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BM - Atlantic Mills Bridge


Public Domain: Published Prior to 1923


BH Photo #421800

Street View 


Lost Warren through truss bridge over North Canal on Boston & Maine Railroad
Lawrence, Essex County, Massachusetts
- Boston & Lowell Railroad (B&L)
- Boston & Maine Railroad (BM)
Warren through truss
Approximate latitude, longitude
+42.70323, -71.16596   (decimal degrees)
42°42'12" N, 71°09'57" W   (degrees°minutes'seconds")
Approximate UTM coordinates
19/322605/4730134 (zone/easting/northing)
Inventory number
BH 80594 (Bridgehunter.com ID)

Update Log 

  • April 10, 2018: New Street View added by Luke
  • April 9, 2018: Updated by Matt Lohry: Corrected location—this bridge was just east of Broadway over the canal, not at Amesbury.
  • April 8, 2018: Updated by Luke: Re-converted entry; Bridge in postcard hasn't existed since the 1910s; Original entry erroneously called a pipeline bridge on opposite end of canal a bascule
  • April 8, 2018: Updated by Amanda: Revert unexplained removal of content
  • February 24, 2018: New Street View added by Dana and Kay Klein
  • February 24, 2018: New Street View added by Amanda


B&M - Atlantic Mills Bridge
Posted April 10, 2018, by Don Morrison

I thought we were discussing whether a bridge existed at the present location of the pipeline.

My take is that some kind of lightweight bridge may have existed there, some of the old maps suggest this.

I think the machinery there may be a sluice gate for the Champion Paper plant, not a part of the lock system itself, or for a moveable bridge. Probably water was taken from the canal here for the paper company's equipment and then discharged into the Spicket River.

The postcard bridge has now been correctly located, so here's a link to a picture:


I see Luke has added the HAER documented Spicket River bridge, which I assume is where the water was discharged from the paper mill. There's some interesting stuff to be found here.

Having some of the facts straight and hopefully a photo before creating an entry on the site is kinda important.

If you don't have much info, put it up for discussion before presenting it as fact, and keep on bridge hunting.

B&M - Atlantic Mills Bridge
Posted April 9, 2018, by Luke

Yes, it's clear that everyone makes mistakes.

Now, it's all about how we handle those mistakes.

You can admit the error (I've got a postcard that says Atlantic, and the one that I uploaded that says American. Very easy mistake to make. I'll split the Amesbury line link off later.), or you can get defensive and act petulant about being called out on being wrong/not fact checking.

B&M - Atlantic Mills Bridge
Posted April 9, 2018, by Anonymous

FWIW the 1906 map shows American Mills being at Amesbury, and the book cited mentions the line the bridge was on crossing the Merrimack where the Central/Casey Bridge now stands.

B&M - Atlantic Mills Bridge
Posted April 9, 2018, by Julie Bowers (jbowerz1 [at] gmail [dot] com)

Don't leave Amanda, keep putting them up, doing research, making duplicates because you're so excited to make a discovery. Action Amanda. Refreshing. Even if some details are wrong there is no reason to bash someones research.

Because that research isn't always correct and there is always room for honest debate, not what went on here.

B&M - Atlantic Mills Bridge
Posted April 9, 2018, by Matt Lohry

Speaking of fact-checking information, whoever placed the location balloon in this map certainly did not do that either...the correct location is just east of the Broadway Bridge, over 1/4 mile west of where the balloon was initially placed. I've taken the liberty of correcting it. Evidence of this is right in the entry photo. The long 2-story building immediately to the right of the bridge is still extant, as is the 7-story building on the left side of the photo (across the street). The tall stack in the center of the photo is also still there, albeit much shorter than it shows in the photo. The taller building behind the 2-story building no longer exists. I went to the GE streetview to where I thought the photo might have been taken from, and all 3 abutments for this old bridge are clearly visible in the satellite view. The two southern abutments are also clearly visible in the street view, as are the buildings.

As for the original bridge that started this thread, it looks to be a catwalk over the original eastern lock, which has long since been removed. The hinge assembly for the northern lock gate appears to be still intact, directly under the catwalk. The other lock was at the west end; the channel is still intact (under the Broadway Bridge). So now it's clear that we all make mistakes.

B&M - Atlantic Mills Bridge
Posted April 9, 2018, by Luke

You ALWAYS fact check information. It doesn't matter whether it's coming from a local, your mother, your priest, the president, or James Baughn himself.


Landowners told John Marvig this was a drawbridge: https://bridgehunter.com/mn/brown/cnw-cottonwood-river/

Locals call this a "Civil War triple bridge" despite it being built in 1886 (21 years after the end of the Civil War.) and only having two arches: https://bridgehunter.com/ia/louisa/stone-arch/

You. Always. Fact. Check. Information.

If I (and John Marvig, who is attending the same uni I attended) had to take a required course university course on fact checking and source citing, it means this stuff matters.

Even the HAER fact checked and cited their sources.

People like you who believe anything they're told wholesale without fact checking are why measles are making a comeback.

B&M - Atlantic Mills Bridge
Posted April 9, 2018, by Luke

There's no evidence of a railroad bridge there on 1906 map or in 1938 aerial imagery. So yes, the "Island Avenue Bascule Bridge removed in 1978" is in fact a nonexistent railroad bridge.

As for false information, I've provided links to historic aerial imagery and maps that provide this thing called "evidence". Remind me what evidence you've shown? I can only recall some meaningless "appeal to authority" logical fallacies regarding locals.

And the blame does lay with you, as it was you who didn't bother to do any fact checking any of the locals claims.

B&M - Atlantic Mills Bridge
Posted April 9, 2018, by Douglas Butler

This bridge is a fix truss bridge it does not have no machinery a little rectangle on the lower on this truss bridge a birds eye view is a x truss nothing to do with a machinery its not there, no mechanism just a x truss.

B&M - Atlantic Mills Bridge
Posted April 8, 2018, by Don Morrison

Hopefully there's a edit post button in BH 3.0.

Here's info about that test station.


B&M - Atlantic Mills Bridge
Posted April 8, 2018, by Don Morrison


there is also a bridge on the Spicket just north of the area in that old map. 1944 topo shows a line similar to what might indicate light rail crossing both structures.

It's apparently not a part of the lock system. The guard lock is way on the west end and the 3 descending locks were in a channel just to the side of the waste spillway. That channel is now filled in with dirt.

The 1906 atlas does seem show a bridge there, but it must have been a very light pedestrian bridge or maybe a small tram bridge for the light duty winch equipment seen in streetview to have lifted it for boat passage.

Maybe that winch is for water control to some underground piping though.

Water for the paper pulp mill in 1906? Maybe for use if the Spicket is low? Maybe wastewater from the paper mill?

State Board of Health experiment station south on the path from this structure? With a pipe from the descending locks. Maybe a supply for drinking water?

It's likely that there was a bridge, even if only pedestrian. The challenge is now to document it properly.

Maybe these folks could help:


B&M - Atlantic Mills Bridge
Posted April 8, 2018, by Luke

Historical maps show a road bridge, can't find any info aside from that: http://www.historicmapworks.com/Map/US/11776/Plate+003/Lawre...

However, your original entry was for a supposed railroad bascule, and considering the facts given by said map, aforementioned aerial imagery, and the "machinery" not being tall enough for rolling stock with no evidence of a berm, nip that idea in the bud.

B&M - Atlantic Mills Bridge
Posted April 8, 2018, by Luke

What is there is the remains of a lock system (More relevant to sister site Landmarkhunter than to here.) and a pipeline bracketed by two I-beams that doesn't really warrant an entry.

Better to change an entry for nothing into an entry for something

Island Avenue Railroad Bridge
Posted February 24, 2018, by Luke

The bridge in the aerial imagery is far too narrow to serve a railroad. Furthermore the 1944 topo shows the only railroad bridge in the vicinity being farther westward.

Here's its BH entry: https://bridgehunter.com/ma/essex/bh58790/

From the looks of it, you photographed remains of a lock. You should probably post those on Landmarkhunter, as IIRC the whole area's a historic district.

Island Avenue Railroad Bridge
Posted February 24, 2018, by Anonymous

Historicaerials is a website. Plug in the GPS cords and you won't find a bridge.

Island Avenue Railroad Bridge
Posted February 24, 2018, by Luke

Historicaerials shows no railroad bascule here in imagery from 1938 or 1963-66.