Rating:
9 votes

Kern Bridge

Photos 

Distant view from the road

Photo taken by Jason and Birgit Smith in December 2007

Enlarge

BH Photo #111466

Map 

Facts 

Overview
Bowstring through truss bridge over LeSeuer River at border of Mankato and South Bend Townships on Township Rd. 190 and 195th Lane
Location
Blue Earth County, Minnesota
Status
Closed to all traffic
History
Built 1873 by Wrought Iron Bridge Company Canton, OH; Closed to traffic in 1990
Design
Bowstring through truss
Dimensions
Span length: 190.0 ft.
Total length: 190.0 ft.
Also called
Yaeger Bridge
Approximate latitude, longitude
+44.10969, -94.04198   (decimal degrees)
44°06'35" N, 94°02'31" W   (degrees°minutes'seconds")
Approximate UTM coordinates
15/416614/4884583 (zone/easting/northing)
Quadrangle map:
Good Thunder
Inventory number
BH 36213 (Bridgehunter.com ID)

Update Log 

  • July 4, 2017: New photos from James Baughn
  • June 27, 2017: New photos from James Baughn
  • February 14, 2010: Updated by Matthew Lohry: Updated GPS coordinates
  • January 13, 2010: New photos from Jason Smith
  • February 6, 2008: Added by Jason Smith

Sources 

  • Jason Smith - flensburg [dot] bridgehunter [dot] av [at] googlemail [dot] com
  • HAER MN-45 - Kern Truss Bridge, Township Road over LeSueur River, Skyline vicinity, Blue Earth County, MN
  • Matt Lohry
  • Wikipedia
  • Historicbridges.org - by Nathan Holth

Comments 

Kern Bridge
Posted June 26, 2017, by Tony Dillon (spansaver [at] hotmail [dot] com)

It would be a woefully neglectful loss if this one should collapse

Kern Bridge
Posted June 25, 2017, by James Baughn (webmaster [at] bridgehunter [dot] com)

Field visit today: this bridge is on the verge of collapse. Severe erosion is threatening the eastern stone pier. The stones under the southeast bearing shoe are barely hanging on.

Kern Bridge
Posted February 28, 2013, by Julie Bowers (jbowerz1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

A conference call is scheduled for today between many state, federal, local jurisdictions regarding the future of this bridge. I get to participate in the role of funding opportunities, restoration ideas. It looks in pretty good shape from the pictures.

In the interest of the future of historic bridges we are starting another division under NSRGA dedicated to bowstrings. Nathan, you know we will work with all styles, but bowstrings are a first love. Kings or WBCos. I think if we can narrow it down, much like "Covered" we may be able to drive awareness and finances for saving this style, which will certainly then go towards the Warrens, Pratts, Parkers, Baltimores, Ponies that around here we all love. This focus on bowstrings will allow me to work with Sunny Brae on the Gilliece WBCO and continue the in-kind fabrications required for our McIntyre by King.

But it might be easier to take the national market by storm using the longest bowstring in the U.S. as the draw. Any ideas welcome.

Kern Bridge
Posted November 3, 2011, by Ted_Thoreson (Ted_Thoreson [at] yahoo [dot] com)

October, 2011

Kern Bridge
Posted November 3, 2011, by Ted_Thoreson (Ted_Thoreson [at] yahoo [dot] com)

October, 2011

Kern Bridge
Posted November 3, 2011, by Ted_Thoreson (Ted_Thoreson [at] yahoo [dot] com)

October, 2011

Kern Bridge
Posted November 3, 2011, by Ted_Thoreson (Ted_Thoreson [at] yahoo [dot] com)

October, 2011

Kern Bridge
Posted October 24, 2011, by Glenn Hagfors (mnragnar [at] earthlink [dot] net)

Photos of this bridge don't do it justice. One needs to be on the deck of this beautiful structure to appreciate the simple elegance of this design. In it's simplicity, the bridge quickly disappears from one's view and the beauty of the water, trees, wildlife, sky and wind can be fully enjoyed.

This is not a bridge to race across hurriedly in an automobile. This is a bridge for pause and reflection.

It would be a shame to see this bridge reduced to scrap steel if a similar place for quiet meditation could not be found for this quiet, peaceful structure.

http://www.panoramio.com/photo/60704865

http://www.panoramio.com/photo/60807790

http://www.panoramio.com/photo/60807750

Kern Bridge
Posted May 27, 2011, by Nathan Holth (form3 [at] historicbridges [dot] org)

My position on MOB bridges is that every time one is erected, a feasible opportunity to relocate and preserve a historic truss bridge has been lost. The reality is that there should not be a single abandoned or demolished historic truss bridge under, say, 200 feet in the entire country. Truss bridges of that size can be relocated and restored anywhere a MOB bridge is placed. Based on the number of MOB bridges I have seen, if each opportunity was taken, we would not have any bridges of these sizes sitting abandoned or in dumpsters.

Kern Bridge
Posted May 27, 2011, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

Link to afforementioned JoCo bridge:

http://bridgehunter.com/ks/johnson/515450460000001/

Kern Bridge
Posted May 27, 2011, by Robert Elder (robertelder1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

Interestingly, I have often heard of these MOBs referred to as unique, graceful, beautiful, breathtaking, etc. I don't have a problem with them being installed on a trail, but let's not think they are somehow special. This is not just a phenomenon in Mankato - many of us have seen these things hyped nationwide. In fact, a historic pony truss bridge was recently replaced by a MOB on a hiking trail in Johnson County, KS!

I know that I am probably preaching to the choir here, but MOBs are no more unique than the pair of Wranglers that I am wearing now. They do their job...

Kern Bridge
Posted May 27, 2011, by Nathan Holth (form3 [at] historicbridges [dot] org)

What an epic failure. The perfect place to relocate this bridge only five miles away, and what do they do? They order a MOB instead and then have the audacity to call it a bowstring truss. Why save a nationally significant bridge when you can just order a Walmart bridge instead. What a waste. http://mankatofreepress.com/local/x320356461/Unique-bridge-t...

Kern Bridge
Posted November 7, 2010, by Matthew Lohry

This bridge has been nominated for the list of bridges that should be saved.

Kern Bridge
Posted February 6, 2008, by Jason Smith (JDSmith77 [at] gmx [dot] net)

Links about this bridge are available here:

http://www.mankato-freepress.com/local/local_story_137004543...

(This includes a commentary written in 2007 by Jason and Birgit Smith)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kern_Bridge