We lived a few miles from Mosselle in the 1970s. Our place was actually only a mile from Brunn's Bridge over the Meramec River, which would be upstream from the old bridge you speak of. My Grandfather lived on the other side of where I-44 is now for nearly his whole life. His name was C.J. Hanneken. He told of working on the construction of the Mosselle Bridge, but I was a stupid kid and didn't recognize the history I was hearing, so I don't remember the date. My Grandmother, Clara Koester (and five bothers), grew up right there around St. Mary's. She and grandpa were married in 1937. He had great stories about Mosselle and the goings on there when he was a young man.
My memories of Mosselle are mostly that of a Ghost town, but our school bus picked up a dozen or so kids there to go to school in St. Clair. I don't remember many names. I do remember a family bought that old store/gas station, I guess on the east side of the RR tracks (the side with the old buildings) in the later 70s. I want to say their name was Dungi or Dungy (maybe Wayne Dungy).
That old bridge and Mosselle hold so many memories from my childhood. We walked and rode motorcycles across that bridge, and the old railroad bridge, more times than I could possibly count. My buddy, Mike Tyree, and I very nearly DIED on the RR bridge in January of 1977!!!. Mosselle was still regarded as a "tough place" when I was a kid in the 70s. I left there and have been in North Florida since the summer of 1979, so my memories stop there. It's fun to re-live them though.
Many fond memories of this bridge as others have said, it was our route to mass at St. Mary's. As a kid we often rode our bikes here and fished and dropped rocks in the river. The Bourbeuse dumps into the Meramec about 100 yards below the bridge site and the two rivers were so different, the Meramec swift and the Bourbeuse so slow the wind often blew it backwards. Seemed to me the flood that took it out was in 86 but I might be wrong. A floating clubhouse lodged against it and the pressure took it out. Some of the bridge is still in the river I'm pretty sure. As for Moselle, we moved there in 1964, bought what was the old Ford dealership. We ran a store there called The Moselle Store until around 1976?? We sold gas and my mom was the last postmaster: 63067. At the time we ran it there were three stores, Fisher's across the tracks, ours and Cope's, which was next door. Fisher's was really neat, it was air conditioned or at least really cool and had a wrought iron table and chairs you could sit on and drink your sodas. Other buildings -- on the corner just across the tracks (Frisco) was Pipkin's saloon--sign inside said "If whiskey gets the best of you, you can get the best of whiskey here." Other side of the tracks was a garage across from Fisher's, the bank, and a hotel. Bank's still there but hotel is mostly gone. Across from the hotel was the depot, only a foundation when I was there. You can find a photo of the depot by Googling Frisco and searching the archives. Town was a mining town, there's an iron smelter at Hilcrest Park still. Town disincorporated in the early 50s. Named for the Mosel/Moselle River on the border between Germany and France, spelling is French. In the old days the town was segregated between whites and blacks. To the east the blacks had their own church and school. White school was on the west side hills. Fantastic place to grow up!
During the mid to late 50's our grandfather had a 40 acre farm on top of the hill overlooking Moselle, we spent many a weekend and alot of good times there. I remember, if this is the bridge, crossing over on our way into town when we were getting there and back over to go to church at St. Mary's, or when we were going home. I've been down the road a couple of times since the bridge washed out, because I still have the fond memories, and I just want to recollect. I'd appreciate hearing from anyone about the old town. Does anyone know about a civil war battle that was fought in this area?
We had a Clubhouse (fishing cabin) about a 1/2 mile upstream from the bridge during the flood. I can remember sitting on the bluff by our cabin watching out-houses, propane tanks, roofs, you name it floating by. The entire valley as far as you could see was water.
The water came all the way up into our yard that year. Doesn't mean much and I have no way of measuring it now, but you could easily tell it was a record maker.
That day leading up to the high point we were in Union looking over the old Bridge at lovers leap. I have a photo of it somewhere. I remember walking out onto it and the entire bridge was vibrating! Spooky!
So many of our friends lost their cabins, boats, summer dreams that year.
Just can't pass this one up, it brings back some memories. My family moved to the Moselle area in 1969. The old bridge was in use then. We used to walk down to the bluff visible in the photo at the far end of the bridge and sometimes we would climb to the top. We also dropped a lot of huge rocks off the bridge for the big splash! In 1979 my wife and I moved to Moselle on the west end of town. In December of 1982 there was a massive flood on the Bourbeuse and Meramec rivers. The Meramec river washed all the railroad tracks off the fill from Moselle to the train bridge. The Bourbeuse river took out the old bridge. Based on the high water mark on the bluff I would estimate there was 5 to 10 feet of water over the bridge deck at the height of the flood. The bridge was washed about 200 feet downstream from which point it was cut up and removed by a salvage company. As best I can recall, this was around December 8-15 1982.
Sherry, looking for Moselle history, may be interested in this website:
I stand corrected. According to this website
Moselle was on the Frisco RR, not the Mo. Pac.
I've crossed this bridge many times in the '50s when I was a kid. Our family had a cabin on the Bourbeuse R. on the farm of Josie Otten and her daughter and son-in-law, Geo & Julie Hagedorn. One of the highlights of a summer stay at the cabin was the drive into Moselle across the old one-lane wooden deck bridge to get water and supplies. There was an old general store and a public hand-pump well in Moselle. The general store was about the only business left in town in the '50s and I think they closed shortly afterward. Moselle was a train stop on the Mo Pacific RR.
I think the bridge was damaged by a flood in the 60s or 70s and never reopened. It sat there for many years afterward but with no access to it. It was vey close to the mouth of the Bourbeuse where it empties into the Meramec.
I was reading your post about the Bourbeuse Bridge and wondered if you know where I can find some history on Moselle, Mo. We may be moving to the area and I was curious about whatever I could find.
I do beleave I know where that bridge use to be. I live around this area.
If you drive to the river access just outside Moselle the last right hand turn just before you get to the parking lot you'll see a pile of dirt on the left of the curve blocking an old rd that leads to where the bridge use to cross.
If you take a boat up the Bourbeuse riverfrom the boat ramp. You'll see the old stone piers along each side of the river.
That's the only bridge I know of that crossed the Bourbeuse river in that area.
here's the lat and long 38.398275 -90.894563