The consortium’s purpose for building the bridge was to make it easier and faster for coal companies to haul their coal from one state to another. Eventually the bridge was opened to regular motorists willing to pay the price of the toll.
After the completion of U. S. 119 drastically reduced the number of motoring customers using the bridge, and consequently, the company’s yearly revenue, the consortium made the decision to dissolve the bridge company. Following the company’s dissolution the bridge and the property it rested upon reverted back to the heirs of Elbert Thompson, who then acquired both the land and bridge. He said Thompson’s son, Harold, purportedly attempted to sell the bridge. Having been unsuccessful to find a buyer, however, he later tried to give the bridge to either or both states, with the proviso that either or both would assume responsibility for its future operation and maintenance. Neither state accepted.