4 votes

Beatty Mills Bridge


Historical Plaque

Photo taken by Brian McKee in January 2, 2009


BH Photo #131232


Bowstring pony truss bridge over Buffalo Creek on TR 659
Armstrong County, Pennsylvania
Replaced with concrete bridge in 2008, trusses in storage
Built ca. 1875 by the Wrought Iron Bridge Co
- Wrought Iron Bridge Co. of Canton, Ohio
Bowstring pony truss
Span length: 86.0 ft.
Total length: 86.0 ft.
Deck width: 14.0 ft.
Eligible for the National Register of Historic Places
Approximate latitude, longitude
+40.80167, -79.64833   (decimal degrees)
40°48'06" N, 79°38'54" W   (degrees°minutes'seconds")
Approximate UTM coordinates
17/614018/4517619 (zone/easting/northing)
Quadrangle map:
Average daily traffic (as of 2007)
Inventory numbers
PA 03 7215 0659 0002 (Pennsylvania Bridge Management System number)
PANBI 44386 (Pennsylvania BRKEY bridge number on the 2011 NBI)
BH 30333 (Bridgehunter.com ID)
Inspection report (as of June 2017)
Overall condition: Good
Superstructure condition rating: Very Good (8 out of 9)
Substructure condition rating: Good (7 out of 9)
Deck condition rating: Very Good (8 out of 9)
Sufficiency rating: 100 (out of 100)
View more at BridgeReports.com

Update Log 

  • August 14, 2009: Updated by Ian Anderson: Updated from forum info
  • January 4, 2009: Updated by Brian McKee



Beatty Mills Bridge
Posted March 5, 2017, by Art S. (asuckewer [at] knite [dot] com)

Hi Mike,

The bridge remains in disassembled storage. However, when it is restored, it is intended to be erected in NJ. Hopefully it will be ready when you do a bridge tour of eastern PA and western NJ.


Art S.

Beatty Mills Bridge
Posted March 5, 2017, by Mike Garland (rapier342 [at] comcast [dot] net)

Greetings Art,

I was just wondering how things were going with this bridge. My wife and I are planning to be out in SW Pennsylvania this summer on a bridge tour and would love to add this to our list of bridges to see. Thanks.



Beatty Mills Bridge
Posted December 3, 2014, by ArtS (asuckewer [at] knite [dot] com)

Hi Julie,

Thank you for letting me know where you and I stand. I'm sorry we were unable to work together thus far. However, the bridge is safe. Hopefully, by not having to worry about this bridge, a slot will free up for you to save another bridge that would otherwise be scrapped.


The bridge remains in storage while certain paperwork is addressed.


Art S.

Beatty Mills Bridge
Posted December 3, 2014, by Julie Bowers (jbowerz1 [at] gmail [dot] com )

Ask Art S. He beat our Workin' Bridges bid. Silly me for suggesting we get it for him and for announcing we wanted it. I don't disclose on here anymore. We would have had it restored and would have already found a home for it but it still sits in the weeds.



Beatty Mills Bridge
Posted December 2, 2014, by Joseph

Wondering if there is any activity going on with this bridge?

Beatty Mills Bridge
Posted March 8, 2014, by Julie Bowers (jbowerz1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

Congratulations to Art Sukewer for winning the bid on this bridge from Armstrong County. I didn't see that coming, we wanted this bridge and are extremely fortunate that Armstrong County preserved it.

It's tough in this business to make the right decisions. After three years Nels Raynor and I bid on this bridge on behalf of NSRGA/W'B, with both of our signatures signifying that we had the financial and technical experience to find a home for a bowstring.

We had hoped to restore and be able to figure out real costs and installation for this bridge as a real example and a potential revenue stream for bridge preservation. This would help us market to more diverse places with real prices, schedules and help with funding.

We move on. Nels has joined the board of NSRGA and we have a lot of projects in the planning stage, construction phases and waiting to work stages.

Beatty Mills Bridge
Posted January 2, 2014, by Julie Bowers (jbowerz1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

We have a formal offer in to the county for this bridge. We have offered to go get it, dismantle and transport, restore and market for sale.

I think that is pretty cool. We'll see how it works out. As a nonprofit dedicated to saving these structures we have to figure out all possible revenue streams. From consultant and contractor, to purveyor, it ALL fits our mission.

Grateful to be starting out strong this year with Nels Raynor at BACH. We have several projects that may come to fruition, bridges like this that are affordable to preserve and sell and install, and three years under our belt. It makes a difference. Workin' Bridges...

Happy New Year Ya'll.


Attachment #1 (application/pdf; 4,553,004 bytes)

Beatty Mills Bridge
Posted November 20, 2013, by Art S. (asuckewer [at] knite [dot] com)


If the locals don't want it, I'm interested. I can take it and store it until sufficient funding is available to restore it, or if there are creative solutions towards funding/restoration I'll gladly give it a permanent home!


Art S.

Beatty Mills Bridge
Posted November 20, 2013, by Julie Bowers (jbowerz1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

Well we just offered this bridge. I shall buy it and find a new home. Been sitting in a lot for five years.

And the Penn dot historian said they needed a group likevours to aid the groups that want these. And maybe could we present at BiWays. Asked to present in alabama too.

Hey Art would this bridgevwork for you?

We are changing things for the better.

Beatty Mills Bridge
Posted August 15, 2009, by Anthony Dillon (spansaver [at] hotmail [dot] com)

Well!.......I guess there is hope for the Asinine (See previous posts for this bridge) world of PennDOT. It sounds like this was one man's efforts that saved the bridge. I guess if they would have noted their intentions on the hysterical (yes I spelled it right) marker, we (OK....mainly I) could have saved that tirade for another time. I don't need my blood pressure soaring like that for naught!

.....I know.....I'm giving PennDOT way too much credit.

Beatty Mills Bridge
Posted August 14, 2009, by Ian Anderson (macsignals [at] gmail [dot] com)

Thanks Chris- I've updated the listing to reflect that article.

Beatty Mills Bridge
Posted August 14, 2009, by Chris Fleming (flemingcj [at] embarqmail [dot] com)


Check this link out - according to that they have saved the old bridge ....

Beatty Mills Bridge
Posted January 17, 2009, by Ian Anderson (macsignals [at] gmail [dot] com)

I just found a PDF on PennDOT's District 10 webpage that highlights this bridge's replacement:


It appears the new UCEBs are/were on the repair list! Shows how long they last!

Beatty Mills Bridge
Posted January 8, 2009, by Don

Had to post again, it is just UNREAL what they did!

Beatty Mills Bridge
Posted January 7, 2009, by Wayne Kizziar (wayne1701 [at] cableone [dot] net)

To replace a classic bowstring with this hideously ugly slab is unforgivable. I agree with Anthony, definitely asinine.

Beatty Mills Bridge
Posted January 7, 2009, by Ian Anderson (macsignals [at] gmail [dot] com)

If PennDOT has their way, every bridge in PA will be a UCEB before we know it. Thankfully, that kind of money isn't available, and their reports show they have been rehabilitating some trusses out in central PA.

Yet, a 134 year old bowstring truss, that was perfectly fine, maybe needed a paint job? C'mon PennDOT! Now that bridge is sent somewhere overseas for scrap no doubt, and someone's profiting off the steel/iron, which should be illegal. It's bad enough they do that to more modern riveted truss bridges, but this is, I think Anthony described it best, Asinine.

It's for this reason, wasteful spending, that PennDOT is crying out for help to the Turnpike Commission! However as long as someone is profiting off the steel scrap, or as long as the concrete guys are in it w/ PennDOT, this will continue.

Beatty Mills Bridge
Posted January 6, 2009, by anthony dillon (spansaver [at] hotmail [dot] com)

Yeah....I get pretty incensed when I see an indignant act carried out on a landmark that is now lost forever. There are so many hiking and biking trails going up now, that there is no reason the bridge couldn't be reused. Someone asked me if Asinine was the proper term to use in my previous comment, so I will give the definition and let you decide.

ASININE-marked by inexcusable failure to exercise intelligence or sound judgment.

Fits well....I think!


Beatty Mills Bridge - Standards Rant
Posted January 6, 2009, by Michael Goff (michael [dot] goff [at] odot [dot] state [dot] or [dot] us)

I would have to agree with the previous post. I don't know how effective a "tombstone" for a destroyed bridge can be, especially one that describes the theory of the design with no actual structure to look at.

It is always sad to see an interesting structure lost to the over standardized style of bridge design of today. How long will it be until all the bridges will be standardized Bulb-T, I, and Pre-cast slab bridges? While theses bridge styles have their place on the mundane highways systems, what is the problem with spending a little extra in retrofiting and unique designs to bring some romance back to the world in the proper locations?

Famed bridge engineer Conde McCullough said it best…

"From the dawn of civilization up to the present, engineers have been busily engaged in ruining this fair earth and taking all the romance out of it.”

Beatty Mills Bridge
Posted January 5, 2009, by anthony dillon (spansaver [at] hotmail [dot] com)

Would somebody in Pennsylvania please tell PENNDOT that destroying a 130 year old historic bridge, and then putting up a plaque telling how proud they are of what they did is...........ASININE.

Beatty Mills Bridge
Posted January 5, 2009, by Don

Wow, that new bridge looks awful!

Beatty Mills Bridge
Posted January 4, 2009, by Ian Anderson (macsignals [at] gmail [dot] com)

Here's the page over on Historicbridges.org w/ a further description/pictures:


And people wonder why I say I hate PennDOT, they can't keep their roads maintained yet they demolish so many useful bridges.