2 votes

Pulp Mill Bridge


Pulp Mill Bridge

Distant shot

Photo taken by Michael Quiet in August 2017


BH Photo #400621


This is an abandoned and unadulterated vertical end post whipple truss. There isn't a lot of specifics to go on, information wise. The build date is assumed that this was contemporary with the other whipple truss further down on the line, which makes sense as the paper mill that this spur served was originally established in 1868. This bridge was bypassed in 1921, and looks to have been serving pipes and road traffic after that.


Abandoned Whipple through truss bridge
Berlin, Coos County, New Hampshire
Built circa 1868; Bypassed 1921
- Phoenix Iron Works of Phoenixville, Pennsylvania
- Berlin Mills Railway (BMS)
Whipple through truss with vertical endposts
Total length: 160.0 ft.
Approximate latitude, longitude
+44.47597, -71.16929   (decimal degrees)
44°28'33" N, 71°10'09" W   (degrees°minutes'seconds")
Approximate UTM coordinates
19/327474/4927028 (zone/easting/northing)
Quadrangle map:
Inventory number
BH 78159 (Bridgehunter.com ID)

Update Log 

  • December 28, 2017: Updated by Dana and Kay Klein: Added category "Othmar H. Ammann Nominee"
  • August 23, 2017: New photos from Michael Quiet
  • August 22, 2017: Added by Michael Quiet


  • Michael Quiet - mquiet [at] gmail [dot] com


Pulp Mill Bridge
Posted October 31, 2017, by othmar (othmar)

..................obviously, but which category ?...........

Pulp Mill Bridge
Posted August 23, 2017, by Art S. (asuckewer [at] knite [dot] com)


Yes, you are correct, however the Wisconsin bridge is kind of in it's own category with regular sloped end posts that seems to have vertical end posts tacked on so that the tension members could be evenly spaced. I don't know the history or detail of the Ohio bridge.

My thought is that vertal end posts, as a standard design element, largely disappeared together with cast iron main structural elements around 1875. I consider the three I listed as closer to the remaining Fink and Bollman through trusses than the other two you listed. I'm not sure how to differentiated them. Maybe we call them 'first period' or something else to distinguish them.

We may be splitting hairs, the important thing is to celebrate this bridge's existence. I'm curious about it's history. I suspect it didn't start it's life at it's present location.

BTW, there is at least one 'first period' (by my definition) American made, vertical end post Whipple in existence outside the US.


Art S.

Pulp Mill Bridge
Posted August 23, 2017, by Nathan Holth (webmaster [at] historicbridges [dot] org)

A very impressive and utterly shocking find! Is this bridge available? Who owns it? As Art suggests this is an exceedingly rare bridge... although my count of vertical end post Whipple's (even if we exclude the in-storage Mead Avenue Bridge) is at least four including this one. The others that come to mind are: Riverside Avenue Bridge in CT, Ellis Bridge in Ohio, Dunnville Bottoms Bridge in Wisconsin.

Pulp Mill Bridge
Posted August 23, 2017, by Tony Dillon (spansaver [at] hotmail [dot] com)

Great find Michael! Love the Ribbon-lacing of the lower chord!

Pulp Mill Bridge
Posted August 23, 2017, by Art S. (asuckewer [at] knite [dot] com)


You're on quite a roll, wow! This it the third vertical endpost Whipple known to still exist in the US and the oldest! One each: Phoenix Column, Keystone Column and cast iron column!

Very cool!


Art S.

Pulp Mill Bridge
Posted August 23, 2017, by Dana

Another day another 1860's bridge..Did I really just say that? Think Roberts WOW just WOW is appropriate .