Jason Smith

About Me 

Email: flensburg [dot] bridgehunter [dot] av [at] googlemail [dot] com

I became fascinated with bridges when I was five years old, mainly because where I grew up, Jackson County, MN, we had plenty of metal truss bridges to go around. This includes the Petersburg Road Bridge which was located in the south end of town just north of where my grandma used to live. I became fascinated with the different designs and the history of each structure that I started photographing the structures at a young age, 13 to be exact. In addition to that, I also wrote some commentaries on the bridges and conducted some presentations on them, the former of which I still do for this website, as well as Nathan Holth's website.

Since a lot of these bridges are disappearing, I have been active in photographing them as long as they are still standing. Furthermore, I have an online column that is devoted to this topic through the Bridgehunter's Chronicles, which started in 2010 and has become popular ever since. I also have some book projects in the making both big and small dealing with these structures in certain regions, including Iowa (where I have been really active in that area). Originally from Minnesota, I've ben residing in Germany since 1999, where I'm an English lecturer/trainer and have a wife and 6-year old daughter, who might have the same interest as I do in the future, the way we've been travelling around since she came around. ;-)

Recent Updates 

Lilleberg Bridge (Jackson County, Minnesota)
Stringer bridge over Des Moines River on Csah 16
March 8, 2017: Updated by Jason Smith: Added category "Central States Bridge Co."
Elk River Bridge (Clay County, West Virginia)
Through truss bridge over Elk River on CR 4/5
February 2, 2017: Updated by Jason Smith: To be replaced in 2017. Old bridge will remain in place as a pedestrian bridge
Dobbins Creek Crossing (Mower County, Minnesota)
Girder bridge over Dobbins Creek on Oakland Ave
January 29, 2017: Updated by Jason Smith: Currently being replaced. New bridge to open by May 2017
US 71 West Fork Des Moines River Bridge (Jackson County, Minnesota)
Steel stringer bridge over West Fork Des Moines River on US 71 in Jackson
January 3, 2017: Updated by Jason Smith: This bridge has been replaced. New span now open.
Dodd Ford Bridge (Blue Earth County, Minnesota)
Through truss bridge over Blue Earth River on CR 147
November 9, 2016: Updated by Jason Smith: Bridge has been rehabilitated and reopened to traffic since July 2016
Bonnie Doon Crossing (Lyon County, Iowa)
Abandoned pratt through truss bridge over Rock River on Grant Avenue
August 15, 2016: Updated by Jason Smith: Updated the bridge's information
Bonnie Doon Crossing (Lyon County, Iowa)
Abandoned pratt through truss bridge over Rock River on Grant Avenue
August 15, 2016: Updated by Jason Smith: Added categories "A-frame portal", "Riveted", "Wooden deck", "Chicago, St. Paul, Minneapolis & Omaha Railway", "Relocated"
Chambers Ford Bridge (Tama County, Iowa)
Pratt through truss bridge over Iowa River on 380th Street
August 8, 2016: Updated by Jason Smith: This bridge is doomed. To be replaced by a new structure and removed once the new bridge opens
Wolf Creek Bridge (Woodbury County, Iowa)
Pony truss bridge over Wolf Creek on CR K67 (Hancock Avenue)
July 5, 2016: Updated by Jason Smith: Replaced
Wolf Creek Bridge (Woodbury County, Iowa)
Through truss bridge over Wolf Creek on 290th Street
July 5, 2016: Updated by Jason Smith: Replaced
Lincoln Highway/Jefferson Highway Colo Interchange (Story County, Iowa)
Steel stringer bridge over Over Us 65 on Co Rd E-41 (old Lincoln Highway)
June 22, 2016: New photos
South River Bridge (Warren County, Iowa)
Lost through truss bridge over South River on Elk Horn Street
June 3, 2016: Updated by Jason Smith: Removed
235th Trail Bridge (Harrison County, Iowa)
Pony truss bridge over Willow Creek on 235th Trail
May 21, 2016: Updated by Jason Smith: This bridge has been replaced
235th Street Bridge (Harrison County, Iowa)
Pony truss bridge over Allen Creek on 235th Street
May 21, 2016: Updated by Jason Smith: This bridge has been replaced
180th Street Bridge (Harrison County, Iowa)
Pony truss bridge over South Picayune Creek on 180th Street
May 21, 2016: Updated by Jason Smith: This bridge has been replaced
145th Trail Bridge (Harrison County, Iowa)
Pony truss bridge over Soldier River on 145th Trail
May 21, 2016: Updated by Jason Smith: Removed
Willow River Bridge (Harrison County, Iowa)
Pony truss bridge over Willow River on 291st Street
May 21, 2016: Updated by Jason Smith: Removed
Vienna Avenue Bridge (Harrison County, Iowa)
Pony truss bridge over Pigeon Creek on Vienna Avenue
May 21, 2016: Updated by Jason Smith: This bridge has been replaced
Stowe Creek Bridge (Harrison County, Iowa)
Pony truss bridge over Stowe Creek on 340th Street
May 21, 2016: Updated by Jason Smith: Removed
Potato Creek Bridge (Pottawattamie County, Iowa)
Pony truss bridge over Potato Creek on CR L34 (York Road)
May 21, 2016: Updated by Jason Smith: This bridge has been replaced
US 71 West Fork Des Moines River Bridge (Jackson County, Minnesota)
Steel stringer bridge over West Fork Des Moines River on US 71 in Jackson
May 3, 2016: Updated by Jason Smith: Bridge is being demolished. Closed since May 2nd to proceed with project
Nishnabotna River Bridge (Cass County, Iowa)
Through truss bridge over Nishnabotna River on Fair River Road
April 7, 2016: Updated by Jason Smith: This bridge has been removed
West Nishnabotna River Bridge (Fremont County, Iowa)
Through truss bridge over West Nishnabotna River on CR J22 (150 Street)
April 7, 2016: Updated by Jason Smith: Gone. Replaced by an ugly worthless POS made of concrete
Bunker Mill Bridge (Washington County, Iowa)
Pratt through truss bridge over English River on Nutmeg Avenue
April 4, 2016: Updated by Jason Smith: Updated the status of the bridge and included article
Sewalls Falls Road Bridge (Merrimack County, New Hampshire)
Through truss bridge over Merrimack River on Sewalls Falls Road
April 3, 2016: Updated by Jason Smith: Updated the status of the bridge. Bridge is being replaced.
Niagara River Bridge (Niagara County, New York)
Concrete arch bridge over Niagara River on Goat Is-Green Is in Niagara Falls
January 25, 2016: Updated by Jason Smith: Bridge to be replaced. See comment section for more details.
Niagara River Bridge (Niagara County, New York)
Concrete arch bridge over Niagara River on Mainland Green Is in Niagara Falls
January 25, 2016: Updated by Jason Smith: Bridge to be replaced. See comment section for more details.
Stutsman Street Bridge (Pembina County, North Dakota)
Through truss bridge over Pembina River on Stutsman Street in Pembina
December 29, 2015: New Street View added
Greenfield Bridge (Allegheny County, Pennsylvania)
Open-spandrel arch bridge over Penn Lincoln Parkway East (I-376) on Beechwood Boulevard
December 28, 2015: Updated by Jason Smith: Bridge was brought down by explosives on 28 December, 2015. Steel arch bridge replacement expected to be built.
Yellow River Bridge (Allamakee County, Iowa)
Through truss bridge over Yellow River on Yellow River Drive
December 28, 2015: New Street View added
Rancocas Creek Bridge (Burlington County, New Jersey)
4-span pony truss bridge with swing span over Rancocas Creek on CR 635
December 10, 2015: Updated by Jason Smith: The bridge is scheduled to be demolished. Replacement span likely in the distant future
Old 240th Street Bridge (Harrison County, Iowa)
Abandoned pratt through truss bridge over Creek on old 240th Street alignment
November 30, 2015: Added
East Kelly Lane Bridge (Harrison County, Iowa)
Through truss bridge over Soldier River on E. Kelly Lane
November 29, 2015: Updated by Jason Smith: Bridge has been replaced according to Googlemaps
Green Bridge (Polk County, Iowa)
Three-span through truss bridge over Raccoon River on SW 5th Street in Des Moines
November 24, 2015: Updated by Jason Smith: Adjusted info based on latest news! :-)
B.B. Comer Bridge (Jackson County, Alabama)
Cantilevered Warren through truss bridge over Tennessee River on State Highway 35 at Scottsboro
November 16, 2015: Updated by Jason Smith: In an unexpected move, Jackson Co. officials moved to deny the request for a vote on preserving the bridge and signed off on the demolition contract. Bridge is expected to be removed in 2016
8th Street Bridge (Harrison County, Iowa)
Through truss bridge over Boyer River on 8th Street in Logan
September 18, 2015: New Street View added
DM&E - 6th Street Overpass (Brown County, Minnesota)
Stone arch bridge over 6th Street N on the DM&E Railroad in New Ulm
August 31, 2015: Updated by Jason Smith: Readjusted the GPS coordinates
Rice Creek Bridge (Blue Earth County, Minnesota)
Lost Howe pony truss bridge over Rice Creek on Twp 24
August 28, 2015: Added
Big Slough Bridge (Blue Earth County, Minnesota)
Lost Howe pony truss bridge over Big Slough on Twp 14
August 28, 2015: Added
Clearwater River Bridge (Clearwater County, Minnesota)
Pony truss bridge over Clearwater River on Highway
August 27, 2015: Updated by Jason Smith: Added photos and information
Clearwater River Bridge (Clearwater County, Minnesota)
Pony truss bridge over Clearwater River on Highway
August 27, 2015: New photos
Petersburg Road Bridge (Jackson County, Minnesota)
Lost through truss bridge over West Fork Des Moines River on Petersburg Road in Jackson
August 16, 2015: Updated by Jason Smith: Updated the history of the bridge
190th Avenue Bridge (Kossuth County, Iowa)
Pony truss bridge over Lindsey Creek on 190th Avenue
August 11, 2015: Updated by Jason Smith: Changed the name of the creek: It's Lindsey Creek.
Green Bridge (Hillsborough County, New Hampshire)
Lost through truss bridge over Souhegan River on Bypassed Historic in Milford
July 27, 2015: Updated by Jason Smith: This bridge is doomed. Scheduled for removal for safety reasons
Donora Webster Bridge (Washington County, Pennsylvania)
Through truss bridge over Monongahela River on PA 1022 in Donora and Rostraver Twp
July 1, 2015: Updated by Jason Smith: This bridge is gone- demoed using explosives at 10:00am on 1 July, 2015
East Fork Big Creek CR 687 Bridge (Harrison County, Missouri)
Through truss bridge over East Fork Big Creek on CR 687 in Bethany
May 27, 2015: New Street View added
Blue Ox Trail - Blackduck Trestle (Beltrami County, Minnesota)
Timber Stringer Bridge over Coburn Creek on Blue Ox Trail (Voyager Trail)
April 14, 2015: Updated by Jason Smith: Bridge was damaged substantially by fire. Arson suspected. Closed to all traffic
Hatley Bridge (Madison County, Iowa)
Abandoned pratt through truss bridge over North Fork Clanton Creek on Abandoned County Road
April 8, 2015: Added
Monona-Harrison Ditch Bridge (Monona County, Iowa)
Through truss bridge over Monona-Harrison Ditch on CR E54 (270th Street)
January 29, 2015: Updated by Jason Smith: This bridge and the one over the Little Sioux River are both doomed. Demolition and replacement scheduled to begin as early as February.
I-74 Bridge (Scott County, Iowa)
Pair of suspension bridges over the Mississippi River on I-74 between Bettendorf and Moline
January 24, 2015: New photos

Recent Comments 

Posted June 16, 2017

To the bridge lovers and historians out there: I'm looking for some help. I'm looking for some information on bridges built by the company Raymond and Campbell, as well as additional information on the history of the firm itself. An article has been compiled about the bridge building firm for you to read and contribute. If you have any information on both, plus photos of the bridges built by Raymond and Campbell as well as their agent George C. Wise, please send me a PM or e-mail and I'll be happy to add whatever you have to what I have compiled so far. Thanks for your help. :-) https://bridgehunterschronicles.wordpress.com/2017/06/16/ray...

Posted June 5, 2017

The article has been archived but I wrote an update on this bridge: http://thebridgehunter.areavoices.com/2017/06/06/chimney-roc...

Probably one of the best saves Bjerke has made in his career sofar.

Posted May 6, 2017

http://thebridgehunter.areavoices.com/2017/05/06/grain-truck... More on the collapse of the Gilliece Bridge in Iowa

In my humble opinion, no trucker should be allowed on the highway without proper education. This includes math, vehicle safety and laws, psychology, first aid and even technology classes (including how to read GPS). This incident again reinforces the lack of education and training needed to handle a semi-truck, let alone driving period. If you want to defer someone, then not just the trucking company, but also Betsy DeVos and Elisabeth Chao because neither have a clue about educating our younger generations and Trump put them there to become puppets of his political machine.

Posted April 22, 2017

Stupidity and ignorance took down another icon! http://www.wtol.com/story/35206285/newscast-captures-alleged...

Posted April 18, 2017

BTW, for anyone wishing to pursue a career as a semi-truck driver, instead of behaving like an amateur and always going by the pima-dauma of measurements, like this unintelligent lady did, do what my friend and former classmate did when he started his career as a truck driver: go to school, learn the trade, travel with a truck driver, and always go prepared. Here's an article I wrote about him and his trucking career last year to start things off:

http://thebridgehunter.areavoices.com/2016/08/17/experience-...

Posted April 18, 2017

The sentence is justified, but sadly, this incident really shows how completely messed up and medieval the US education system really is. And with Betsy DeVos at the helm, all fingers point to the end of the Department of Education and its long-standing federal guidelines and the beginning of the fragmented version of the US education system, where not even the basic core is taught. Incidents like this one should be used trump cards come 2018, showing the current US administration that we disapprove of the current policies and are dissatisfied with the way the education system is working.

New Bridge Builders Directory now available
Posted March 5, 2017

New to the Bridgehunter's Chronicles: A comprehesive bridge builder directory, containing a list of bridge companies and builders in the US and elsewhere with some detailed facts. You can also contribute to the directory. More here: http://thebridgehunter.areavoices.com/2017/03/06/new-bridge-...

Posted January 29, 2017

Details on the bridge project: http://www.postbulletin.com/news/local/oakland-place-bridge-... New bridge is scheduled to be open by May 2017.

Posted January 12, 2017

The Bridgehunter's Chronicles pages have been updated to include the photos from this year's Ammann Award top 3 finishers. Plus the page has been updated to include plans for the 2017 Ammann Awards. Entries will be taken from October 2nd to December 3rd. Voting will commence from then until January 6th, 2018, with the winners announced January 12th. The 2016 Ammann Awards was unprecedented because of the large voter turnout and therefore, the voting process will remain as is. It's just a matter of you submitting your pics and favorite bridges for the 2017 Awards. So start bridgehunting! :-) <3 Link: https://bridgehunterschronicles.wordpress.com/the-othmar-h-a...

Posted January 11, 2017

And finally, as promised, the results of the 2016 Othmar H. Ammann Awards, one of the most exciting moments in its five-plus years of doing this. And this needs no fanfare- just read and enjoy! :-) http://thebridgehunter.areavoices.com/2017/01/11/2016-ammann...

Posted January 10, 2017

As the winners of the Ammann Awards are ready to be presented, one of the last chapters in the series on historic bridge preservation in connection with the 100th anniversary of the National Park Service and the 50th anniversary of the National Register of Historic Places comes with a tribute to the forefather, grandfather and mentor of historic bridge preservation and a great teacher, Eric Delony. Christopher Marston of HABS HAER has produced a tribute as a guest columnist with yours truly adding an introduction about my encounters with him. All of this as a Tribute to Lifetime Achievement Winner here: http://thebridgehunter.areavoices.com/2017/01/10/a-tribute-t...

2016 Bridgehunter's Chronicles' Author's Choice Awards
Posted January 9, 2017

As the results are being tallied for the Ammann Awards, here are the winners of the Bridgehunter's Chronicles' Author's Choice Awards, which includes a challenge for the incoming President Donald Trump if he wants to "Make America Great Again" as he promised in his campaign, esp. when he mentioned making great bridges: http://thebridgehunter.areavoices.com/2017/01/09/2016-author...

Winners of the Ammann Awards to be announced on the 11th. Stay tuned!

JS

Posted January 4, 2017

FYI: Deadline for voting for the 2016 Ammann Awards by the Bridgehunter's Chronicles has been extended to January 8th. The reason: Despite very high voter turnout, we have a lot of very close races for first, second and third places in four categories including Tour Guide International, Mystery Bridge and Best Photo. If you haven't voted yet, you have the weekend to do that. Winners will still be announced on the 11th. The ballot: http://thebridgehunter.areavoices.com/2016/12/09/2016-ammann...

US 71 Bridge (Minnesota)
Posted January 3, 2017

Here's an article about the new replacement span being open. It is much wider than the previous one, yet the lanes have now been restricted to three lane instead of four lane. Whether that will be effective in the long term remains to be seen. Yet the new span is nearly identical to the State and Ashley Street Crossings. Rather boring when you look at them..... http://www.exploreokoboji.com/news/news-stories/highway-71-b...

Posted December 9, 2016

Ammann Awards voting underway with many surprises. Click on the site, which will lead you to the ballots. Also available in German. Voting ends January 6th. http://thebridgehunter.areavoices.com/2016/12/09/2016-ammann...