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NS - St. Louis Bridge


Wabash Railroad Bridge #705

St. Louis Bridge after rebuild

Wabash RR photo

License: Released into public domain


BH Photo #345248


Street Views 

Brief history 

Transcribed by James Holzmeier

On January 31, 1927, work was completed on the northbound track of the new $850,000 bridge over the Sangamon River at Decatur and on that date the Banner Blue Limited used the bridge for the first time.

Work was commenced on the new bridge in April, 1926, and it is expected that the entire job will be finished this fall.

The new double track steel and concrete structure will replace an old single track bridge and will eliminate a steep grade as the new bridge is elevated 13 feet above the old.

There has been no interruption in traffic during the construction work.

The new bridge consists of twelve spans of double track girders on concrete piers, the larges span being 106 feet long. These girders support concrete slabs which carry the track. By using this type of construction it is possible to use ballast under the tracks on the bridge and thus secure a smoother riding track.

The following statistics will give an idea of the magnitude of the job involved: The bridge is 1,062 feet long, 6,550 feet of line is affected, 1,665 tons of structural steel and 235 tons of reinforcing rods were used; 10,600 cubic yards of concrete and 150,000 yards of embankment fill were used.

From the March 1, 1927 edition of the Wabash News (monthly publication for employees)


Deck plate girder bridge over Sangamon River on Wabash, later N&W, now NS Railway
Decatur, Macon County, Illinois
Open to rail traffic
Original bridge built 1800s; bridge rebuilt 1927 to handle longer/heavier trains
- Norfolk & Western Railway (NW)
- Norfolk Southern Railway (NS)
- Wabash Railroad (WAB)
5-span deck plate girder bridge w/concrete slab approaches on both sides
Length of largest span: 106.0 ft.
Total length: 1,062.2 ft.
Deck width: 30.0 ft.
Also called
St. Louis Bridge
Wabash Railroad Bridge #705
N&W - St. Louis Bridge
Wabash - St. Louis Bridge
NS - Sangamon River Bridge
N&W - Sangamon River Bridge
Wabash - Sangamon River Bridge
Approximate latitude, longitude
+39.83040, -88.97738   (decimal degrees)
39°49'49" N, 88°58'39" W   (degrees°minutes'seconds")
Approximate UTM coordinates
16/330788/4410804 (zone/easting/northing)
Quadrangle map:
Inventory number
BH 64931 (Bridgehunter.com ID)

Update Log 

  • January 8, 2016: New photos from James Holzmeier
  • January 1, 2015: Essay added by James Holzmeier
  • December 21, 2014: New Street View added by James Holzmeier

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