Roger Deschner

About Me 

Email: rogerdeschner [at] gmail [dot] com

I am a lifelong amateur photographer and incurable tourist who has pointed my camera at a number of bridges along the way. Some of my pictures of bridges have accidentally become historic, as the bridges have been destroyed or altered since I photographed them. I am currently focusing on bridges in the Chicago area.

Favorite Photos 

< Previous   (1 of 10)   Next >

Black Hawk Bridge at sunset

Black Hawk Bridge (Allamakee County, Iowa)

Enlarge

< Previous   (2 of 10)   Next >

View from southwest, ground level

Archer Avenue Bridge (Cook County, Illinois)
This close up view from the southwest at ground level highlights the incredibly intricate design of this bridge.

Enlarge

< Previous   (3 of 10)   Next >

Aerial view of bridge

San Diego - Coronado Bridge (San Diego County, California)
Photo taken from commercial jetliner. Looking north, Coronado Island is at lower left; Downtown San Diego is at upper left.

Enlarge

< Previous   (4 of 10)   Next >

Cupcakes

Fort Morgan Rainbow Arch Bridge (Morgan County, Colorado)
Freshly fallen snow is frosting on the arches like a double row of cupcakes. Snow on the deck makes for nice shadows too. View from north portal.

Enlarge

< Previous   (5 of 10)   Next >

...and then a train came and crossed it!

UP - Tiffany Stone Arch Bridge (Rock County, Wisconsin)
I heard a train whistle in the distance, so I waited. What great luck to have that train come along while I was there!
< Previous   (6 of 10)   Next >

View from southeast

NCRC - South Loup River Bridge (Howard County, Nebraska)

Enlarge

< Previous   (7 of 10)   Next >

View from southwest

Wells Street Bridge (Cook County, Illinois)
View from southwest with Brown Line train crossing on top deck. The grey south leaf has already been replaced, and the red north leaf is awaiting replacement.

Enlarge

< Previous   (8 of 10)   Next >

South Portal

Nine Span Bridge (Lake County, Indiana)
January 13, 2013 was a very somber, grey day. Somehow an appropriate benediction as the bridge carried traffic for its last full day.

Enlarge

< Previous   (9 of 10)   Next >

South Portal Traffic

Arsenal Bridge (Scott County, Iowa)
Train enters south portal, while a car exits underneath the train.

Enlarge

< Previous   (10 of 10)   Next >

Bridge before collapse

I-35W Mississippi River Bridge (Hennepin County, Minnesota)
View from above, from a high floor of the hotel southeast of the bridge. Picture taken just 4 years before the collapse. Same view of new bridge in Photo 44 at http://bridgehunter.com/mn/hennepin/bh49737/

Enlarge

Recent Updates 

Rifle Bridge (Garfield County, Colorado)
Closed two-span through truss bridge over the Colorado River at Rifle
March 6, 2021: New photos
Turtleville Iron Bridge (Rock County, Wisconsin)
Pratt through truss bridge over Turtle Creek on Lathers Road
March 6, 2021: New photos
South Smith Road Bridge (Rock County, Wisconsin)
Single lane Pratt through truss bridge formerly over Turtle Creek on South Smith Road
March 6, 2021: Updated by Roger Deschner: Bridge has been relocated and replaced
South Smith Road Bridge (Relocated) (Rock County, Wisconsin)
Pratt through truss bridge over unnamed creek on snowmobile trail
March 6, 2021: Updated by Roger Deschner: Added, with photos
South Smith Road Bridge (Relocated) (Rock County, Wisconsin)
Pratt through truss bridge over unnamed creek on snowmobile trail
March 6, 2021: New photos
South Smith Road Bridge (Relocated) (Rock County, Wisconsin)
Pratt through truss bridge over unnamed creek on snowmobile trail
March 6, 2021: Added
BNSF - Chicago Sanitary and Ship Canal Bridge (Lemont) (Cook County, Illinois)
Swing through truss bridge over Chicago Sanitary and Ship Canal on BNSF Railway
March 6, 2021: New photos
UP - Sweetwater Tunnel (Eagle County, Colorado)
Tunnel on Union Pacific Railroad
March 6, 2021: New Street View added
Mississippi River Headwater Foot Bridge (Clearwater County, Minnesota)
Timber stringer bridge over Mississippi River, which is itself a pedestrian pathway here, on pedpestian pathway
March 3, 2021: Updated by Roger Deschner: Added, with photos and street view
Mississippi River Headwater Foot Bridge (Clearwater County, Minnesota)
Timber stringer bridge over Mississippi River, which is itself a pedestrian pathway here, on pedpestian pathway
March 3, 2021: New Street View added
Mississippi River Headwater Foot Bridge (Clearwater County, Minnesota)
Timber stringer bridge over Mississippi River, which is itself a pedestrian pathway here, on pedpestian pathway
March 3, 2021: New photo
Mississippi River Headwater Foot Bridge (Clearwater County, Minnesota)
Timber stringer bridge over Mississippi River, which is itself a pedestrian pathway here, on pedpestian pathway
March 3, 2021: Added
MN-200 Mississippi River Bridge (Clearwater County, Minnesota)
Steel stringer bridge over Mississippi River on MN 200
March 3, 2021: New Street View added
Old Wood Algoma Bridge (Kewaunee County, Wisconsin)
Lost Bridge over Ahnapee River on 2nd Street
March 3, 2021: Updated by Roger Deschner: Added categories "Kingpost truss", "Multiple Kingpost truss"
BN - Winona Bridge (Winona County, Minnesota)
Lost through truss bridge over Mississippi River on Winona Bridge Railway (later BN RR)
February 25, 2021: Updated by Roger Deschner: Add description to cllarify ownership(s)
NYNJ Bay Ridge Car Float Bridge (Kings County, New York)
Pony/through plate girder bridge over New York Harbor on rail car float
February 25, 2021: Updated by Roger Deschner: Addeed catefory "Ferry"; added description and link to official website
NYNJ Bay Ridge Car Float Bridge (Kings County, New York)
Pony/through plate girder bridge over New York Harbor on rail car float
February 25, 2021: Updated by Roger Deschner: Added categories "Ferry", "Port Authority of NY&NJ"
Rock Island Trail Cattle Pass (Jackson County, Missouri)
Cattle pass culvert beneath the Rock Island Railroad
February 25, 2021: New Street View added
Royal Gorge - Hanging Bridge (Fremont County, Colorado)
Pony/through plate girder bridge over Edge of Arkansas River on Rock & Rail LLC/Cañon City & Royal Gorge Railroad
February 19, 2021: New video
Cline Avenue Bridge (New) (Lake County, Indiana)
Two-lane concrete segmental box girder bridge over Indiana Harbor & Ship Canal on Cline Avenue (Indiana State Route 912)
January 23, 2021: Updated by Roger Deschner: Bridge is only 2 lanes wide; add Description
Stony Point State Park Bridge (Rockland County, New York)
Deck plate girder bridge over CSX Railroad on Battlefield Road
January 6, 2021: Updated by Roger Deschner: Updated build date to 1908, based on archway cornerstone
Stony Point State Park Bridge (Rockland County, New York)
Deck plate girder bridge over CSX Railroad on Battlefield Road
January 6, 2021: New photo
Ford City Drive Overpass (Cook County, Illinois)
Concrete frame bridge over S. Pulaski Road (Crawford Avenue) on Ford City Drive (W. 77th St., Keller Dr.) in Chicago
December 28, 2020: Updated by Roger Deschner: Photos added of demolition underway
Clarence Darrow Memorial Bridge (Cook County, Illinois)
Steel stringer bridge over Jackson Park North Lagoon on Columbia Drive
December 28, 2020: Updated by Roger Deschner: Updated delayed rebuilding plans, and added photos
Clarence Darrow Memorial Bridge (Cook County, Illinois)
Steel stringer bridge over Jackson Park North Lagoon on Columbia Drive
December 28, 2020: Updated by Roger Deschner: Updated delayed rebuilding plans
Clarence Darrow Memorial Bridge (Cook County, Illinois)
Steel stringer bridge over Jackson Park North Lagoon on Columbia Drive
December 28, 2020: New photos
Ford City Drive Overpass (Cook County, Illinois)
Concrete frame bridge over S. Pulaski Road (Crawford Avenue) on Ford City Drive (W. 77th St., Keller Dr.) in Chicago
December 28, 2020: New photos
Ford City Drive Overpass (Cook County, Illinois)
Concrete frame bridge over S. Pulaski Road (Crawford Avenue) on Ford City Drive (W. 77th St., Keller Dr.) in Chicago
December 28, 2020: Updated by Roger Deschner: Bridge under demolition
Benjamin Harrison Memorial Bridge (Prince George County, Virginia)
Vertical lift bridge over James River on VA 156
December 28, 2020: New photo
Jamestown-Scotland Ferry (James City County, Virginia)
Ferry across James River on VA-31
December 28, 2020: New photos
US2 Viaduct (Flathead County, Montana)
Concrete tee beam bridge over BNSF Railway (rouote of Amtrak Empire Builder) on US 2
December 28, 2020: Updated by Roger Deschner: Added google street view; merged NBI data
US2 Viaduct (Flathead County, Montana)
Concrete tee beam bridge over BNSF Railway (rouote of Amtrak Empire Builder) on US 2
December 28, 2020: New Street View added
Bidwell Bar Bridge (1965) (Butte County, California)
Suspension bridge over Middle Fork Feather River on CA-162
December 9, 2020: Updated by Roger Deschner: Added category "Curved". South approach span is curved, passing under the west main cable
Albany Covered Bridge 29-02-06 (Carroll County, New Hampshire)
Covered bridge over Swift River on Passaconaway Road in Albany
December 2, 2020: New photo
Albany Covered Bridge 29-02-06 (Carroll County, New Hampshire)
Covered bridge over Swift River on Passaconaway Road in Albany
December 2, 2020: Updated by Roger Deschner: Road name is Passaconaway Road, per Google and NBI.
Waterford Bridge (Dakota County, Minnesota)
Through truss bridge over Cannon River on CR 166 Canada Ave.
November 10, 2020: Updated by Roger Deschner: Added category "Jack Arch Deck"
Sachs Covered Bridge 38-01-01 (Adams County, Pennsylvania)
Through truss bridge over Marsh Creek on Waterworks Road
October 25, 2020: Updated by Roger Deschner: Added category "Haunted"
Market Street Bridge (Jefferson County, Ohio)
Suspension bridge over the Ohio River on WV 2 Spur (Market Street) in Steubenville
September 26, 2020: Updated by Roger Deschner: Added to NRHP
Market Street Bridge (Jefferson County, Ohio)
Suspension bridge over the Ohio River on WV 2 Spur (Market Street) in Steubenville
September 26, 2020: Updated by Roger Deschner: Added to NRHP
Dunkard Mill Bridge (Cowley County, Kansas)
Lost Stone arch bridge over Walnut River on 272nd Road
September 26, 2020: Updated by Roger Deschner: Added with photo
Dunkard Mill Bridge (Cowley County, Kansas)
Lost Stone arch bridge over Walnut River on 272nd Road
September 25, 2020: New photo
Dunkard Mill Bridge (Cowley County, Kansas)
Lost Stone arch bridge over Walnut River on 272nd Road
September 25, 2020: Added
NYC - Gauley River Bridge (Fayette County, West Virginia)
Abandoned through truss bridge over Gauley River on former New York Central Railroad
September 16, 2020: New photo
CSX - Stretchers Neck Tunnel (Fayette County, West Virginia)
Tunnel under unknown ridge, CR 25 (McKendree Rd.) on CSX Railroad at Prince
September 16, 2020: Updated by Roger Deschner: Added category "Amtrak"
US98 Pensacola Bay Bridge (Santa Rosa County, Florida)
Lost Concrete stringer bridge over Pensacola Bay on US 98
September 16, 2020: Updated by Roger Deschner: New replacement bridge destroyed by hurricane Sally
Pamunkey River Bridge (King William County, Virginia)
Bascule Bridge on VA 30 & 33 /14th St. over Pamunkey River
September 8, 2020: New photo
Goddins Pond Dam (New Kent County, Virginia)
Slab bridge atop dam over Philbates Creek on VA 600 Holly Fork Road
September 7, 2020: Updated by Roger Deschner: Added with photos
Goddins Pond Dam (New Kent County, Virginia)
Slab bridge atop dam over Philbates Creek on VA 600 Holly Fork Road
September 7, 2020: New photos
Goddins Pond Dam (New Kent County, Virginia)
Slab bridge atop dam over Philbates Creek on VA 600 Holly Fork Road
September 7, 2020: Added
Pamunkey River Bridge (King William County, Virginia)
Bascule Bridge on VA 30 & 33 /14th St. over Pamunkey River
September 7, 2020: Updated by Roger Deschner: Add construction date, other info

Recent Comments 

Posted March 6, 2021

I have done as Luke advised, and created a new entry for the relocated bridge. It is linked in "Related Bridges".

Posted March 3, 2021

A 7-span kingpost pony truss - never seen anything else quite like this bridge. All wood, expect for (presumably) wrought iron tension hangars.

Posted February 19, 2021

What I want to see in Long Grove, is somebody with a webcam aimed at the bridge, so they can record all the crashes, and post them on YouTube. Not only could they turn the miscreants in to the authorities, but it could also be very entertaining. Just like all those hilarious videos from that 11'8" RR underpass in Durham NC.

Posted February 12, 2021

Another covered bridge that has "been through the ringer and back" is in Philippi WV (BH 36774). After its last fire in 1989 (which was accidental, not arson), it was rebuilt with a fire sprinkler system. That was practical in Philippi because it's in a town with a water system. That may not be practical for bridges like Plummer Creek, which are in remote rural locations, having neither a municipal water system, nor even electricity to pump water out of the creek.

Posted January 29, 2021

Looks like revival is moving along, and trains may once again go through the Tennessee Pass Tunnel.

Union Pacific has been using only its Moffat Tunnel and Wyoming routes for quite a while now, so it doesn't really need Tennessee Pass. The Tennessee Pass line has steeper grades and higher elevation, compared to the Moffat line. If Colorado Midland & Pacific can run passenger trains through Tennessee Pass, I'd like to be on board that train.

https://trn.trains.com/news/news-wire/2020/12/31-rio-grande-...

Posted January 21, 2021

Toll free through January 31. Discounted $1 toll for all of February with EZPass/I-pass. Time for a little joyride on a very high bridge with a great view of steel mills and Lake Michigan.

Posted January 6, 2021

NBI says the bridge was built in 1985, but I just posted a photo of it I took in 1983. It's clearly the same bridge.

The cornerstone of the archway shows a date of 1908. The bridge was likely put there as part of the same project. It may have been provided by the NY Central RR as their contribution to the battlefield park. They might have found a surplus plate girder bridge in their inventory, cut it down to the length needed, and put it in over their tracks. It's previous use may have been to carry trains, suggested by its massive structure. It's narrow width and state of deterioration also suggests a 113 year old structure, not a 36 year old one.

Looking for more historical background on this one. Perhaps in the archives of the NY State Parks.

As for the future, it appears to just need a really good coat of paint.

Posted January 6, 2021

I grew up in the area in the 1960s. It was the same long weekend wait times back then. As a young kid, the ferry boat ride was a big thrill, so sometimes we'd ride over just to turn around and ride back.

Posted December 28, 2020

Bridge reconstruction, planned since 2017, is still on hold. Funding for a pedestrian-only replacement bridge has apparently already been secured by the city. Chicago Department of Transportation says, "The design process is taking longer than expected due to the historic nature of the bridge."

Notable historic parts that need to be preserved, are the original railings, the jack-arch design of the deck, and the limestone abutments. These abutments are historic in that they incorporate support for both this bridge, and a previous bridge at this location. They are in good enough condition to carry pedestrians and an occasional emergency vehicle. The deteriorated limestone wingwalls are not load-bearing, and could be repaired easily. The only part that has become compromised is the steel superstructure.

I can only speculate, that with the bitter controversy surrounding the proposed nearby Obama Center and massive expansion of the golf course, that now any change within historic Jackson Park is being scrutinized extremely carefully and publicly. That includes this NR-contributing bridge, which must now undergo full historic-site review at neighborhood council, city, state, and federal levels, along with the rest of Jackson Park. There may be further long delays. A strategy to repair rather then replace this bridge may become expedient, as the controversy involving the whole park continues.

Posted December 28, 2020

Notable for a bridge this new (built 1966, rebuilt 1978), is the extensive use of built-up lattice members. Built-up members using V-lacing or lattice, are rarely seen this recently, except for historical purposes. After about 1950, it became less expensive to use a single piece of flat, rolled steel, with oval cut-out holes. I wonder if this older, more costly construction method was used to reduce the weight of the lift span. Royce and Bobette Haley's excellent photos here show the latticework very well.

My observation regarding Nathan Holth's comment about a mixture of bolted and riveted connections after the 1977 accident, is that many steel bridges of the 1960s era were originally built with a combination of riveted and bolted connections. (See 1967 La Grange Road Bridge near Chicago at https://historicbridges.org/bridges/browser/?bridgebrowser=i... for more about this transition era.)

To get a vantage point to photograph this bridge, I went to the marina to its southeast. After buying a soda and securing permission to walk out on their dock, the marina store clerk said that this bridge was "quite a pain" because it frequently became stuck in the raised position. As in the 1977 accident, a long detour is required, on either the Jamestown-Scotland Ferry to the east, or I-295 to the west.

Posted December 9, 2020

The dramatic photo of the Bidwell Bar Bridge, taken in September by AP photographer Noah Berger, of fires raging around the bridge, has now been featured again. In the New York Times "2020 The Year in Pictures", this was the top picture for September. In this article, Noah tells about taking this photo of the bridge, and about covering other aspects of that time for AP.

This photo, taken by a professional photojournalist for AP, could be 2020's most dramatic bridge photo. It captures one of the year's most significant events in a single image. A pity it's too late to enter it into the best bridge photos contest at Bridgehunter Chronicles.

Look at it here at NYTimes, because it's copyrighted. https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2020/world/year-in-pictu...

Posted December 2, 2020

What a find, while going through old family photos on color slides. My father photographed this bridge in 1952, with my mother standing by watching a period pickup truck cross the bridge. The sign at the left clearly points across the bridge to "Passaconaway", which is now mostly a ghost town located along route NH-112 (Kankamagus Highway) west of Conway NH. That sign definitely identifies where this picture was taken, and which bridge this is.

Since this is the east portal, and the sun is shining on the bridge deck itself, this picture was taken at about mid-morning.

This 1952 picture also shows that arson of wooden bridges is not a new phenomenon! Fortunately the fire didn't cause extreme damage, though that may be why it had no siding in 1952. The substructure was apparently not damaged at all. The lack of siding really shows off the Paddleford truss design in this photo.

I also changed the name of the road that crosses the bridge to Passaconaway Road, per NBI and Google maps.

(Picture that would have been here is now #41 above.)

TV crew narrowly escapes as Hiddenite Bridge collapses on live TV
Posted November 13, 2020

This TV crew was on the Hiddenite Bridge in Alexander County NC on live TV when its approach suddenly gave way, giving them quite a scare. This was caused by the remains of Hurricane Eta. Watch it happen. Turn the sound up.

https://twitter.com/AmberFOX46/status/1327044528205869056

Though it is 72 years old, the Hiddenite Bridge only became notable by collapsing. NCDOT says, "The Cheatham Ford Road bridge over the South Yadkin River was built in 1948 and last inspected Oct. 23. The overall structure of the bridge is still intact, but the approach leading to the bridge has been washed out."

Posted November 10, 2020

In the new second photo, it looks like a kingpost truss was added after construction to strengthen the bridge. That is not in the first photo.

Posted October 27, 2020

Great added photos! In the first photo, this bridge appears to have one distinctive feature: a (somewhat lazy) guard dog.