Lewiston & Concord Bridge
Photo published before 1923
BH Photo #424836
The Lewiston & Concord (now Clarkston) Bridge Company began to erect a prefabricated span across the Snake in 1898. The 1500 foot steel cantilever structure was originally intended to span a river in Argentina but the South American firm that ordered it went bankrupt before taking delivery. The abandoned bridge was purchased from the east coast fabricator at a bargain price although an additional 200 foot approach span was required to close the river’s gap. The bridge was completed at a cost of $110,000 and opened on June 24, 1899. The venture was a less than smashing success. The local folks hated the tolls, even though they were a modest five cents for pedestrians and ten cents for a team and wagon. Pearcy’s ferry continued to operate profitably in competition with the new crossing. A long political struggle ensued, finally ending in 1913 when the states agreed to share the cost of purchasing the bridge equally. The bridge company received $80,000 and the span became a free crossing on December 4, 1913.The ferry went out of business the same day.
The Argentine bridge was obsolete by the late 1930s and replaced by the Snake River Interstate Bridge in 1939.