2 votes

Dolles Mill Bridge


Side view from upstream

Photo taken by James Baughn

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BH Photo #103654



Lost through truss bridge over Whitewater River northwest of Sedgewickville near Bollinger/Dolles Mill
Bollinger County, Missouri
Replaced by a new bridge
Built 1913 at Sedgewickville; relocated here in 1936; replaced 2011
- Miller & Borcherding Bridge Builders of St. Louis, Missouri
- Stupp Brothers Bridge & Iron Co. of St. Louis, Missouri
Pin-connected, 9-panel Parker through truss
Length of largest span: 170.9 ft.
Total length: 172.9 ft.
Deck width: 12.1 ft.
Vertical clearance above deck: 16.8 ft.
Approximate latitude, longitude
+37.54841, -89.95206   (decimal degrees)
37°32'54" N, 89°57'07" W   (degrees°minutes'seconds")
Approximate UTM coordinates
16/239206/4159808 (zone/easting/northing)
Quadrangle map:
Land survey
T. 33 N., R. 10 E., Sec. 17
Average daily traffic (as of 2008)
Inventory numbers
MO 009-032000.5 (Missouri off-system bridge number)
MONBI 13224 (Missouri bridge number on the National Bridge Inventory)
BH 20872 (Bridgehunter.com ID)
Inspection report (as of March 2008)
Overall condition: Poor
Superstructure condition rating: Critical (2 out of 9)
Substructure condition rating: Satisfactory (6 out of 9)
Deck condition rating: Poor (4 out of 9)
Sufficiency rating: 16.3 (out of 100)
View more at BridgeReports.com

Update Log 

  • December 17, 2011: Bridge has been demolished and replaced by a one-lane UCEB
  • April 25, 2008: Updated by Max Johnson
  • February 13, 2005: Added new photos


Dolles Mill Bridge
Posted December 19, 2011, by Tony Dillon (spansaver [at] hotmail [dot] com)

Yeah...need to give out a few of these before the year ends.

...And Missouri hasn't gotten one recently.

Photo by Todd Baslee

Dolles Mill Bridge
Posted December 19, 2011, by Nathan Holth (form3 [at] historicbridges [dot] org)

I find that the guardrails on the newly built "bridge" if the slab of concrete can be called such, are unsafe. The guardrails are mounted ridiculously low such that trucks and possibly other vehicles may simply go over them, similar to jumping a curb. The proper function of a guardrail is to guide, deflect, or absorb vehicles with which they collide. This guardrail does not appear to be built to do any of these things reliably. No only has a spectacular and extremely significant historic bridge been destroyed for no reason, it has been replaced with a substandard modern bridge... and for what. THIRTY FIVE measly vehicles?! Absolutely pathetic.

Dolles Mill Bridge
Posted December 18, 2011, by Clark Vance (cvance [at] dogmail [dot] com)

Money is being spent to "provide jobs". Those jobs can either be to existing, politically connected construction companies to build the familiar, or to new companies providing an unusual service rehabbing old structures. Even if the rehab would "create" more jobs, the people who would do that work have no existing organization and thus little political influence.

As long as policy is to spend money to "create" jobs, historical considerations, and even cost effectiveness, will not drive building decisions.

There's a lot of other people's money being thrown around and a lot of people scrambling to get it. Both those throwing it and those catching it expect personal gain and few of them care what gets damaged during the scramble.

Dolles Mill Bridge
Posted December 18, 2011, by James Baughn (webmaster [at] bridgehunter [dot] com)

It's even worse than you think. The replacement bridge still only carries one lane traffic, and it's barely any wider than the old bridge.

For years, all I've heard from MoDOT and county officials is that these historic bridges are "too narrow" and "have dangerous approaches". Guess what? This new bridge is still too narrow, and has an awkward intersection at the north approach.

This isn't an isolated case: it seems that many of the new bridges built in Missouri in the last few years are quite narrow with substandard approaches. It's extremely unlikely they will last as long as the bridges they replaced.

Dolles Mill Bridge
Posted December 17, 2011, by Tony Dillon (spansaver [at] hotmail [dot] com)

I agree with you there Chris... makes no sense!

And at approximately 35 cars a day...the new UCEB will likely NEVER pay for itself before it in turn is replaced.

Should have just rehabbed the old girl for a fraction of the cost!

Dolles Mill Bridge
Posted December 17, 2011, by Chris

Just makes me sick. Another one gone forever. People don't appreciate history anymore. Go ahead and build UCEBs upstream but leave the trusses in place for history's sake.

Dolles Mill Bridge
Posted July 20, 2011, by James Baughn (webmaster [at] bridgehunter [dot] com)

Lori: I believe that Miller & Borcherding was a partnership between R. L. Miller and Louis Borcherding. The company split and both men went to start their own bridge companies. This is the first I've heard of the General Construction Company, but it would make sense that this was the company that Borcherding started.

Dolles Mill Bridge
Posted July 13, 2011, by Lori Williams (dewlaw [at] cox [dot] net)

I am curious about the Miller & Borcherding Bridge Builders out of St. Louis. In the 1920s, a Louis Borcherding was President of General Construction Company in St. Louis, Missouri. Perhaps there's a connection between the 2 companies.

If anyone has info about the people from either of these companies, I'd be most grateful. I'm a freelance writer from Bethany, OK and am currently writing about a 1924-era bridge built by General Construction Company. The bridge, once a part of Route 66, is now being restored. My research will be complete once I can interview someone who knew someone who worked on the Overholser Bridge in Oklahoma County.

Dolles Mill Bridge
Posted April 4, 2008, by William R. Statler (mcpo_curmudgeon [at] bellsouth [dot] net)

My youngest brother lives near there and tells me that the county has closed the bridge permanently.

Dolles Mill Bridge
Posted January 10, 2008, by Alan Chapman (alan-chapman [at] sbcglobal [dot] net)

I've heard that this bridge is the next to be replaced. As much as I like the bridge, I don't think it's nothing compared to the mill 1/4 - 1/2 mile away. Someone needs to do some history on it.

Dolles Mill Bridge
Posted July 29, 2006, by Jane (Gwanny2 [at] aol [dot] com)

We moved here in 1996, my kids and I have been swimming at "The Iron Bridge" for 10 years now. Everyone around here knows the iron bridge,either as a swimming hole, party spot, or make out spot. There are numerous stories, whether fact or fiction about this bridge. It is getting in bad shape and I hope it will be fixed instead of torn down, I would fight that tooth and nail. It is a part of our local history and needs to be preserved.

Dolles Mill Bridge
Posted December 14, 2005, by jj (smurfblue3 [at] excite [dot] com)

traveled this bridge many years... rode bikes dirtbikes and 4-wheelers across it... during flash flooding this was the only way out(rest of the bridges was low water) we lived just about 3 miles up the road... use to be a rope tied to the bridge once to swing off it into the deep water below it's nick name around here is "the iron bridge"