridge was lost and has remained ever since.

2) There was a flooding event at the time, and it was closed because the road was flooded.

What's odd, though, is that Google Maps clearly shows that Alamando doesn't cross the creek:,-84.5298405,16z

I find that odd because that would be Google accounting for the road being cut off, which doesn't always happen with them.

One other thing: The two bridge listings for Alamando Road were definitely confusing to check, mainly because when I look up and down the multiple sections of Alamando Road in Midland County, it crosses waterways no less than TWELVE times! Good luck keeping track of them all.

Whatever would have been between Jasper and Shepherd, though, is the only one with anything suggesting it was this Little Salt Creek Bridge. Satellite on Google Maps shows that Alamando does get kind of close to the creek, so that would point to that there used to be a bridge there and now there's not.

I wonder, though, if the 1995 inventory mis-labeled one of the two bridges? Maybe, one is supposed to be THIS bridge, and the other is actually supposed to be the Alamando Road Bridge identified with the link at the beginning of this post.

Posted April 25, 2018, by Don Morrison

Indeed, Google Earth shows no bridge here in imagery from April 9, 1999. Guess we can verify this one as lost.

Odd that the NBI didn't unlist it until after 2008.

Under facts it has the standard disclaimer:

Note: The following information comes from the National Bridge Inventory and has not been verified.

Posted April 25, 2018, by Nathan Holth (webmaster [at] historicbridges [dot] org)

My research in 2006 suggested both Alamando Road Bridges were gone. They supposedly still existed when the 1995 inventory was take.

Posted April 25, 2018, by Mike (mjkerkau [at] gmail [dot] com)

Probably for some time now. I want to think I remember driving by here at least once some years ago and a "Bridge Out" sign was posted, but as of at least 2012, Google StreetView says there's no such signs posted at either end - at least not at the cross street corners (Garfield, 9 Mile).,-84.087526,3a,15y,12...,-84.0675534,3a,15y,2...

So, either what was there was washed away, or the county removed it.

Posted April 25, 2018, by Mike (mjkerkau [at] gmail [dot] com)

If this is what I think it is...I'd imagine that this bridge has been closed off for some time.

I remember once driving through the backroads in Midland County, it was spring/summer of 2007. I went up Salt River Road to Alamando, and Alamando had a sign right there when I turned. It might have said Bridge Out, though I don't quite remember, and I can't quite read this posted sign says on Google StreetView. (I'm thinking it's gotta be either Bridge Out or Pavement Ends.),-84.5284178,3a,75y,19...

I do remember getting a little closer to where the bridge is supposed to be, though, and the road was closed off.

This report says the bridge is closed to all traffic, and judging by the exact location - I want to think this is that same bridge I'm remembering here. And if that's the case, I'd imagine it's been...ages! Since this was open.

Posted April 12, 2018, by FRANK FICK (fickkats [at] aol [dot] com)


Posted April 12, 2018, by FRANK FICK (fickkats [at] aol [dot] com)

Taken 04/11/2018

Posted March 19, 2018, by Dhdh (mailservernoreply [at] jacksonmi [dot] gov)

Still exists. Is part of trail program now.

Posted March 19, 2018, by Dhd (mailservernoreply [at] jacksonmi [dot] gov)

Its gone, judging by its aerial view.

Posted March 18, 2018, by Jason (mailservernoreply [at] jacksonmi [dot] gov)

This bridge was demolished based on google aerial view

Posted March 18, 2018, by C (mailservernoreply [at] jacksonmi [dot] gov)

Apparently this bridge fell some time ago as my friend and fellow bridge lover went up there and its gone. She said there are debris for it.

Posted March 2, 2018, by Anonymous

Deck girder?

Posted March 2, 2018, by M. Long (melray082008 [at] gmail [dot] com)

Correction: Bridge built in 1986

Posted February 19, 2018, by Dan Seelye

Pin is right on. Dan -bridge removed

Posted February 18, 2018, by Dana and Kay Klein

Thanks for sharing Dan! I set pin at possible bridge location if incorrect post here and someone will adjust. Thanks again

Posted February 18, 2018, by Dan Seelye

I have this picture of Blue Rd. Bridge, The only picture I have seen of it.My father in picture abt1967.

Posted December 27, 2017, by FRANK FICK (fickkats [at] aol [dot] com)

Son and I went there last summer 2017.Road commission or DNR really did a number on the old road lots of barriers and brush to get to it

Posted December 27, 2017, by FRANK FICK (fickkats [at] aol [dot] com)

This Arch was done in the 80's.As bad as you do not like the work they did at least we still have it

Posted November 18, 2017, by Julie Bowers (jbowerz1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

Join us....

Posted October 11, 2017, by MARK WELLINGTON (wholesaledirectent [at] gmail [dot] com)

Thought this might be a pic to enjoy of the bridge. Taken 10-09-2017 looking at the bridge going up stream.

Posted September 7, 2017, by Nathan Holth (webmaster [at] historicbridges [dot] org)

One of the most significant historic bridges in North America is now slated for demolition, thanks to owner Matty Moroun (aka Matty Moron) who in unprecidented stupidity still seeks to replace (rather than rehab) this bridge despite the fact that he lost the battle to prevent construction of the competing Gordie Howe Bridge downstream. The better solution would be rehab of this bridge for continued vehicular use which will be much less busy after the Gordie Howe Bridge is completed. So the fate of this bridge may be determined by a bitter, greedy old man.

Posted May 12, 2017, by Dana and Kay Klein

Regardless of Tee Beam opinion They are an extremely durable design!

Posted May 4, 2017, by John Keller (j1952k [at] aol [dot] com)

I'm looking for a accident report that happen in 1981 on the government bridge in St. Joseph, mi

And Benton Harbor, Mi.

Thank You

John Keller


Posted April 19, 2017, by Sherman Cahal (shermancahal [at] gmail [dot] com)

Not really. This is one of the few I've seen.

Posted April 17, 2017, by Dana

Interesting laminated arch Sherman, are these common in this area?

Posted March 11, 2017, by gary rogers (grogers [at] fraserlawfirm [dot] com)

A real blast from the past. I recall this bridge well and crossed it hundreds of times. My father, born in 1892 (yes, that is correct) used to jump off the bridge with friends as a youth. He told the story of a stranger coming to the bridge one day on a bicycle, climbing to the very top of the bridge and diving off... then floating to the surface. My father and others jumped in and pulled him out of the water. Once revived, the guy thanked them, got on his bicycle and road away never to be seen again! My father called the bridge Stotch or Scotch bridge or something like that. No idea why but I am sure there was a reason as he was a child when the bridge was built and probably watched some of the construction as he lived only a little over a mile from the bridge (as the crow flies).

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

My point about the review of my photos is that if the plaque were not either original or an exact (ie made using a rubber mold of an original) copy it typically would have a smooth, modern, look to it.

I believe you refer to Alan King Sloan's King Bridge Company website? His impressive efforts are an ongoing research project and while he has an impressive wealth of information I would not assume it to be 100% complete to be sure. If you poke around on his website you will find a catalog of standard designs. It includes standard plaques. Your plaque was Standard Name Plate #4.

Obviously, the 1886 plaque on 2nd Street isn't one of the Standard Name Plates. However, it is not uprising that one of the company's longest span trusses located in the heart of a city would be given some "non-standard" treatment.

Also, I would add that King Bridge was one of the largest bridge companies in the country. It is unfathomable that a successful company of this size would have only built one bridge in 1886. No doubt there are many bridges they built that we don't have records of today.

Posted February 8, 2017, by Art S. (asuckewer [at] knite [dot] com)


The lower central plaque on the bridge has the maker's name and is standard for late King Whipple trusses. In fact, you will note it even has a date cartouche at it's top. However, it is blank - apparently the commissioners wanted a bit more 'bling' hence the large date plaques at the top.

Your plaque is for a smaller, probably Pratt, truss; look up the 1885 Mine Road bridge in Mercer County, NJ for comparison.

By the way, by restoration, do you mean that you have the capability of restoring the missing section and mounting tabs on your plaque and have done so on similar examples of old cast iron? If so, I'd love to see examples of your work!


Art S.

Posted February 8, 2017, by David Lgendre (dlegend62 [at] gmail [dot] com)

I have done some more research on the King Iron Bridge and Manufacturing Co. I still did not find another bridge they built in 1886. I did however come across a typo that dated the 2nd street bridge at 1883. On their website is a tab for Bridge Plates-The Builders Signature. There they have examples of period Bridge plates which are identical to the plate I have pictured. The new photos that I am seeing of the 2nd Street Bridge have a the same shape Bridge Plate on the top cross-beam but only contain the year 1886. There is no example of such a plate on the King Iron Bridge website. The website also mentions how many bridges contained 4 to 5 plaques depending on the requests. I did not understand the comment about the photos you have. I would mention that I restore old cast iron and the picture I posted is after restoration. It did contain much rust with significant build-up. It also had the original iron hangers on the back which appeared to be cut-off with a torch. I removed and retained the hangers and the period bolts.

Posted February 6, 2017, by Nathan Holth (webmaster [at] historicbridges [dot] org)

David, I am not sure what looks inauthentic about the 2nd Street Bridge's plaques, but I have looked at my photos of the plaque up close and it shows pitting and other details typical of original cast iron, or an exact re-cast replica. It can be seen in historical postcards as well. This bridge does have an unusually elaborate collection of plaques, including date plaque on top, builder plaque in the center of portal bracing, and end post plaques as well... this is much more than a typical King may have had. The 1886 plaque you have would be more common, I think the 2nd Street Bridge's arrangement is more elaborate because it was a large span located in the heart of a city. Smaller-span bridges and those in more rural locations for example would have had the "all-in-one" plaque of the style you have... so its hard to say what specific bridge it might have came from.

Posted February 6, 2017, by David Legendre (dlegend62 [at] gmail [dot] com)

I was wondering if they replaced the date plaque 1886. I came across the cast iron plaque and this is the only bridge I can find from King in 1886. I will attach a photo of the piece I found and I must say it appears more authentic than the 1886 bridge topper in the Allegany Bridge photos.

I appreciate any help with trying to identify my piece.

Posted February 2, 2017, by Nathan Holth (webmaster [at] historicbridges [dot] org)

I have no idea what Howlet, MI is, and Howell, MI has nothing to do with either this bridge or the Huron River, but I think the bridge you are looking for is this one (see my historical photo within my narrative).

Posted February 2, 2017, by Douglas Butler

I need help with this one I just deleted the page this bridge says Jefferson Avenue, when I mapped it Ann Harbor between Monroe and Wayne County this Photo picture says Howlet MI when I tried to find the county of Howlet instead it says Howell Michigan.

Posted January 29, 2017, by Caleb Wagner (Calebo1212 [at] gmail [dot] com)

This bridge was taken down between 1996 and 1999, closer to the first date.

Posted January 17, 2017, by george oakley (georgeoakley49 [at] yahoo [dot] com)

Thanks to you Nathan and Dana and Kay for responding.I failed to mention that while out on the water you do have to watch out for other boat traffic.As long as you are not on their property and remain in the water you can actually take pictures of this bridge and the other lift bridge which looks to be closed from what i have seen on satellite and also looking at it on street view.I do know from boating what rules do apply while out on the water.As for the security guards which i call rent-a-cops i worked in a refinery which had private security and know what they can and can't do.

Posted January 16, 2017, by Nathan Holth (webmaster [at] historicbridges [dot] org)

Just to clarify for those not familiar, we are talking (around Zug Island) about coast guard regulated commercial waterways. These still allow access in the way smaller waterways might (such as for recreational use), but there also are these restricted zones that may override high water level etc. You would still be able to pass thru, but may not be able to utilize every square inch of the water (such as to get certain angles of photos). Certain number of feet may be required to be kept between your vessel and another vessel for a dock for example. I do not claim to be an expert on this stuff, but I have been on commercial waters with someone who as their job works on commercial barges. He told me those were things to watch out for.

Also including the NOAA Chart for this area.

Posted January 16, 2017, by Dana and Kay Klein

Riparian rights balance the rights of citizens free access to waterways and property owners rights. Vary by state and watercourse. GENERALLY access to high water mark of NAVIGABLE waterways allowed. Michigan varies by whether lake or river. Some counties in Texas extended property to center of watercourses specifically to prevent ingress. In general courtesy is your best friend. If asked to leave , leave. Air space another thing now that camera drones are available. FAA controls 500 feet and up, 83 to 500 feet a grey area. Up to 83 feet or fair use height is property owners.

Posted January 16, 2017, by Nathan Holth (webmaster [at] historicbridges [dot] org)

I would assume that a clear pathway for the public must be maintained on the waterway. The restrictions would (again in theory) control how close you come to the shoreline or to docked boats. While it may be true that they can't force you to delete your photos, because in that scenario you are on the privately owned island, they could call the police and have you arrested for criminal trespass. US Steel is pretty hardcore with their security. I have, near other US Steel properties, been unlawfully told I cannot take photos from a public sidewalk. Unlike taking photos from private property, they have no right whatsoever to restrict photography from a public sidewalk.

Posted January 16, 2017, by george oakley (georgeoakley49 [at] yahoo [dot] com)

Nathan,i read your post on taking pictures from boats dated 8-31-2013.As far as i know no waterway is owned by private companies which means as long as you are not a threat to the environment you can take pictures of whatever you want.Being that this is a lift bridge also lends credence to the fact that this is a shipping lane for boat traffic.As for the rent-a-cops they cannot force you to delete any pictures without a court order being that any cameras are your private property.This also makes me wonder why they have rent-a-cops.

Posted January 14, 2017, by Luke

Nicely done.

Posted January 14, 2017, by EastOfGratiot (wadewmbryant [at] aol [dot] com)

This is my n-scale replica of the 141 bridge.

Posted January 3, 2017, by Nathan Holth (webmaster [at] historicbridges [dot] org)

There also used to be a two-span riveted Warren pony truss leading to the nearby island northwest of the highway bridge. This bridge was removed and replaced. The trusses are in storage, but sadly are in bad condition and given other more significant bridges available for reuse, unlikely to be reused in the future. The bridge was removed before I began photographing bridges, so I don't have any photos of it standing.

Posted January 3, 2017, by Luke
Posted January 3, 2017, by Dana and Kay Klein

What was there before this one?

Posted January 3, 2017, by Nathan Holth (webmaster [at] historicbridges [dot] org)

This bridge has been gone for many years, with a slab of concrete in its place.

Posted December 29, 2016, by Chris huxtable (Tcpattycake1 [at] att [dot] net)

Correction;crystal beach rd,torch river,south end of torch lake,map is clam river,not torch river,used to reside there! Bridge no longer exists, was replaced early 70's......chris

Posted December 20, 2016, by Nathan Holth (webmaster [at] historicbridges [dot] org)

That is correct, see attached from bridge plans. The structure was designed by Hardesty and Hanover.

Posted December 20, 2016, by Roger Deschner (rogerdeschner [at] gmail [dot] com)

From the photos at, this appears to be a Scherzer-type rolling lift bridge, an unusual design for 2015. Is this true?

Posted December 6, 2016, by N. Stony Creek Road Bridge Visitor (cjkemp877 [at] gmail [dot] com)

The bridge is gone. The bridge over the overflow is still there. Some old pieces of the deck are still there. I also have 2 old wood boards that broke from this bridge.

Posted October 29, 2016, by Steven M. Kish, Jr. (skish271571mi [at] comcast [dot] net)

Although a great portion of the bridge was destroyed, five 88 foot long Steel Pony Truss sections of the bridge adjacent to Belle Isle were saved from the fire. They were floated downriver 150 feet and were re-used as part of the temporary wooden bridge that was used to access Belle Isle until the new concrete bridge structure was completed in 1923. The temporary wooden bridge was dismantled along with the five 88 foot Steel Pony Truss sections. One of these sections was purchased by the Swan family of Grosse Ile Michigan and had Dunbar and Sullivan dredge out the swamp that separated Snake Island (later renamed Swan Island in honor of the Swan family) from southwest Grosse Ile. Besides, who would want to live on Snake Island?. Once the new canal was completed, Dunbar and Sullivan floated the surviving 88 foot Steel Pony Truss section of the original Belle Isle bridge down the Detroit River on a barge and erected it over the new canal. The wood deck roadbed remained in place until the bridge was updated in the 1950s and was replaced by a concrete deck. Three feet of the south side of the bridge had a concrete sidewalk added for foot traffic. The Swan Island bridge is still in use, over 115 years after it was originally built and erected over the Detroit River. Interesting note, the Native Americans name for what is now called Belle Isle was translated and meant "Swan Island". I have attached a superimposed picture (Thanks to Nathan Holth of and the Detroit Library) of the 88 foot Pony Truss bride sections on Belle Isle with a current picture ( of the Swan Island Bridge. I lived on Swan Island from 1947 until 1965 and watched the bridge being updated in the 50s.

Posted September 24, 2016, by Julie Bowers (jbowerz1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

Almost disassembled. Always interesting. Nels plan was executed. One section left.

Posted September 12, 2016, by Douglas Butler

I recognize the double section of a planned design.

Posted September 12, 2016, by Douglas Butler

I see another swing span further left of a double swing

Posted September 6, 2016, by Tony Dillon (spansaver [at] hotmail [dot] com)

Nothing I like seeing more in the same photo than section-loss covered by nice shiny paint!

Posted September 6, 2016, by Tony Dillon (spansaver [at] hotmail [dot] com)

Load-bearing arch = Engineer that has no clue how to properly restore a truss bridge.

Posted September 6, 2016, by Nathan Holth (webmaster [at] historicbridges [dot] org)

I laughed at Frank's comment that someone claimed this bridge would be good until the 22nd Century. I revisited this bridge for the first time since its been repainted. As part of this work, the deck appears to be rearranged to offer a better view of the lower chord of the original truss. Further, the bridge was closed to traffic due to other unrelated roadwork. This offered me good conditions for close inspection.

The results are both staggering and very sad indeed. What is the cost of adding a load-bearing arch? The answer is simple. All incentive to maintain the original truss. The consequences have been catastrophic. The bottom chord is so badly deteriorated the bottom chord has totally disintegrated in some areas. Crude repairs have attempted to hold together what is left of the bottom chord. Unparalleled section loss also found in the diagonal members and vertical members in the lower "splash zone" area. The pins have lost so much section that their once-cylindrical shape is totally deformed beyond recognition.

Without the load-bearing arch, this bridge would have either been repaired or been closed to traffic many years ago no doubt. Without the load-bearing arch, the truss in its current condition would very likely collapse.

The facts are clear. Rendering trusses decorative should only be allowed if there is reasonable assurance that the owner will continue to maintain the historic trusses as if they were in fact load-bearing.

Posted September 6, 2016, by Julie Bowers (jbowerz1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

Shoring goes in at Martin Road Bridge with the BACH Steel Rivet Gang in charge. The bridge will be disassembled, restored and moved to Delaware. It's nice to see an idea brought to life with engineering and put into action.

This bridge will grace Red Clay Creek at Yorklyn Heights Preserve in northern Delaware next year.

Posted August 24, 2016, by Matt Lohry


I remember seeing that photo too; it creeped me out just a bit! Just like guns, those darn bridges keep going around and killing everyone--not the actions of any people!! B>Q I've personally found many of Doug's drawings to be helpful in giving me a pretty good idea of what some of these bridges look like, especially those without any other photos or street views. They're pretty good, and an obvious amount of effort from an obvious historic bridge fan has been put into them. So, with that, Doug, draw away!

Posted August 24, 2016, by Tony Dillon (spansaver [at] hotmail [dot] com)

They don't bother me Doug... And in some cases where there are no photos posted, they at least offer a decent perspective of what the structure looks (looked) like!

Considering there are some bridges on this site that have as much as 200 pictures posted and it would be easy to say that many of those are repetitious... I don't see the problem with a couple sketches.

Hell... We even had a pic of a guy laying in a casket on here at one time! I don't remember which bridge it was, but a guy got drunk and ran into it and "it killed him". I felt bad because it was a sister that was upset her brother died and posted a photo of him because she blamed the bridge... But it was still a bit of a shock!

Posted August 24, 2016, by Douglas Butler


Eric and Arts Don't look at them then if they irritate you haters!!! its a free country understand try drawing a thousand bridges of your favorite type past twenty years other than that stop slighting my work!!!

Posted August 22, 2016, by ArtS (asuckewer [at] knite [dot] com)


Nope, they irritate many of us but the owner of the site seems to like them.

At least they are now referred to as the sketches they are as opposed to technical drawings as they were originally referred to.


Art S.

Posted August 22, 2016, by Eric Kinkhorst (erick [dot] bud [at] gmail [dot] com)

Do these bridge sketches really serve a purpose?

Posted July 22, 2016, by Nathan Holth (nathan [at] historicbridges [dot] org)
Posted July 21, 2016, by J.P. (wildcatjon2000 [at] gmail [dot] com)

This may be the only surviving Queenpost surviving in the state of Michigan.

I was able to find a picture of it from the state website,4616,7-151-9623_11154_11188-2...

Posted July 20, 2016, by Nathan Holth (nathan [at] historicbridges [dot] org)

Robert railroad companies tend to make unreasonable demands upon anyone seeking to acquire one of their bridges. For example, if a railroad is replacing a through truss. If nobody wants to reuse the bridge, the railroad might still pick the entire span intact with a crane and set it on the ground, so as to minimize the time where the railroad is closed to trains. Then the railroad would have to pay workers to cut up the bridge for scrap. FYI scrap steel value is at an all-time low so its not a profitable endeavor. Given these parameters, one might think that the railroad would be happy to transfer ownership of the truss after its set on the ground for another person to non-destructively disassemble. However, this is not what I have seen happen. First, the railroad will require the third party to remove the bridge from the tracks at the expense of the third party. This includes labor, crane rental, engineering for the pick, as well as flaggers on the railroad tracks, even though the railroad was going to do these things on their own. Second, the railroad will charge a fee for the bridge span as if its a new product being sold at profit. One span was being offered for over $30,000.

If you think there is a way to overcome this attitude on the part of railroads then go for it, it would be nice to see these railroad bridges being reused.

Posted July 20, 2016, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

The question is, how can we better communicate with railroad companies. Saving a bridge requires time, energy, and money. If we someone is willing to purchase a doomed bridge, perhaps some companies might be willing to market them. There is a free market solution to everything...

Posted July 19, 2016, by Tony Dillon (spansaver [at] hotmail [dot] com)

It would be wrong to fault the engineers and builders of the replacement spans... As they are just doing the jobs they are paid to do.

That being said, We who visit, contribute to, and help keep this site going are preservationists. When an injustice like this is executed against any historic bridge, we will not (and should never)restrain from saying our peace against the irrational and illogical actions of the agencies who are short-sighted in their process.

...My two cents worth

Posted July 19, 2016, by Nathan Holth (nathan [at] historicbridges [dot] org)

I would like to add support for the thought that nobody on this page (or my own page for this bridge on intended to call into question the competency of the contractors working the job. And I have no doubts that the engineers who designed the new bridge did a great job doing that. Although certainly if we (as is typically the nature of discussion on a website like this) are considering the heritage and aesthetic values of the two bridges, obviously only the old bridge had heritage and aesthetics and the new one has none.

Here are my concerns with the project. Michigan State Historic Preservation Office failed to evaluate the bridge as eligible for the National Register of Historic Places. This eliminated Section 106 from the process and prevented me from having input into the discussion. I disagree that the altered spans were not historic, indeed I submit that the alterations (having occurred so long ago) were themselves historic.

Second, I question the need for a new bridge at this location, when it appears that another railroad bridge that goes to exactly the same two east and west locations is located a bit north of here. This is not the Chicago-Toronto or Chicago-New York City corridor. Its not that busy. I find it odd that today so many railroad bridges are needed here. Had Section 106 taken place, a civilized discussion about this could have taken place.

I will say this 99% of the time, railroads do not care for preservation or history. The problem with railroad companies is that they are for-profit companies, not Non-Profit Foundations. Does preserving a historic bridge get the product delivered faster? Cheaper? More efficiently? If the answer to these is no, than the railroad has no reason to preserve the bridge. The only reason many railroad bridges seem to be preserved by railroads is simply because maintenance makes sense from a financial standpoint. Its usually cheaper and less disruptive to rail traffic to keep what they have in good shape. This is why I get so frustrated with highway DOTs because they waste money by letting bridges deteriorate and then spending a lot of money to replace them.

But when a railroad decides an old bridge isn't getting the job done, watch out...

Posted July 19, 2016, by John Marvig (marvigj27 [at] gmail [dot] com)

I think my message was misinterpreted. For starters, I am not an engineer. From a functional perspective, I am quite sure that the new bridge is solid, and will serve traffic well for the coming years. Secondly, I did not mean to offend those who worked on the structure. I understand it was your job, and you can be proud of your work. I understand the need to replace aging structures, however I question if alternatives were ever considered (such as using the north line through Wells, preservation of the trusses, etc). My frustration stems from driving several hundred miles from Minnesota to see a historic through truss structure, which is visually quite appealing to nearly everyone and being met with a modern, and quite plain girder structure. This is a website with contributors who have an interest in documenting and preserving historic bridges, and replacement of a structure like this is not taken well by the group on here.

Lastly, I did not intend to disparage anyone, and I am sorry if you took it like I did. However, I am a historic bridge enthusiast and after driving several hundred miles to document the historic structure, there will be a bad taste in my mouth for seeing the modern girder. Like it or not, the new bridge has little to no character. I understand it was your project and you are proud of it, however it consists of spans pre constructed in a shop, and shipped to the location. The very unique truss bridge that once stood here is only a memory, replaced by a bridge that is significantly less appealing. So when I call the bridge ugly, I am stating my mind, and likely several other contributors to this site. The bridge was built strictly for functionalism and features no visually appealing characteristics.

Posted July 19, 2016, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

Naturally, railroad companies are not primarily in the preservation business. Likewise preservationists are not primarily in the transportation business. We would do well to work with each other and learn from each other.

There are historic railroad bridges that continue to serve the companies that maintain them. Preservationists are always happy to see such bridges maintained.

Of course, sometimes replacement is necessary. We don't expect an 1884 wrought iron Pratt truss to carry an Interstate. It is understandable that railroad companies face similar issues related to weight limits, width, height clearance, etc.

If we are serious about preserving historic railroad bridges, we need to be willing to work with the companies. Likewise, if railroad companies were willing to sell, or offer doomed bridges to preservationists, these bridges could be moved for pedestrian or light vehicular use by a new owner. There are options out there if we are willing to find them.

Posted July 18, 2016, by Casey


Your employer built an ugly-as-hell replacement bridge whilst passing off the historic structure as "non-historic", and you expect people to be kind about it?

Posted July 18, 2016, by Peter Schierloh (forthbrdge [at] aol [dot] com)

I am sorry to see that John feels the need to disparage the efforts of those that were involved in the replacement of the spans in this bridge. Please understand those that designed and built the new spans are dedicated individuals that take their profession seriously. To many, the demolition of a structure such as this is not taken lightly. The history of this crossing and our place in it is understood, but in the end the realities of the structure's age, design, and materials made replacement the best viable option.

John has taken some excellent photos of the bridge, and these photos are appreciated by those of us that have spent the last five years working on bringing this project to fruition. It is understandable that John may be frustrated by the ultimate outcome, but publicly ridiculing the structure and then essentially writing it off as no longer being a suitable bridge is inappropriate and unprofessional.

Posted July 12, 2016, by Nathan Holth (nathan [at] historicbridges [dot] org)

Royce, that is a pretty ambitious schedule... if you are ever back in Michigan with more time feel free to get in touch with me if you are interested in meeting up. We sadly don't get many bridgehunters up here.

Posted July 12, 2016, by Royce and Bobette Haley (roycehaley111 [at] yahoo [dot] com)


I spent a stretch of my early life in Michigan. My dad's side of the family lives through out the SE. We spent a short vacation near Flint and unfortunately did not have a lot of time for bridges. I shot a few and took my kid to ride the Big Mac (used to scare the crap out of me when we would go camping up in the UP). I lived a short way from Port Huron near Richmond. Anyway we were pressed for time trying to make it to Niagara so not many bridges. But have some from the rest of the trip I am posting.


Posted July 8, 2016, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

Well, the demolition of this rare bridge was a surprise. If only it was a bridge with a lid...

Posted July 7, 2016, by Nathan Holth (nathan [at] historicbridges [dot] org)

Royce: Looks like you visited Port Huron and the only bridge you photographed was the new Blue Water Bridge? Granted the old/historic bridge is harder to photo than the new bridge from the American side, but I was still surprised. Didn't visit any of the Black River bridges either?

The new Blue Water Bridge (aka the Second Span) was designed in an unusual Tied Arch design as a compromise for area residents who wanted a twin to the beautiful historic bridge (which would have been cost prohibitive). If anyone had tried to build a cable-stayed bridge here (one of the options presented to the public) the locals would have run the engineers out of town.

I grew up in Port Huron and all this seemed logical and I didn't realize how rare this was until I started documenting historic bridges in states like Missouri and Pennsylvania which think the only solution for a large-span historic truss is to demolish and replace with ugly cable-stayed bridge.

The historic span is currently being repainted. Repainting. Maintenance. For anyone reading this who lives in Missouri, these are things you can do keep a historic truss bridge in service. I grow tired of DOT claims that a rehabbed truss will fall apart after 25 years. The historic Blue Water Bridge was rehabbed in 1999. It isn't falling apart. Its just being repainted. Maybe a few minor repairs. Keep paint on a bridge and it won't fall apart. Also, look closely at the new bridge. See that brown stuff? Its called RUST. Yes, contrary to many DOTs that claim that new bridges do not require maintenance yet will last 100 years, this is not true. The new bridge will need to be repainted just like the historic bridge.

Posted June 16, 2016, by John Berry (jberry3412 [at] yahoo [dot] com)

Im tracking this bridge down. I have already contacted Zehnders and its confirmed that the bridge went there, but was never used. Waiting to hear back if its stored or scrapped. If its stored going to start trying to get it brought back to Eaton Rapids

Posted April 15, 2016, by Peter Dudley (APeterDudley [at] comcast [dot] net)

A September 2013 Google street view shows the current bridge from a point downstream, along the "old channel" of the Rouge River, as seen from West Jefferson Avenue.

This former railroad bridge has been designated as a "hot metal escape route" from Zug Island (left).

Abandoned rails are still embedded in the former West Jefferson Avenue railroad grade crossing.

Posted April 15, 2016, by Peter Dudley (APeterDudley [at] comcast [dot] net)

The original bridge at this site was completed by Detroit & Lima Northern Railway, a predecessor of Detroit, Toledo & Ironton Railroad, in 1898.

This photograph provides a view downstream, along the "old channel" of the Rouge River, showing Zug Island (right), and an interlocking tower (left). The tower controlled the level crossing of the railroad by Detroit United Railway's West Jefferson Avenue electric interurban line.

A passenger station was built just north of West Jefferson, c. 1923 (Burton Historical Collection photo DPA0116, accessible online from

Posted April 5, 2016, by Nathan Holth (nathan [at] historicbridges [dot] org)

The shop riveting portion of the rehab/restoration job has been completed by Bach Steel.

Posted March 30, 2016, by Nathan Holth (nathan [at] historicbridges [dot] org)

This little and easily overlooked historic bridge is about to take its place in preservation history as Bach Steel commences shop riveting on March 31, 2016 as part of the comprehensive rehabilitation of this historic bridge. This project will be the first active highway bridge to receive new rivets in Michigan in decades (all riveting projects in recent Michigan history were for pedestrian bridges).

Genuine, historically correct rivets rather than modern bolts should be considered the ONLY acceptable way to rehabilitate a riveted bridge in keeping with the Secretary of Interior's Standards for Rehabilitation. Michigan has taken the lead in historic bridge preservation by recognizing this fact, with a total of THREE active historic highway bridges in 2016 to be rehabilitated with riveting to be a part of the contract.

Other states DOTs and SHPOs need to take notice of Michigan and follow its lead, along with a growing number of states that have done projects with riveting. Riveting is safe, cost-effective, and the only way to rehabilitate riveted bridges in keeping with the Secretary of Interior's Standards for Rehabilitation.

Posted March 30, 2016, by Nathan Holth (nathan [at] historicbridges [dot] org)

Especially one that (although a ruin) was when built among the earliest and largest of its kind in the entire state of Michigan. Please refer to my well-researched page here:

Posted March 29, 2016, by Anonymous

A concrete tee beam isn't a UCEB.

Posted March 29, 2016, by Chris Perry

Ahh, ordinary UCEB.....

Posted March 14, 2016, by Nathan Holth (webmaster [at] historicbridges [dot] org)

Ah yes, I know something of the two pony trusses over Beaver Creek. They have long been delisted from the National Bridge Inventory indicating that the road and bridges have been formally abandoned by the county road commission. This was confirmed quite clearly by the angry, armed landowners who confronted us when we visited the bridges. Long story short, road and bridges are now private and will almost certainly never be public again.

Posted March 14, 2016, by Tony Dillon (spansaver [at] hotmail [dot] com)

If only we had that much clout Carson!

Posted March 14, 2016, by Carson sobieski (cmsobieski10 [at] gmail [dot] com)

Could you guys please fix that bridge because me and my dad have Fields there and to go to the next one we have to take spencer road insted and it would just be so much eaiser taking our machines across the bridge Thank You please do it soon.

Posted February 13, 2016, by Eddie Miller (youngartist95 [at] gmail [dot] com)

I'm actually starting a thing on Facebook to beautify it and turn it into a pedestrian bridge. :)

Posted January 24, 2016, by Craig Aldinger (gonzogone [at] gmail [dot] com)

Taken from below the bridge, Fall 2015. Title should read "Redridge Dam". The rail bridge was built right next to the historic Redridge Steel Dam in Stanton Township, MI. Also, it was not built by Copper Range but by the Atlantic & Lake Superior, it connected to the CR on the south side of the bridge. See here for some details:

Posted January 9, 2016, by Charley Barth (biergerman [at] yahoo [dot] com)

Great website. I have some additional information on the subject bridge and would like it added to your notes. I am a former resident of Saint Joseph county and would like some assistance in declaring that bridge a historical site. I have a newspaper article from Helen Wickman on this bridge from 1981 that lays out some amazing detail and her interest in declaring it a historical site. The bridge in question is called the "Old Gross Bridge" just west of Three Rivers. My father is one of the current owners and we would like to see this bridge preserved. It was built in 1904 by Charles R Jackson and brother at a cost of $1550.00. If your society can help me get started with some research and assistance in writing the papers it would really be a win for the community. There was a recent article on the bridge at

My name is Charley Barth and my cell phone number is 571-238-1905. Thank you!!!