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New Athens Bridge





BH Photo #164665


Bridge was located on a old alignment of IL 13/156 approx. 1/4 mile downstream from the railroad bridge. Highway approaches on either end still remain but nothing else. Removed after 1979 when a new bridge on a new alignment of IL 13 opened downstream.


Lost Bridge over Kaskaskia River on IL 13, IL 156 in New Athens
New Athens, St. Clair County, Illinois
Replaced by new bridge
Built 1919; removed after 1979
Parker through truss
Approximate latitude, longitude
+38.32783, -89.88171   (decimal degrees)
38°19'40" N, 89°52'54" W   (degrees°minutes'seconds")
Approximate UTM coordinates
16/248099/4246119 (zone/easting/northing)
Quadrangle map:
New Athens West
Inventory number
BH 38121 (Bridgehunter.com ID)

Update Log 

  • January 4, 2014: Updated by michael wilson: Changed 1972 to 1979 when bridge was still in use.
  • May 9, 2010: Updated by Robert Stephenson: Built date
  • April 11, 2009: Updated by Kim Harvey: add categories
  • November 16, 2008: Added by Kim Harvey



New Athens Bridge
Posted January 4, 2014, by michael wilson (mfwpe [at] aol [dot] com)

I changed the replaced after 1972 to 1979 since I was attending Beck Area Vocational Center at the old Nike Missle Base my junior and senior years in high school from 1977/78 to 1978/79. About 30 to 40 students rode a bus daily from Sparta High School to Beck. We crossed the old bridge twice daily. The new highway was under construction those years but not open until after I graduated in 1979.

New Athens Bridge
Posted January 11, 2012, by Andy Jankowski (andyj [at] hometel [dot] com)

I recall a story about a car accident that claimed the lives of two soldiers who were stationed at the Nike Missile Base (SL-40) located just west of Hecker. Their vehicle struck the guard rail at the west entrance to the bridge. One of the soldiers was thrown from the vehicle into the river below and his body was never found. I wondered if there was a connection to Julie's late uncle and this accident since the base opened around 1958.

New Athens Bridge
Posted January 11, 2012, by Andy Jankowski (andyj [at] hometel [dot] com)

I believe the bridge was replaced because the river was channelized for navigation in the late 60s/early 70s. You can see how narrow the river channel was, as it appears to be equal to the span of the bridge. The downstream bridge was built to match the new channel width.

New Athens Bridge
Posted August 1, 2009, by Kim Harvey

trying to find one but have not been successful at this time.

New Athens Bridge
Posted July 31, 2009, by Julie King (juls2king [at] yahoo [dot] com)

Do you have a photo of the old Kaskaskia bridge that was located on Rt. 13 in 1958? I had a 21 year old uncle killed on this bridge. Would like photo to add to geneology.