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Calderwood Dam Railroad Bridge


Little tennessee river calderwood tn1


View this photo at Wikimedia Commons

BH Photo #464968



"Alcoa began developing the Little Tennessee Valley in 1909 to provide the enormous amounts of electricity needed to power to its aluminum smelting operations in Blount County. Superintendent I.G. Calderwood oversaw the extension of a railway line from Chilhowee to what is now Calderwood (railroad bridge support columns are still visible in the river just downstream from the dam). Southern Railway engineers had suggested that the construction of this rail line would take six months, but Calderwood and his team accomplished the task in just six weeks. The first of Alcoa's Little Tennessee Valley dams, Cheoah, was completed in 1919, and the second, Santeetlah, was completed in 1928. Preliminary work on Calderwood Dam began in 1918, but test drilling suggested the site might not be satisfactory. Subsequent tests confirmed the site's stability, however, and construction began in 1927. The first two generating units went into operation on June 22, 1930, and a third unit was added in 1938." - Wikipedia


Lost Bridge over Little Tennessee River on Former Railroad
Blount County, Tennessee, and Monroe County, Tennessee
Only the piers remain
Built 1909
- Southern Railway (SOU)
Approximate latitude, longitude
+35.49066, -83.98031   (decimal degrees)
35°29'26" N, 83°58'49" W   (degrees°minutes'seconds")
Approximate UTM coordinates
17/229635/3931541 (zone/easting/northing)
Inventory number
BH 87804 (Bridgehunter.com ID)

Update Log 

  • January 14, 2020: New photo from Ben Tate


  • Ben Tate - benji5221 [at] yahoo [dot] com