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PRR - Eel River Bridge

Photo 

Partial map of bridge

PRR Valuation Map via Craig Berndt

BH Photo #139313

Map 

Description 

The Panhandle's original route out of Logan heading North to Chicago, replaced by bypass cutoff built 6 miles West of here at Kenneth aka Trimer JCT. Abandoned in 1930's, Shows up in PRR papers in early 50's, but not thereafter so unknown when razed.

Brief History 

Written by James Norwood

A lot of mystery surrounds this former bridge on Logansport's West side. When the Pennsylvania Railroad predecessor Chicago, Cincinnati, and Louisville built their line from Chicago to Logansport to connect with the New Castle and Richmond Railroad, they were all alone at this future bridge location. Later, the Vandalia's predecessor(Logansport Terre Haute and Southwestern Railroad among other corporate names) along with the Detroit and Eel River(later Eel River Railroad, Vandalia also, and at one time controlled by the Wabash Railroad) passed by this location. The D&ER and Vandalia ran side by side through here and may have crossed the later PRR line at grade via a diamond, but I haven't found evidence to support that yet. At some point this bridge was built to cross over the other two railroads. It was quite the climb for PRR engines to turn off of their Effner Branch at a point called Peoria Junction and basically follow current old US 24 through it's curves to get up and over this bridge. Even to the North of this bridge, the PRR line had another climb to get over a hill and head towards Royal Center. Sometime around 1918-1919, the PRR had a cutoff built off of the Effner branch about 6 miles West of Peoria JCT, to head North to Royal Center to rejoin the old line. The new Junction off of the Effner branch was called Trimmer, or Kenneth Junction. After completion, all freight was pulled off of the old line, but Passenger trains continued to use the old route on Southbound moves only. Later, cars were stored on the old line before it was outright abandoned and tore up. There has been documents that show this bridge in early 1950's PRR documents despite the line being out of service since at least 1937. Today, only parts of the South approach remain, as evidenced by a large fill with limestone blocks. D&J liquors, the Red Cross, and other business sit on the former route through here and the old line from about a Mile and a half Northeast of here all the way to Royal Center is now US 35. Some question the fact the a cement company used to be near the old remaining abutment and they believe this fill was for that business. I believe this fill was the old bridge approach and abutment that was reused by the concrete company after abandonment by the railroad. This fill can be seen from Bates Street, or even from the Casey's Gas Station which is just Southwest of location. Ironically, the bypass cutoff itself was abandoned and tore up about 5 years ago and is currently being reworked to become the Panhandle Pathway Trail from Kenneth to Winamac.

Facts 

Overview
Lost Pony/through girder bridge over Logansport and Eel River Railroad(former Pennsy affiliates Eel River "Detroit and Eel River", and also Vandalia "Logansport Terre Haute and Southwestern" lines. on Former route of Pennsylvania RR(nee Panhandle Rou
Location
Logansport, Cass County, Indiana
Status
Lost
Railroads
- Pennsylvania Railroad (PRR)
- Pittsburgh, Cincinnati, Chicago, & St. Louis Railroad (PCC&StL)
Design
Pony/through girder
Also called
Bates Street railroad bridge
PRR bridge 448
Approximate latitude, longitude
+40.75752, -86.38391   (decimal degrees)
40°45'27" N, 86°23'02" W   (degrees°minutes'seconds")
Approximate UTM coordinates
16/552003/4512022 (zone/easting/northing)
Quadrangle map:
Lucerne
Inventory number
BH 42464 (Bridgehunter.com ID)

Update Log 

  • April 28, 2009: Essay added by James Norwood

Sources 

  • James Norwood