Mississippi River Crossings

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Posted by MP173 on Tuesday, August 2, 2005 2:08 PM
Wow...that was a lot of work.

What is your favorite bridge? Mine is the IC @ Dubuque with the curving tunnel.

ed
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Posted by nanaimo73 on Wednesday, August 3, 2005 9:09 AM
I really have not had time to compare them. I am really intrigued by the CMSP&P pontoon bridges (Wabasha#28 and Prairie du Chien#32). The Wabash bridge (Hannibal#43) has a curved tunnel on the west side. What I really like is that they are all different. Before July 31st they had just been names on a map.
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Posted by Big_Boy_4005 on Wednesday, August 3, 2005 4:12 PM
Interesting study. The bridges in the Twin Cities are the ones I'm most familiar with.

I believe that #13 is called the Camden bridge, and is indeed CP's third and final crossing of the Mississippi, for trains traveling west from Chicago. The first is just east of LaCrosse WI (#28) and the second is at Hastings MN (#24).

I'm not sure if #14 is in use any longer.

#15 is very much in use by BNSF for their Wilmar line, also the TC&W, and the UP for access to their customers in the west metro (ex C&NW).

#16 is James J. Hill's famous stone arch bridge, which is now being used as a bike and walking path.

#17, there is no bridge, but there was many years ago. The Minneapolis & Western had a very tall steel trestle which I believe started near north end of the I-35W bridge, and crossed the river southwesterly.

#18 is the NP high bridge, still standing, but unused.

#19 is the Milwaukee short line bridge. Once a very vital connection carrying passengers and freight to Minneapolis and points west, it now has been reduced to single track, and is dedicated to serving the Hiawatha Milling District in south Minneapolis. I believe the Minnesota Comercial leases the track from the CP and provides the service.

#20 the Omaha swing bridge, is part of UP's mainline to Mankato and Omaha.

#21 is also part of the UP now. It actually forms a large loop with #22 connecting in South St Paul.

#23 is an interesting bridge, but unfortunately is no longer in use. It Last served as a single lane toll bridge for cars, which used the lower level, while the tracks were on the upper. It has fallen into such disrepair, that it was finally closed to all traffic.
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Posted by nanaimo73 on Thursday, August 4, 2005 1:59 AM
Thank you. That is most helpful. I hope to have this done before September.
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Posted by Big_Boy_4005 on Thursday, August 4, 2005 11:46 AM
You're welcome.

UP's Twin Cities trackage is rather interesting because it runs off in so many directions. Most of it came from the C&NW, but 2 of the 3 bridges came from different sources. As you noted, #21 was built by the CGW. It provided access to St Paul's Union Depot for some of the lesser roads.

#22 was built by the St Paul Bridge & Terminal, which had yards on both sides of the river. My guess is that back in the day, they provided interchange service for all of the railroads in the area. On the west bank, the CGW, CRI&P, Milwaukee Road (who had tracks on both sides of the river). On the east bank, C&NW, CB&Q, NP, GN.

#20 the Omaha swing bridge is a little unusual, though you may not have noticed. It can be seen in the original linked photo(it shows better if you scroll south one frame). Most swing bridges have their pivots at the center of the span. This bridge has a large counter weight to allow for an off center pivot, making the shipping channel wider without making the bridge longer.

Here is a diagram of what UP's track looks like today. See the loop?



On a related note, at one time back in the 30's the Milwaukee Road considered building another bridge across the Mississippi near the mouth of the Minnesota River. This would have replaced a bridge that crossed the Minnesota a couple of miles away. My guess is that the resulting grade would have been more favorable than that of the old Minnesota crossing. Of course it was never built, and today the Minnesota bridge is long gone as well.
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Posted by CSSHEGEWISCH on Thursday, August 4, 2005 2:03 PM
Bridge 36 is the double-decked ATSF span at Fort Madison. The Transcon uses the lower level and a highway toll bridge uses the upper level. Note that the navigation channel is closer to the Iowa side.
The daily commute is part of everyday life but I get two rides a day out of it. Paul
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Posted by Anonymous on Thursday, August 4, 2005 8:51 PM
Apparently the bridge across Mississippi at Fort Madison is owned by BNSF, as the toll attendant was wearing BNSF regalia. It only cost a dollar!
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Posted by Big_Boy_4005 on Friday, August 5, 2005 2:55 PM
Nanaimo, as long as you are making changes to the master list, I think #16 needs work. To say that it is just "another Great Northern bridge" is like saying the Great Pyramid is another pile of rocks. The Stone Arch is among the top 5 masonry railroad viaducts in North America, and perhaps the crown jewel of James J. Hills railroading accomplishments.

Part of what makes it such a spectacular engineering feat, is the nature of the river in that location. Just a few hundred yards upstream, the river plunges about 40 feet, at St Anthony Falls. The force of the water has demolished numerous man made srtuctures placed in it's path, including a power plant, as recently as 10 years ago, yet the bridge still stands.

In the early days Minneapolis got it's start because of the river. Companies like Pillsbury and General Mills owe their existance to the river, which was harnessed to power their first mills along it's west bank.

In the early 60's, the Army Corps of Engineers built lock and dam #1, and removed a section of the stone work replacing it with with a steel truss. This allowed comercial navigation to move about 5 miles north to the Port of Minneapolis, between bridges 13 and 14.

Here is a vintage photo of the Stone Arch Bridge, with C&NW's 400 departing Minneapolis. Beyond the bridge are the mills.


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Posted by nanaimo73 on Friday, August 5, 2005 3:10 PM
I agree. Today I just wanted to get all of the locations down. I'm guessing I will spend about 30 minutes on each bridge on the history, something like 25 or 30 hours altogether. I don't know how to do this at home and put it all on the forum at once. I don't even know how to "cut and paste". I'll be working on the original post for two or three weeks.
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Posted by Big_Boy_4005 on Friday, August 5, 2005 4:57 PM
I see, well cutting and pasting is really pretty easy. When you see text you want, hold down the left mouse button, and drag it over the desired text, it will be highlighted. Then right click while on the highlighted area, and a small menu will come up. Copy leaves the original in place, and makes a copy of it on the "clipboard". Cut removes the original text. Paste puts the contents of the clipboard in at the cursor.

If you have a lot of cutting and pasting to do, just start a notepad file, and start dumping everything into it. Then move the chunks around. When you are ready, copy it all to the clipboard, and edit your post. Another option is to have your note pad file open in one window and the forum in another, and move chunks that way.

If you just want part of what I said, copy it. You don't even need to use a quote.

Actually, you must know how to cut and paste. I can't imagine you retyped all those links. Did you??? [swg]

BTW I have photos of a few of the bridges, and can get some of the others If you want.
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Posted by Anonymous on Saturday, August 6, 2005 8:54 PM
That is an excellent study. Thanks for putting the time in to produce it.
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Posted by DanRaitz on Sunday, August 7, 2005 7:38 AM

Here is one of my shots of the BNSF crossing in Bemidji, MN


Dan

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Posted by nanaimo73 on Sunday, August 7, 2005 7:56 AM
I was going to post that. Well, actually I still will. I love the Oakways. Do you know if the Soo bridge just to the north is still used ?
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Posted by DanRaitz on Sunday, August 7, 2005 8:03 AM

No, it is no longer in use. I've also got a shot of the old M&I bridge, that is now used for a bike trail, will post after I get it scanned.

Here it is.

Dan

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Posted by Anonymous on Sunday, August 7, 2005 3:24 PM
Worked as Operator on Bridge at Sabula, Ia # 30 in Early sixties have fond memories of it . This would be my Favorite

Mike Beckert
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Posted by Big_Boy_4005 on Sunday, August 7, 2005 11:51 PM
I see you have been very busy working on the list. Lookin good.

I happened to be out and about yesterday, and managed to grab some quick shots of some of the Twin Cities bridges. They aren't exactly simple to photograph when you're in a hurry, because the best locations need to be walked to, and I didn't have time.

One thing that makes the Camden bridge (#13) unusual is that there is a switch at the west end, at least 50' from the bank. It can be seen very well in the aerial photo, but land based shots tend to miss that feature. This isn't the best picture, but it does show how the bridge branches off.



Moving down stream, I was mistaken about the status of #14. The BNSF does indeed have customers on the west bank, including a cement plant and at least 2 scrap metal dealers. There may be more. The bridge was reduced from 2 tracks down to 1, but it is alive and well.



As I was heading down the road on the east side of the river, the road crossed over the line that leads to #15. Of course there was a westbound TC&W train, heading for the bridge, but by the time I could get to the spot where I could actually see the bridge, it had crossed.



I didn't mess with the stone arch. If you look at the photo I posted earlier, in the background there is a concrete arch road bridge. That may be one of the best public vantage points remaining to shoot the stone arch.

This brings us to #17 which no longer exists. Here is all that remains of the Minneapolis Western bridge, the east bank approach footing. If you look closely through the other road bridges, you can just make out a small section of the steel trusses of the NP High Bridge (#18).



Here is what the bridge might have looked like if it was still standing.



I never realized that the high bridge had been converted to bike and foot traffic back in 1999. Oops, live and learn.

The Milwaukee Short Line bridge (#19) is another one that will take some location scouting to get a good shot of, and #20, #22and #23 are even tougher without a boat.

Here is a quick shot of the Robert Street Lift Bridge, taken through the windshield of a moving vehicle. There are better vantage points of course.



Here is a photo of the CP's bridge at Hastings (#24). As far as I can tell, this and Robert Street are the only lift style bridges on the Mississippi. This is also the last Mississippi River bridge that is entirely in Minnesota.



I find it quite interesting that for as long as the Mississippi River is, and as many states that use it as a border, more than half of the bridges ever built to span it were built with at least one end in Minnesota. Living near so many of these marvels, it is easy to take them for granted.
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Posted by Big_Boy_4005 on Tuesday, August 9, 2005 2:26 AM
QUOTE: Early bridges
http://archive.ncsa.uiuc.edu/Cyberia/RiverWeb/Projects/Ambot/Archives/History/ts3.html
This mentions a railroad bridge between Prescott, Wisconsin and Hastings, Minnesota which could be a 52nd site.


Nanaimo, I find parts of this document to be suspect. I know that I am not always right, but I can guarantee you that Hudson Wisconsin is NOT on the MISSISSIPPI. It is on the ST CROIX. The St Croix forms the border between Minnesota and Wisconsin north of the Mississippi, and flows into it at Prescott Wisconsin, about 3 miles down river from Hastings.

The BNSF (ex CB&Q) main to Chicago crosses the mouth of the St Croix at Prescott, and enters Minnesota. There is really only one possibility for there to have been such a bridge 52 in this location, and that would be if a much earlier version of the Milwaukee Road had a very different alignment from present day. The problem with an alignment that followed the river bank more closely, opposite Prescott, is that it is mostly swamp and backwater. There was also the Vermillion River to contend with. Very difficult terrain for a railroad to cross, especially given that there was good solid ground a couple of miles inland.

It is possible that there was an earlier version of bridge 24, but I can't imagine that it would have been very far from where it is today. Then there's the question of what railroad did it belong to?
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Posted by nanaimo73 on Tuesday, August 9, 2005 8:30 AM
Yes, I agree with you. I'm going to check it out on
http://memory.loc.gov/ammem/gmdhtml/rrhtml/rrhome.html  
when I get time. I wanted to raise the question for other investigators. I looked around on Terraserver and couldn't find anything.
http://terraserver.microsoft.com/image.aspx?T=1&S=12&Z=15&X=644&Y=6192&W  
The year given in that link (the one in your quote works) is 1871.

You mentioned St. Paul#24 and Hastings#27 were the only lift bridges you knew of still operating. The Wabash bridge, Hannibal#43, is another.

Was Minneapolis#20 the Minneapolis Western or the Minneapolis and Western ?
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Posted by Big_Boy_4005 on Tuesday, August 9, 2005 1:19 PM
That is a cool resource. I didn't plow through everything yet, I kind of went straight to the earliest. The first one only had a single line heading west from St Paul along the east bank, and finally crossing near St Cloud. (circa 1850) No connections to the east.

The next one skipped about 40 years ahead, and showed the lines pretty well developed into their maximum configuration. Unfortunately, I can't link directly to that map (I tried), but it shows the tracks in their current orientation, though the map is rather crude.

I suspect that the 1871 documentation was referring to the bridge at Prescott which crossed the St Croix to a piece of land in Minnesota called Point Douglas. To someone not familiar with the area, they wouldn't really know the difference, and those are the two closest towns. I still don't think we have a "phantom" bridge.

Your teraserver link captured that bridge perfectly, though it is hard to see because it is so dark against the water. The light colored road bridge just to the north stands out much better. The Perscott bridge too is a lift bridge.

Sorry I didn't notice #40 as being a lift. I've been a little too focused on the Minnesota bridges, but as you have posted additional photo links, I have been looking at the others down stream. Kind of hard to tell a lift from overhead.[;)] ED. Now that you mentioned it I see the shadows of of the lift towers on the water.

I am by interest more of a modeler than a railroader, which is part of the reason these bridges interest me so much. On my home layout, I will be representing Hastings, Prescott, and the Milwaukee Short Line, for sure (maybe others).

As you can see from my signature, the focus will be the Amtrak Empire Builder, though that would get rather dull with only 2 trains per day, so there will also be plenty of freight.

The layout starts out on the south end at Red Wing on the CP, with a second leg entering at Prescott on the BNSF. The plan follows the tracks past all of the Twin Cities' bridge locations, with the CP exiting just before the Camden bridge, and the BNSF exiting beyond Northtown.

Minneapolis / Western: To "and" or not to "and", that is the question. A source of great confusion for my aging brain. To add to the confusion, Minneapolis not only had a Western, but also had an Eastern. One had an AND in it's name the other did not.

Unfortunately, my best resource for this information passed away while shoveling snow during the Thanksgiving Blizzard of '91. He used to work for General Mills, and had access to the company archives. He had filing cabinets full of materials he had copied. Very cool stuff. His collection put the Minnesota Historical Society's to shame on this subject matter. One could only imagine what General Mills has in it's vault.

Bill took me on something of a guided tour of the downtown bridge sites, as research for a club layout that he designed, and we were building. That's how I found out about this stuff. Of course that was nearly 20 years ago.

Back to the question at hand, I believe Western has the and, and Eastern does not.

Minneapolis & Western

Minneapolis Eastern

Keep up the good work, you might be able to get this published.[bow][tup][tup][^][:D][8D]
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Posted by Big_Boy_4005 on Tuesday, August 9, 2005 3:10 PM
I've had a chance to look at some more of those maps, and have come to some conclusions.

First, railroads back in the 1800's changed names as often as we change underwear.

Second, no matter what they were called, the right of ways were more or less fixed early on, and did not get moved very far if at all, though it is difficult to tell given the crudity and large scale of the early maps.

Third, as of the 1855 map, the Mississippi had not been crossed from Wisconsin. By the mid 1880's there were a number of crossings, including 25,26, and 27.

( I am in mid thunderstorm here, and sometimes my computer reboots when the power filckers. I hate losing posts, so I'm editing.)

Fourth, the first rails to reach the Twin Cities from the east did not cross the Mississippi. They used the BNSF route north of La Crosse, and crossed the St Croix at Prescott.

Are you interested in another river bridge project? The St Croix is also interesting, and there are only 6, though I originally thought there were only 4. [swg]
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Posted by Big_Boy_4005 on Wednesday, August 10, 2005 3:08 AM
I see that you have gone back and added a status line for each bridge. Good idea. I think you should consider adding one more class, which would be "demolished". That is a major distinction over abandoned, which I would consider to mean standing but not in use.

Secure may not be the best word to describe a bridge, because it is easy to confuse it's activity level and importance to the railroad with it's structural integrity.

Here are the bridges from Minneapolis to LaCrosse.

13 - high activity
14 - low activity
15 - high activity
16 - abandoned (converted to pedestrian and bike)
17 - demolished
18 - abandoned (converted to pedestrian and bike)
19 - low activity
20 - high activity
21 - high activity
22 - high activity
23 - abandoned
24 - high activity
25 - demolished
26 - demolished
27 - demolished
28 - high activity
29 - demolished

By the way, 16 and 18 are being considered for use with a proposed light rail line between downtown Minneapolis and downtown St Paul.

Here's something else to think about, book keeping. The main post is getting very long, and it is becoming very difficult to see where you are placing new material. Why not take one post per bridge, and break this into chapters. To make it extremely clean, start a new topic here in this forum where it is quiet. Cut and paste the material into each post, if you need help, I can coach you. The really cool part about doing it this way is that little blue arrow in the topic listing, takes you to the last post, including any edits. It makes it very easy to see the updates.

When all is said and done, you can post a link in the main forum, directing people to it.

What do you think?
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Posted by nanaimo73 on Wednesday, August 10, 2005 8:25 AM
I would prefer to have locals like yourself comment on how much traffic there is on each bridge.
I'm going to leave it as one monster post. I have all of the links done now. Once I get the histories done I'm going to go over the former Amtrak trains in the Minneapolis area and then cover the pre Amtrak service. That should be it. My attention span on this topic is coming to an end, and I have some other projects I want to get to. The state of this Trackside guides forum is deplorable, and I want to do a monster post each month to change that. My next project will go faster, and it also involves the Twin Cities.

Your suggestion on the status of abandoned bridges is a good one. The trouble is my only guide is terraserver, and some of those images are 20 years old. I would just be telling people what they already saw. Hopefully some other people will come forward and be as helpfull as you have.
Dale
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Posted by Big_Boy_4005 on Thursday, August 11, 2005 12:11 PM
Hi Dale, thanks for including me in the main post, it has been fun following your progress on this project. I'm glad you have found my input helpful. There's nothing quite like being there.

I checked out the links to your previous projects, nice work. I really liked the Amrtak stats.

Back in my college days, about 20 years ago, I was a geography major and had to do a thematic map project. I chose to show the rise and fall of railroad milage, and the number of class one roads. It was a lot of research. I never did finish it. I have the graphics handy, but I'll have to do some digging for the data. I may be able to resurect it using the computer, and possibly add one more new map to show the continuing trend.

I spent some time plowing through railpictures.net looking for photos of some of these bridges. In over 60 pages this was all I found. There were a couple more in the early pages before I started recording the links. I'll go back and get them. There are still hundreds to go through. I would agree, there isn't a lot out there.

http://www.railpictures.net/viewphoto.php?id=110461 Camden Bridge Minneapolis, MN
http://www.railpictures.net/viewphoto.php?id=103805 "Omaha" Bridge St Paul, MN
http://www.railpictures.net/viewphoto.php?id=107094 Robert St Bridge St Paul, MN
http://www.railpictures.net/viewphoto.php?id=104667 Robert St Bridge St Paul, MN
http://www.railpictures.net/viewphoto.php?id=105543 Government Bridge Davenport, IA
http://www.railpictures.net/viewphoto.php?id=99198 #48 & #49 Memphis, TN
http://www.railpictures.net/viewphoto.php?id=110372 KCS Vicksburg, MS
http://www.railpictures.net/viewphoto.php?id=110370 KCS Vicksburg, MS
http://www.railpictures.net/viewphoto.php?id=101951 KCS Vicksburg, MS

I agree that the popups are annoying, but some of the photos are worth it.
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Posted by Murphy Siding on Thursday, August 11, 2005 8:46 PM
nanaimo73: I found it! ( this post that is.) This looks like an interesting project. Why did you pick an area so far from home? Or, are you from that area? I started trying to track ( bad pun ) all the current and no longer existing tracks in Iowa, and trace back to who's tracks they were. Believe me, Iowa had a lot of tracks. South Dakota had so reletively few tracks, that a similar project took an afternoon.

Big_Boy_4005: You hit another interest that I've tried to research from time to time-the dwindleing numbers of class ones. Any idea where to find a year by year list of class ones? I think the subject would be an excellent topic for a book by sombody like Brian Solomon. You could have history,geography,nostalgia, maps and pretty pictures all wrapped up in an interesting book.

Thanks to Chris / CopCarSS for my avatar.

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Posted by Big_Boy_4005 on Friday, August 12, 2005 2:51 AM
Murph, If I remember correctly I used Moody's in the business reference section of the library. It was a lot of page flipping. There wasn't just a list, but that was 20 years ago. Prehaps there is an easier way to do it with a computer now.

Class ones over time is a moving target because periodicly the revenue requirements changed. Add to that all of the merger activity over the years, and the number of class ones operating in any given state drops like a rock. I'm not sure what today's revenue levels are. My guess is that Illinois still has the most, but that's almost a no brainer.

I'll try to find my data. I'm sure it's here. Like I said I found the graphics, but I hadn't put any of the text on on the chart. I don't remember what it all means without the key and the years of the survey.
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Posted by nanaimo73 on Friday, August 12, 2005 9:47 AM
Elliot,
This site shows a bridge at the north end of Brainerd.
Go to the next page and click on the logging railways map.
www.macalester.edu/geography/mage/urban/Brainerd/rail.htm  
Since this is north of the Twin Cities, my numbers for the bridges there will change, and that would make your posted numbers different for now. I won't be changing them for awhile though.
There is supposed to be a book called "Logging Railroads of Northern Minnesota" by Franklin King. I'll see if I can get it through an Interlibrary loan, and I suspect that will add at least one more.

You can see the rails at the bottom just west of the road. This would be the south end of the Minnesota and International which had been the "Brainerd Northern International Railroad" and became part of NP in 1941 or 1942.
www.terraserver.microsoft.com/image.aspx?T=1&S=11&Z=15&X=1023&Y=12842&W
Dale
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Posted by Big_Boy_4005 on Friday, August 12, 2005 11:25 AM
Yup Dale, that's another bridge. The Macalester link is very good with the map and photo. At one time ( as late as the late 70's) there was continuous rail from Little Falls to International Falls via Brainerd and Bemidji. The first piece to go was that short section between Camp Ripley and Brainerd. After that, BN closed the whole thing. I have a railroad atlas published in 1985 that still shows it open.

By the way, MNG is Minnesota National Guard (Camp Ripley). I wouldn't be surprised if BNSF has the state pay for any maintenance on that spur, since they probably wanted to abandon it. I doubt it sees much traffic. Maybe they send a detail out from the camp to clear the weeds from time to time.[swg]
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Posted by nanaimo73 on Friday, August 12, 2005 12:05 PM
If I knew the year the M&SL bridge at Keithsburg and the CB&Q bridge at Alton opened I would be happy with everything south of Minnesota. The Gophers are causing me grief. I did a search on "Keithsburg rail bridge" and had a good laugh when this thread came up.
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Posted by Big_Boy_4005 on Friday, August 12, 2005 12:16 PM
Dale, that's happened to me a couple of times too. Searching for something and being sent to something I said.

Remember, computers only know what we tell them.[swg]
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Posted by blhanel on Friday, August 12, 2005 9:41 PM
Hey guys, here's one shot of #31 that I had readily available- I think I have a few more on a CD somewhere that show the bridge in various stages of swung open.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/85729295@N00/33545398/
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Posted by Big_Boy_4005 on Saturday, August 13, 2005 12:04 AM
Nice pics, once I got in there I flipped through all of the train shots. I see you visited the Twin Cities.
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Posted by DanRaitz on Saturday, August 13, 2005 8:22 AM
one problem.
That bridge on the north side of Brainerd is not the Minnesota & International RR bridge. The M&I was incorparated in 1900 taking over the assets of the Brainerd & Northern Minnesota RR. The M&I used the Northern Pacific bridge to cross the Mississippi River and then turned north to Bemidji.
http://terraserver.microsoft.com/image.aspx?T=1&S=10&Z=15&X=2034&Y=25671&W
As to that bridge that you are showing, I don't know who's it is (was?).

Dan
If women don't find you handsome, they should at least find you handy .... Red Green
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Posted by nanaimo73 on Saturday, August 13, 2005 8:56 AM
I read that the M&I basically closed down around 1932 or 1933 and I was thinking NP shifted the line to their bridge when they took over after 1941. I think I'll list it as a possible bridge for now. My 1942 atlas shows the route using the NP bridge.
This would help
www.upress.umn.edu/Books/K/king_minnesota.html
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Posted by DanRaitz on Saturday, August 13, 2005 9:34 AM
The M&I was in operation until 1941 when the NP took over at a forecloser sale.
As to that bridge in question, I looked at some of my topo maps and it shows it to be a highway bridge, CR25 to be exact.

Dan
If women don't find you handsome, they should at least find you handy .... Red Green
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Posted by Big_Boy_4005 on Saturday, August 13, 2005 10:30 AM
Actually, it looks like you are both right. Go back to this link and look at the photo and both maps enlarged.

www.macalester.edu/geography/mage/urban/Brainerd/rail.htm

The narrow gauge logging road that used that bridge, never connected with the NP. I suspect that when the logging road went out, the site was converted to the county road, and has subsequently been enlarged.

So, by Dale's standards, there really was another railroad bridge over the Mississippi. It was a narrow gauge logging railroad bridge that is now a road bridge.
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Posted by blhanel on Saturday, August 13, 2005 3:15 PM
QUOTE: Originally posted by Big_Boy_4005

Nice pics, once I got in there I flipped through all of the train shots. I see you visited the Twin Cities.


Yes, I get up there quite a bit. Was born in Mankato and raised up in Prior Lake, just south of Shakopee. My folks still live there. My Mom grew up in northwest Wisconsin, so that area's pretty much like home as well.
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Posted by Murphy Siding on Sunday, August 14, 2005 8:21 PM
Quote from Big_Boy_4005:

Class ones over time is a moving target because periodicly the revenue requirements changed. Add to that all of the merger activity over the years, and the number of class ones operating in any given state drops like a rock. I'm not sure what today's revenue levels are. My guess is that Illinois still has the most, but that's almost a no brainer.

There is the forward to an excellent book!

Thanks to Chris / CopCarSS for my avatar.

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Posted by Big_Boy_4005 on Monday, August 15, 2005 1:26 AM
Dale, I see you're down to the Twin Cities with your renumbering. When you pu***hrough, I go back and renumber in all my posts. It figures you found the 52nd in northern Minnesota. It couldn't have been in Louisana. That would have been too easy.[;)]
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Posted by nanaimo73 on Monday, August 15, 2005 1:31 AM

I should have started in Louisiana and gone up. I put in an interlibrary request for Logging Railroads of Minnesota. I think it will show 2 more (just a guess).

Dale
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Posted by Big_Boy_4005 on Monday, August 15, 2005 9:01 AM
QUOTE: Originally posted by nanaimo73

I should have started in Louisiana and gone up. I put in an interlibrary request for Logging Railroads of Minnesota. I think it will show 2 more (just a guess).


Oh no, I hope not. I must say, you are being thorough. No logging roads of Iowa though, thank God.[:p]

I guess I'll wait til the dust settles.[;)]
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Posted by Anonymous on Monday, August 15, 2005 8:40 PM
i am greatly impressed. while i know little of the twin cities area, i do know more about
the crossings st. louis to the south. i assume that mckinley in st louis is still open to
automobile traffic. the track ran alongside the vehicles. you have done a great job to
include ferries. there appears to be some evidence that ferries once operated at
memphis near the present bridge sites. the two ferries just south of cairo are not well
known, esp. the one at belmont. huey long at metairie la has some interesting
aspects. also -- missing are the ferries that operated for southern pacific and missouri
pacific-t&p passenger trains near downtown new orleans before huey long opened.
mike palmieri operates the louisiana rail site and has information as to their location
on the east and west banks and connections to the stations in new orleans. this also
preceded the opening of n.o.u.p.t. serving all passenger trains. he has e-mail access,
and contributes frequently to loconotes. the downtown pair of ferries would be the
southernmost rail crossings of the mississippi river.

theo sommerkamp crosstie@wowway.com
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Posted by beaulieu on Tuesday, August 16, 2005 12:57 AM
nanaimo73 here is more information for you

The bridge at LaCrosse, WI opened November 27, 1876 bridge #28

The bridge W&StP (C&NW) bridge at Winona opened May 26th 1871 and collapsed the following day. Replacement opened January 21, 1872. Abandonment approved
12/24/1977 Bridge #26

The bridge at Hastings, MN opened December 9th, 1871 bridge #24

Bridge #20 opened September 29th, 1869

Bridge #25 opened July 1882 no exact date found. Abandoned 1952 no exact date found


Bridge #19 opened December 4th, 1880


I'll get you the rest of the dates for the Minnesota bridges tomorrow.

John Beaulieu
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Posted by beaulieu on Tuesday, August 16, 2005 11:55 PM
Further additions to information on the list

Bridge #5 Was built by the Mississippi, Hill City and Western, date unknown, the whole railroad was abandoned in 1935.

Bridge #12 opened June 12th, 1872, not as part of the Duluth to Willmar Line, but rather as part of the St. Paul to Moorhead line.

Bridge # 15 opened May 1st, 1867


Short of time that's all for today.

John Beaulieu
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Posted by Anonymous on Thursday, August 18, 2005 5:37 PM
WOW lots of realy good info in thid hot topic good job guys[:D]glennbob[:)]
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Posted by Anonymous on Thursday, August 18, 2005 5:38 PM
Sorry for the typpoo(typo) glennbob
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Posted by nanaimo73 on Friday, August 19, 2005 12:17 PM
Is this a railroad bridge in the background ?
www.stpaulterminal.org/historical/elevator/3.jpg
Dale
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Posted by DanRaitz on Friday, August 19, 2005 8:50 PM
I think we missed one[:0]

There is one just west of Grand Rapids, MN. It is on the BNSF (ex GN), it is a spur track serving the Ainsworth Oxboard plant (ex Potlatch).
So this one would be #5
http://terraserver-usa.com/image.aspx?T=1&S=10&Z=15&X=2276&Y=26165&W=1&qs=%7cgrand+rapids%7cmn%7c
Dan
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Posted by Big_Boy_4005 on Saturday, August 20, 2005 12:33 AM
QUOTE: Originally posted by nanaimo73

Is this a railroad bridge in the background ?
www.stpaulterminal.org/historical/elevator/3.jpg


Dale, I think that is the old St Paul High Bridge, which was rebuilt within the last 15 years. It's not railroad, Smith Avenue.

Now that one in Grand Rapids could be the real deal.
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Posted by nanaimo73 on Saturday, August 20, 2005 2:01 AM
Thanks Dan. Thanks Elliot. The topo map shows a 4 mile line going to a gravel pit to the west. Most of that track looks like it is gone.
The bridge was built before 1970 ?
Fifty-three works for me.[:)]
Dale
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Posted by DanRaitz on Saturday, August 20, 2005 7:34 AM
It used to go out to Tioga pit (open pit iron mine). The pit is now abandoned and filled with ice cold water and big Lake Trout. You can still see the roadbed curving away to the southwest, after you cross the bridge. The Ainsworth OSB plant (Ox Board?) is only one or two miles past the bridge, the track that keeps going straight. Last summer BNSF replaced some of the (west end) wooden pilings and deck with with steel and concrete.

Dan
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Posted by nanaimo73 on Saturday, August 20, 2005 9:07 AM
Iron ore makes sense. I was thinking that line looked a bit expensive for a ballast pit.
I did not know Ainsworth had any oriented strand board plants in the USA.

Elliot, any guesses on these two ?

This could be anywhere.
www.rrpicturearchives.net/showPicture.aspx?id=83223  

Is this the Short line bridge at Minneapolis ?
www.rrpicturearchives.net/showPicture.aspx?id=83225
Dale
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Posted by beaulieu on Sunday, August 21, 2005 9:55 AM
QUOTE: Originally posted by nanaimo73

Iron ore makes sense. I was thinking that line looked a bit expensive for a ballast pit.
I did not know Ainsworth had any oriented strand board plants in the USA.

Elliot, any guesses on these two ?

This could be anywhere.
www.rrpicturearchives.net/showPicture.aspx?id=83223

Is this the Short line bridge at Minneapolis ?
www.rrpicturearchives.net/showPicture.aspx?id=83225


The first one is not over the Mississippi River, totally wrong look to the banks.

The second one is the Short Line Bridge.
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Posted by Big_Boy_4005 on Sunday, August 21, 2005 12:26 PM
QUOTE: Originally posted by beaulieu

QUOTE: Originally posted by nanaimo73

Iron ore makes sense. I was thinking that line looked a bit expensive for a ballast pit.
I did not know Ainsworth had any oriented strand board plants in the USA.

Elliot, any guesses on these two ?

This could be anywhere.
www.rrpicturearchives.net/showPicture.aspx?id=83223

Is this the Short line bridge at Minneapolis ?
www.rrpicturearchives.net/showPicture.aspx?id=83225


The first one is not over the Mississippi River, totally wrong look to the banks.

The second one is the Short Line Bridge.


I would have to agree with this assesment on both counts. That's a very nice classic photo of the Short Line Bridge, only wish it was in color.

I was out and about again yesterday, and got lucky at Robert Street. Morning light would have been better, but beggers can't be choosers.



Then it was down river to Inver Grove Heights to catch the remnents of the Rock Island bridge. I would like to spend some more time on this one, because it is so cool, and becoming so fragile as it rots. Much of the wooden approach trestle on the west bank is still there, though severely overgrown by trees.



I was in a hurry again, so the lighting isn't the best. You can just make out the swing span in the distance, which is permanently open for river navigation.



The sun was nearly gone when I got to the Omaha Bridge. The long exposure is slightly blurry, sorry. You can just see part of it in the open position. I think I can still get a better angle shot of this, and do justice to it's asymetrical counter weighted construction.



Dale, I see that you corrected the St Paul Bridge and Terminal's name, and added a link. I have always said that the train world is a small place. I know Dave Zuhn, and have been to his house and seen his layout. I've been meaning to contact him and get on his operating crew. That bridge is a booger to get a photo of, because the sewage trearment plant blocks access on the east bank and the UP has the west bank totally closed off.

By the way, I may have to shoot the next person who finds another bridge site north of the Iowa border. [banghead][:-,][sigh][swg] I'll go back and renumber again.[:(][;)]


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Posted by nanaimo73 on Sunday, August 21, 2005 12:55 PM
Thanks John. Thanks for the photos Elliot.
I'm about done unless that logging railway book comes. I don't mind renumbering, I've had enough practice now and it is easy. I've given up trying to find any more dates. I can't even find the date the last train went over the Stone Arch bridge.
I would like Steve Glischinski to see this. I think he could do an interesting Trains article on it.
I came across this but I have not looked into it yet-
http://memory.loc.gov/ammem/collections/habs_haer/  
I put links to that site at Winona, Ft. Madison, Keokuk, Alton, Eads, MacArthur and Memphis.
Dale
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Posted by Anonymous on Monday, August 22, 2005 4:32 PM
speaking of crossing the mississippi I took a trip to new orlins in the late 1960's back then one of the methods of crossing, was the ferry boat ,it travled from the west at n.o. to the east side at a town called algers they were takilin at that time of compleeting a bride, hope that is of some help . glennbob
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Posted by samfp1943 on Tuesday, August 23, 2005 4:55 PM
This is quite an a piece of research..Congratulations! Having grown up in Memphis,Tn, and being one who grew up enjoying trains in Memphis, I would like to add some small bits of info: The Harahan Bridge #50 was originally both railway ,and wagonway structure, planks laid down covering the ties and deck provided a surface for wagons, horses and later automotive traffic. There still remains in the eastern abutment a stone strong room that was the toll repository. At some point in the 1930's or early 40's two ten foot wide roadways were attached to the outsides of the Harahan Bridge, allowing both automobiles and trains to cross at the same time, This was quite a scary ride for a young boy when a train was also crossing, as the bridge shook and the noise was very loud. Bridge #49 has always been referred to locally as the 'Frisco Bridge'. I have been down one the east end on many occassions to watch the trains come across, especially , in cotton harvest season, when the Frisco would use a large pool of wooden sheathed boxcars to transport cotton to the markets. Spontaneous combustion would cause fires in the bales and it was really a sight to see one or more of these flaming cars coming across the bridge with the flames shooting through the upper structure of the bridge so they could get the cars to Memphis, where the Fire Department would be waiting to put out the fires, quite a sight. Because of this kind of Danger there was a watchman stationed on the bridge to ck for fires, and they usually were not adverse to some company as they walked to the Ark. side and back. It was one of these fellows who told me that the westernmost pier of the bridge was a floater, due to scouring there by the river. The bridges are accessible from surface streets and provide plenty of action then and now, as long as one does not trespass on the railroads property there are plenty of locations at Memphis for good pictures.

 

 


 

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Posted by samfp1943 on Tuesday, August 23, 2005 5:19 PM
One last addition, until the 1950's there was a ferry landing under the Harahan and Memphis and Arkansas Bridges. I think it ceased to be used in the late 1940's but it was the Rock Island's and their passenger and freight came in to Memphis via car ferry from the Arkansas side . It was a pretty steep climb up the Bluff to get to the station and Coach yards on the South Bluffs. The site has been occupied for a number of years by a company that services and provisions the passing towboat traffic.

 

 


 

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Posted by DanRaitz on Wednesday, August 24, 2005 10:21 PM

Are we ready to renumber every bridge?
I was going through some of my papers and came across a partial copy of the 1914 Sanborn map of Bemidji, MN. It shows 4 RR bridges on the Mississippi River between Lake Irvine and Lake Bemidji.


The first one was the Minneapolis, Red Lake & Manitoba RR (abandoned, removed 1938).
The second is the Great Northern Rwy (currently in use, BNSF).
The third was the Minneapolis, St. Paul & Sault Ste. Marie Ry (abandoned - in place).
And the fourth was the Minnesota & International Ry (later Northern Pacific) (abandoned, removed).
Dan

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Posted by Big_Boy_4005 on Thursday, August 25, 2005 10:32 AM
QUOTE: Originally posted by DanRaitz

Are we ready to renumber every bridge?
I was going through some of my papers and came across a partial copy of the 1914 Sanborn map of Bemidji, MN. It shows 4 RR bridges on the Mississippi River between Lake Irvine and Lake Bemidji.

http://www.railimages.com/albums/danielraitz/aci.sized.jpg

The first one was the Minneapolis, Red Lake & Manitoba RR (abandoned, removed 1938).
The second is the Great Northern Rwy (currently in use, BNSF).
The third was the Minneapolis, St. Paul & Sault Ste. Marie Ry (abandoned - in place).
And the fourth was the Minnesota & International Ry (later Northern Pacific) (abandoned, removed).
Dan


Dan, fortunately I haven't gotten around to my renumbering after the second addition. This means I won't have to shoot you. I'm waiting til the dust settles.[swg]
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Posted by MP173 on Friday, August 26, 2005 4:36 PM
I dont have anything to add to this, but in my limited travels across the Mississippi, I have always enjoyed not only the railroad bridges, but also simply crossing the river.

Great job to you guys.

ed
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Posted by dmcclendon on Saturday, August 27, 2005 4:19 PM
Whenever I travel to Memphis I always try to use the I-55 Bridge so I can watch Rail traffic on the Frisco and Harahan Bridges.
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Posted by nanaimo73 on Saturday, August 27, 2005 10:20 PM
Thanks for the help guys.
Dan-I still need 5 more to make 60.[:D]
Elliot-Would Dave Zuhn know when the SPB&T bridge first opened ?
I have added google links for 24 bridges. These have better pictures but you need to click on satellite.
Dale
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Posted by Big_Boy_4005 on Sunday, August 28, 2005 2:38 AM
Dale, he might. His model railroad is based on that part of the metro area, more so than mine is. He has done a good deal of research to create his design. If you'd like, I could ask him, since I had wanted to talk to him anyway.

I haven't had a chance to look at the new pictures yet, I'm falling asleep.[|)][zzz][zzz]
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Posted by DanRaitz on Sunday, September 4, 2005 10:15 PM
Does anybody know how the "Huey P. Long" bridge handled Katrina?

Dan
If women don't find you handsome, they should at least find you handy .... Red Green
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Posted by UPTRAIN on Tuesday, September 6, 2005 6:59 AM
I noticed in that first post that some of my photos came up in the search, I love this one: http://www.rrpicturearchives.net/showPicture.aspx?id=88481 that was a joy to make, lol. Try a keyword search on "Thebes Bridge", more should come up....ahh...I did for you: http://www.rrpicturearchives.net/srchThumbs.aspx?srch=thebes+bridge .

Pump

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Posted by Anonymous on Monday, September 26, 2005 8:39 PM
wow--all I can say is that someone has done a lot of diligent work! we should all be
grateful for this excellent contribution. I am not familiar with the upper Mississippi. I
have crossed by rail at Newport, twice on the Milw Rd, at Ft Madison, Merchants, Eads,
and MacArthur at St Louis, both at Memphis, and Huey Long at New Orleans. I have
also used road vehicles by several where this was possible [some still rail have been
closed to vehicular]. is McKinley at St Louis closed to vehicular? We may need new
rail bridges to relieve New Orleans, especially if the Old River Structure fails and sends
the Mississippi out through the Atchafalaya 80 miles west of New Orleans. Several
geologists think this a real, even eventual, possibility.
Theo Sommerkamp crosstie@wowway.com
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Posted by The Block House on Friday, September 30, 2005 9:26 PM
Having grown up in Memphis I have always been partial to the bridges of the lower Mississippi River. (Caro to head of pass south of New Orleans). The bridges are bigger , taller and the distance between crossings are greater. I have always told my non -railroad frinds that the crossings of the Mississippe River are the heart of the economey of middle America.
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Posted by blhanel on Sunday, October 16, 2005 11:11 PM
Hey nanaimo73, I have some new shots of #33 in Dubuque if you're interested.
http://blhanel.rrpicturearchives.net/archivethumbs.aspx?id=7519
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Posted by nanaimo73 on Monday, October 17, 2005 9:26 AM
Thanks Brian.
I went to add them in and I ended up just adding this one by mistake.
http://blhanel.rrpicturearchives.net/showPicture.aspx?id=207431  
Nice shot. Looks like you had a good day.
How does this bridge operate ? I would assume it is open for barges 90% of the time and CN has an operator there 24-7 ? Have you had thoughts of running across ?
Something like that would be easier up north.
Dale
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Posted by blhanel on Monday, October 17, 2005 4:07 PM
There was a pickup truck parked immediately behind where I took that picture from, I assume it belonged to the operator. I walked over to the track and looked down through the bridge, and saw the operator standing near the middle of the second span, which rotates on the pier that it is centered on. I wasn't going to even attempt to walk out there. I suspect that it does have to be manned 24/7, since if it's open the operator is stuck out there, and there's more barge and large boat traffic than there is train traffic on that bridge.

EDIT: I bet it's not 24/7 starting sometime in late December or early January, for about three months! Extended vacations for the operators...
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Posted by riverrailfan on Wednesday, October 26, 2005 12:04 AM
I've been trying to research bridge 29 in Winona,MN for about a year and have given up for now as the info is not out there. I've spent my summers of my childhood in Winona watching the trains cross the #29 swing bridge. I never knew #30 exsisted until a year ago as that bidge was on the eastside of town which is industrial. Actually my grandparents did live pretty close to it. My last visit to Winona in July gave me alittle more info on where to look for history on the town. So that will be part of my next visit.
http://www.mvr.usace.army.mil/Bosse/Plates/Plate16.htm
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Posted by Victrola1 on Monday, November 14, 2005 3:09 PM
#38 Keithsburg, IL M&StL

I believe what remains of this bridge was constructed around 1912. You can see the piers nearby of the earlier Iowa Central structure it replaced. "Mile Posts on the Prairie" will tell you more if you can find a copy of this M&StL history. As a kid, I remember riding a jon boat under the bridge while a string of M&StL F units pulled an impressive length of freight cars overhead. Passenger traffic never figured large on this route.

The C&NW was quick to downgrade the Oskaloosa, IA to Peoria, IL mainline of the old M&StL. Around 1972, the line through Keithsburg was abandon. The bridge and a short stretch of track remained between Keithsburg, IL. & Oakville, IA.

The elevator in Oakville was reportedly interested in using the bridge to drop grain directly from hopper cars into barges. There was even talk of rebuilding track west to Morning Sun, IA and a connection with the Rock Island running between Burlington, IA and the Twin Cities. The Rock Island bankruptcy resulted in abandonment between Burlington and Cedar Rapids, IA. Nothing ever came of this rail to river transfer plan.

The M&StL bridge was an impressive vertical lift span. I say was.

Once abandon, the lift span was hauled up so barges could pass. In the early 1980's, local youths decided to include the M&StL bridge in their July 4th celebrations. They scaled the lift span up to the the bridge tender's shack and threw fireworks inside.

The resulting fire fueled by old grease caused the lift cables to fail. The lift span fell into the river blocking commercial navigation for several days. The US Army Corps of Engineers dynamited the lift span and removed the remains.

Other than the lift span, the M&StL bridge remains. Conversation with locals in a Keithsburg tavern over a decade ago brought up the Corps leaving the rest of the bridge in place since it was no hazard to navigation and could be quickly made capable of hauling heavy vehicles in case of "national emergency."

The M&StL bridge is the only one crossing the Mississipp Between Muscatine, IA and Burlington, IA., a distance of 50 - 55 miles. Proposals to refit the bridge for highway traffic have surfaced. Width is a problem as the bridge is only a single track structure.
Again, talk is as far it this has gotten.

If you wi***o view this structue, forget about doing so from the west without a jon boat. There is no road access anywhere near where it reaches Iowa. A steel trestle carries the bridge across a slough from Iowa to an island. From this island to Illinois, large steel trusses span the gap between piers. The void over the navigation channel where the lift span was is close to the Illinois shore.

Your best view of this bridge is from where Keithsburg's main street is stopped by the Mississippi. Ammenities in Keithsburg are few. Keithsburg never was very large and the flood of 1993 wiped out much of what was. Keithsburg is between IL 92 and US 34 on the Illinois Great River Road. This scenic byway is well marked.

Access to the bridge on foot is no longer possible. The M&StL right of way between IL 17 and the bridge was ripped out to aid drainage. If you wi***o make physical contact with the bridge, bring a boat.


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Posted by wpayne on Monday, November 14, 2005 7:01 PM
I might have missed it in the forum, but did you note how long the bridges are? Which one is the longest and the shortest?
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Posted by Trailryder on Monday, November 14, 2005 9:35 PM
Here are 2 pictures of two differant bridges that I have visited.

Bridge 34 Chicago Milwaukee St. Paul and Pacific Between Sabula Iowa and Savanna Illinois


Bridge 43 Wabash bridge between Hannibal Missouri and East Hannibal Illinois

http://www.pbase.com/trailryder/random
Enjoy,
Later Bill
If You Don't know where your going, Any Road will Take you There.
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Posted by UPTRAIN on Wednesday, November 16, 2005 12:30 PM
QUOTE: Originally posted by nanaimo73

St. Louis
Bridge #46 is called Merchants bridge. It opened in 1890 and has been operated by Terminal Railroad Association of St. Louis since.
http://terraserver.microsoft.com/image.aspx?T=1&S=12&Z=15&X=931&Y=5355&W
http://maps.google.com/maps?ll=38.675158,-90.186961&spn=0.005045,0.009887
http://bridges.midwestplaces.com/mo/st-louis-city/merchants/
Amtrak uses Merchants bridge for Chicago-St. Louis trains
Status-good

St. Louis
Bridge #48 is Eads bridge. This was the first St. Louis bridge, opening in 1874. The Terminal Railroad Association of St. Louis was formed in 1889 to run the bridge. The last rail traffic was in 1974 and the bridge was traded to the City in 1989. The St. Louis Metrolink light rail system now uses the bridge. The Gateway arch is on the west bank just to the north.
http://terraserver.microsoft.com/image.aspx?T=1&S=11&Z=15&X=1864&Y=10698&W
http://maps.google.com/maps?ll=38.628999,-90.179418&spn=0.005048,0.009887
http://bridges.midwestplaces.com/mo/st-louis-city/eads/
www.asce.org/history/brdg_eads.html
127 b/w and 1 color photo of this bridge can be seen on the following website by searching "mississippi bridge" and going to #9
http://memory.loc.gov/ammem/collections/habs_haer/
Eads bridge was used by Amtrak for the National Limited until October 1, 1979.
Status-abandoned (by railroads)

St. Louis
Bridge #49 is named MacArthur bridge. This was built by the city because the other two bridges were owned by the TRRA. MacArthur opened in 1907 and was traded to the TRRA in 1989. A train can be seen on the east end of the bridge.
http://terraserver.microsoft.com/image.aspx?T=1&S=11&Z=15&X=1863&Y=10694&W
http://maps.google.com/maps?ll=38.614465,-90.184654&spn=0.005049,0.009887
http://bridges.midwestplaces.com/mo/st-louis-city/macarthur/
73 b/w photos of this bridge can be seen on the following website by searching "mississippi bridge" and going to #18
http://memory.loc.gov/ammem/collections/habs_haer/
Amtrak used this bridge for the River Cities from April 29, 1984 until November 4, 1993. Status-good


I found a couple errors there, Bridge # 46, the Merchant's Bridge is rarely used by Amtrak. It more commonly uses #49, The MacArthur Bridge, the Eads Bridge # 48 now carries highway traffic on a new overhead deck. Hope this helps![:D]

Pump

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Posted by Victrola1 on Friday, November 18, 2005 1:20 PM
http://reflections.mndigital.org/cdm4/item_viewer.php?CISOROOT=/army&CISOPTR=368&REC=4

I found this link to an 1889 photo of the Iowa Central Railroad bridge at Keithsburg, IL. From the looks of it, a 40 ton tractor trailer would strain its capacity. This bridge was replaced around 1912. The cut stone piers of the first bridge are askew, but still visible next the abandon 1912 structure.
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Posted by Anonymous on Saturday, November 19, 2005 3:44 PM
Sorry to intrude, but I am very lost! Will you guys please help a pitiful single mom here? I need to know where to go to learn how to start with trains. I would like to buy my 8 year old son a starter set for Christmas, but I want to do it right! I hope it will be something he enjoys for years. Thank you so much!
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Posted by Anonymous on Saturday, November 19, 2005 3:45 PM
Again, BIG sorry! Posted my request to the wrong place. I am looking for MODEL trains. :)
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Posted by nanaimo73 on Sunday, November 20, 2005 12:15 AM
Zach (UPTRAIN), thanks for the update on Amtrak, and the Thebes pictures.
Victrola1-I really enjoyed your post, and I added that link.
Bill (Trailryder)- thanks for the photos, I put the second one in my post.
wpayne- I'm pretty sure the Huey P Long is the longest, and the Bemidji survivor is probably the shortest.
riverrailfan- thanks for the Winona link.
Brian (blhanel)- I put all of your shots in.

Thanks everyone !
[:)]
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Posted by Anonymous on Sunday, November 20, 2005 7:04 PM
QUOTE: Originally posted by sommerkamp

wow--all I can say is that someone has done a lot of diligent work! we should all be
grateful for this excellent contribution. I am not familiar with the upper Mississippi. I
have crossed by rail at Newport, twice on the Milw Rd, at Ft Madison, Merchants, Eads,
and MacArthur at St Louis, both at Memphis, and Huey Long at New Orleans. I have
also used road vehicles by several where this was possible [some still rail have been
closed to vehicular]. is McKinley at St Louis closed to vehicular? We may need new
rail bridges to relieve New Orleans, especially if the Old River Structure fails and sends
the Mississippi out through the Atchafalaya 80 miles west of New Orleans. Several
geologists think this a real, even eventual, possibility.
Theo Sommerkamp crosstie@wowway.com
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Posted by Anonymous on Sunday, November 20, 2005 7:05 PM
QUOTE: Originally posted by sommerkamp

wow--all I can say is that someone has done a lot of diligent work! we should all be
grateful for this excellent contribution. I am not familiar with the upper Mississippi. I
have crossed by rail at Newport, twice on the Milw Rd, at Ft Madison, Merchants, Eads,
and MacArthur at St Louis, both at Memphis, and Huey Long at New Orleans. I have
also used road vehicles by several where this was possible [some still rail have been
closed to vehicular]. is McKinley at St Louis closed to vehicular? We may need new
rail bridges to relieve New Orleans, especially if the Old River Structure fails and sends
the Mississippi out through the Atchafalaya 80 miles west of New Orleans. Several
geologists think this a real, even eventual, possibility.
Theo Sommerkamp crosstie@wowway.com


The McKinley is closed at present for the purpose of restoring the bridge. It is scheduled to reopen in 2007.
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Posted by Trailryder on Thursday, November 24, 2005 12:56 AM
I was in Clinton Iowa today and took some photos(7) of Mississippi bridge #35, to see them goto: http://www.pbase.com/trailryder/random

UP bridge over Mississippi at Clinton, Iowa swing span open.

I also took the time to look up the history of this bridge as published in the Whiteside County History Book by Wayne Bastian.
here is the scan, some of the dates are off from your info by a year.

Taken from
A History of Whiteside County Illinois
By Wayne Bastian
Copyright 1968
Page 121 & 125


Even before the railroad tracks arrived at Fulton City, prelimin­ary plans were being made to cross the great river which was a bar­rier to the westward advance of the Iron Horse. In 1853, a legislative act authorized the formation of the Mississippi Railroad Bridge Co. and gave it permission to cross the river at the Narrows at Fulton City. The Galena and Chicago Union Railroad Company acquired con­trol of the charter.
The company began a series of negotiations with the Chicago, Iowa and Nebraska Railroad Co. as to the location of the bridge and little progress was made. In 1859 an agreement was reached but the Illinois company's officials failed to approve of the deal and lost the
charter. The Iowa company immediately started negotiations with a company which had acquired the bridge charter of the defunct Cam­anche, Albany and Mendota Railroad Co. Work commenced on J anu­ary 15, 1859 and the bridge was built to Little Rock Island.
On January 19, 1860, the first train ran from Fulton to the island where it was greeted with a salute of 12 guns. Freight had been transferred across the river by steamboat or teams when the ice was thick enough. With the completion of the first part of the bridge, freight cars were transferred to a specially-built steamboat! the Union, and carried across the intervening space. It has been claimed that in the year of 1861 tracks were laid on the ice to the island and freight cars were hauled across by ropes.
During the year 1864, the rest of the bridge was completed. It was during the same year that the Galena and Chicago Union compa­ny was consolidated with the Chicago and Northwestern railroad and lost its identity. In 1866 the Chicago and Northwestern company built the big grain elevator at Fulton on the riverfront. Millions of bushels of wheat were transferred from the river boats during the ensuing years and it was razed in 1897 when there was no longer need for it.
In 1886, work of making the line double-tracked was started and, in 1907, a new bridge replaced the early one. It was also double­tracked and the cost was believed to be about $2,000,000.

When the Chicago, Burlington and Quincy company reached the Chicago and Northwestern's right-of-way near the bridge, it was stopped short of its two goals, entry into Fulton and permission to use the bridge. The Chicago and Northwestern Railroad Company obtained a permanent injunction forbidding the rival company to cross its property and refused to allow it to cross into Iowa. During the 1870s, the frustrated company drove a few pilings into the river bot­tom near the mouth of Cedar Creek. If it was a threatening move­ment planned to force the Chicago and Northwestern company, it fail­ed in its purpose.
Ten years of futile manoeuvring passed and, in 1882, the Chicago Burlington and Quincy Railroad Company made determined prepara­tions to cross the forbidden right-of-way. The company was protect­ed by an $8,000 bond, furnished by Fulton citizens, to protect it against suit. Fulton businessmen also applied pressure on the officials of the Chicago and Northwestern Railroad Company. Just before a scheduled court hearing, the argument was negotiated and the long­denied permission was granted to cross over and enter Fulton.
The Chicago and Northwestern railroad bridge was still forbid­den territory to the other company and the editor of the Fulton Jour­nal commented on the impasse and declared that it would be a "cold day" when the Burlington line would get permission to cross into Clinton. The editor was right. On January 20, 1885, the first Chi­cago, Burlington and Quincy train crossed the river and the ther­mometer registered a chill 25 degrees below zero.


Later Bill
If You Don't know where your going, Any Road will Take you There.
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Posted by engineer on Friday, December 2, 2005 7:09 PM
Here is some additional information to the ferry crossing at Ste.Genevieve, MO. There was a ferry that crossed the Mississippi from Thomure, MO to Kellog, IL. (I don't belive Thomure exists anymore) This line started life as the Illinois-Southern RR. It ran from Bismarck,MO to Centralia,IL. It was later named the Mike 'n Ike, (MoPac), and it is still there, on the MO side, with ownership being the Union Pacific.

Also, a couple of miles south of that, there was a ferry crossing around Chester,IL. It was located at the Northern end of the Louis Houck Railroad. Officially known as the "Cape Girardeau Northern" I do not remember that station's name anymore. But, the ferry crossed from here to Chester.
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Posted by Big_Boy_4005 on Saturday, December 3, 2005 11:57 PM
Dale, you have done a fantastic job researching and compiling all this information. It was a lot of fun working with you on this. I think the magazine editor should really consider doing a two part series. They probably have more photos in their archives to compliment the information here. It would be even more interesting if they published this link in the story.

OK, so much for a day of self imposed, introspective, silence.[;)] Here we go, over the top. [tup][swg]

This is the tying post.
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Posted by Victrola1 on Tuesday, January 3, 2006 4:59 PM
http://memory.loc.gov/cgi-bin/ampage?collId=hhphoto&action=browse&fileName=ia/ia0100/ia0172/photos/browse.db&recNum=0&itemLink=&linkText=-1&title2=Burlington%20Bridge,%20Burlington,%20Des%20Moines%20County,%20IA&displayType=-1&maxCols=4

46 black & white photos showing in great detail the CB&Q swing span over the Mississippi at Burlington, IA. The swing span has been determined as a hazard to navigation and is slated to be replaced with a lift span.
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Posted by steve14 on Thursday, January 5, 2006 7:04 PM
One big resource you should try to find is the two volume set of books by Mary Costello. Climbing the Mississippi River Bridge by Bridge. Volume 1 published in 1995 and Volume 2 in 2002. Volume 1 goes from Louisiana to the Minnesota border and Volume 2 from there to the headwaters. The book contains a hand drawing by the author of EVERY bridge over the Mississippi River, plus several of the approaches over major connecting bodies of water.

ISBN's for the books are-- Vol 1 0-9644518-0-8, Vol 2 0-9644518-2-4

She has a short write up about each bridge and gives a pretty reliable history of ownership, use, designer, etc.

I contributed some info on the SOO/CP bridges for Volume 2.
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Posted by beaulieu on Sunday, February 5, 2006 12:15 AM
Dale, there is another crossing not covered yet. And to boot it is still somewhat active. It gets used once or twice per year. The bridge is owned by the State of Minnesota, and connects the NP to the National Guard base at Camp Ripley, MN. This is between Little Falls and Brainerd. It is a combined road and highway bridge sharing the same deck (the rails are in the pavement). BNSF power is used to bring equipment in or out.
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Posted by nanaimo73 on Sunday, February 5, 2006 9:59 AM
Thanks John.
I found it, Camp Ripley Junction-
http://terraserver.microsoft.com/image.aspx?T=1&S=11&Z=15&X=992&Y=12757&W=1&qs=%7ccamp+ripley%7c%7c  

Steve, thanks for the note on those books.

Elliot, and everyone else, thanks for your help.


Smile [:)]Smile [:)]
Dale
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Posted by nanaimo73 on Friday, April 21, 2006 9:50 AM
From the Quad Cities Times, April 21st, 2006-
http://www.qctimes.net/articles/2006/04/21/news/local/doc44486c8c76c97948201555.txt  

First railroad bridge over river opened on this date
By John Willard
On this day 150 years ago, transportation history was made in the Quad-Cities with the opening of the first railroad bridge across the Mississippi River.
With bridge workers aboard, the locomotive Fort Des Moines, of the Chicago and Rock Island Railroad, crossed the bridge between Rock Island and Davenport at dusk on Monday, April 21, 1856. At about 9 p.m., another locomotive pulling 10 heavily loaded freight cars bound for Iowa City crossed the bridge.
The next day, the first passenger train — a locomotive, baggage car and one passenger car — made the crossing.
“The church bells of the twin-cities rang out their joyous notes in honor of the achievement, and cheer upon cheer went up from the crowds along the line,” the Rock Island Argus reported on April 23, 1856.
The opening of the bridge was a significant achievement. In addition to opening up the West, the bridge signaled a shift in the nation’s transportation system from water to rail.
The Quad-Cities achieved the distinction of getting the structure through the efforts of railroad developer Henry Farnam.
Although several railroads were interested in crossing the Mississippi River in their race to reach the West, Farnam figured the Rock Island Line had the best shot because of the location of its route. It extended from Chicago to Rock Island, a distance of 181 miles, the shortest distance between Chicago and the Mississippi River. In addition, the Rock’s route was through a gentle valley free of hills and other obstructions.
In the fall of 1852, the Rock Island Line hired Farnam to build the railroad. On Feb. 22, 1854, the completion of the railroad to Rock Island was celebrated with a gala dinner in Rock Island. In June of that year, dignitaries from the East Coast rode the rails to Rock Island for a gala steamboat excursion up the Mississippi River to St. Paul, Minn., an event known as the Grand Excursion.
Just two weeks after the bridge opened to rail traffic, the steamboat Effie Afton struck a bridge pier, setting off a fire that destroyed the wooden structure. In a lawsuit filed by the steamboat’s owners, future president Abraham Lincoln represented the railroad. After lengthy litigation, the U.S. Supreme Court ultimately ruled in favor of the railroad.
The original bridge was repaired, with replacements built in 1866, 1872 and 1896. The 1896 structure still operates as the A rsenal Bridge.
The completion of the original bridge will be celebrated Sept. 14-18 during “RiverWay 2006, Celebrating the Mississippi River in the Quad-Cities: Bridging the river, connecting the continent.”
Plans call for excursions aboard a passenger train drawn by a vintage steam locomotive, a Mississippi River “ghost bridge” created by light reflected off sprays of water, and other special events.
People interested in joining the effort can contact River Action Inc. at (563) 322-2969.

John Willard can be contacted at
(563) 383-2314 or jwillard@qctimse.com.
Dale
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Posted by spokyone on Saturday, February 3, 2007 10:23 PM

Thanks for the great postings. At age 2 to 6, my family lived on southern edge of Hamilton, near the tracks. My father worked in Keokuk and due to WW2 he walked on the rail level  because the highway approach was much longer. I remember the covered road bridge on the approach. At last I have found some pics at this web site for bridge #42


http://www.hamiltonillinois.org/Final%20Photo%20Album/Historical/index.html

 

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Posted by Ishmael on Tuesday, May 1, 2007 4:03 PM

 engineer wrote:
Here is some additional information to the ferry crossing at Ste.Genevieve, MO. There was a ferry that crossed the Mississippi from Thomure, MO to Kellog, IL. (I don't belive Thomure exists anymore) This line started life as the Illinois-Southern RR. It ran from Bismarck,MO to Centralia,IL. It was later named the Mike 'n Ike, (MoPac), and it is still there, on the MO side, with ownership being the Union Pacific.

Also, a couple of miles south of that, there was a ferry crossing around Chester,IL. It was located at the Northern end of the Louis Houck Railroad. Officially known as the "Cape Girardeau Northern" I do not remember that station's name anymore. But, the ferry crossed from here to Chester.

Engineer, the town on the Missouri side was called Claryville, but is now called West Chester. You can call it anything you want because there's nothing there anymore. There is a highway bridge crossing the river at this point and some good activity on the UP on the Illinois side. I've done some research on the CGN and don't believe they ever crossed the river. In fact, they used that line so little that the grass grew over it and the farmers pulled the ties out to use for retaining walls and other projects.

The town, (again no town left) of McBride is on the BNSF (ex-Frisco) in front of the bluff.

Also the Mike 'n Ike was officially the Missouri-Illinois, and they still run from Thomure (a few houses) up into Bonne Terre. They have a heck of a grade coming south out of Bonne Terre and I have some photos of a short train climbing the hill at walking speed.

Baltimore and Ohio-America's First Railroad
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Posted by Anonymous on Friday, May 11, 2007 7:32 PM
Hi,

I am doing photo tours of each of the bridges and structures that crosses the Mississippi
River, including both auto and rail bridges. I have found two conflicting dates for the
opening of the Short Line bridge in Minneapolis (ex Milwaukee Road). The historical
society and library came up with dates in 1902. The guide below has 1880. Any idea
which one is right? Was there an earlier bridge between 1880 and 1902?

Also, does anyone know details on the history of the Quincy Bridge? The first bridge
was built in 1868. It was rebuilt on the same alignment in 1899. The 1899 bridge
had wagon paths added to each side of the structure. The new highway bridge opened
in 1930, so the wagon paths were removed from the 1899 bridge in the early 1930s.
A new bridge was built on a new alignment in 1960. My question is when was the 1899
rail bridge removed? The only source I have found gives 1943, but that cannot be right
since that would have meant no bridge for 17 years. It would also be nice to know when
the wagon decks were removed.

Thanks,

-john-
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Posted by Anonymous on Monday, May 14, 2007 4:37 PM

Thanks for the interesting post (I'm a long-time Trains subscriber, but just found this forum today). We visited Keithsburg July 5, 1981, the day the 220 foot vertical lift span was to be demolished. Unfortunately, there were some delays with placing all the charges and we had to leave for home before the structure was blown.  

I took the picture: http://i3.tinypic.com/5zfd8aw.jpg  when we returned to Keithsburg 10 years later in 1991. The gap shown in the picture is wider than the 220 feet that the lift span once bridged; when the lift span fell into the river it also dislodged the adjacent fixed span. That span and its pier were removed a few years later to improve river navigation. One can also see in the pictures the piers from an earlier railroad bridge.

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Posted by spokyone on Monday, May 14, 2007 10:06 PM

Welcome

Custom Smiley
Opa. Thanks for the post. If you visit Keithsburg again you will see this.

The bridge is in the background.





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Posted by Anonymous on Monday, May 21, 2007 4:29 PM

Hi, Bob,

   Thanks for the picture. Now where have I seen one of these engines before? Hmmm. Oh, here it is:

   I recently sold the engine. I'm 76 and the time has come to clear the display shelves and thin out my collection of Lionel postwar equipment. My heirs wouldn't have a clue as to what to do with all my stuff. I'm hanging on to some of the trains on my layout, though. Even old boys need some toys.

   I live in eastern Iowa and perhaps this fall we'll make another trip to Keithsburg. But although it's not all that far, it's not the easiest place to get to. First we head east, crossing the Mississippi at Davenport; then turn south for about 40 miles and finally go west for about 20 miles to get back to the river at Keithsburg.

   I spend time in several forums but I'm not used to this one. Is there a way when I post a reply that I can link my reply post to the one that I'm replying to?

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Posted by spokyone on Monday, May 21, 2007 6:54 PM
 Opahujo wrote:

Hi, Bob,

   Thanks for the picture. Now where have I seen one of these engines before? Hmmm. Oh, here it is:

   I recently sold the engine. I'm 76 and the time has come to clear the display shelves and thin out my collection of Lionel postwar equipment. My heirs wouldn't have a clue as to what to do with all my stuff. I'm hanging on to some of the trains on my layout, though. Even old boys need some toys.

   I live in eastern Iowa and perhaps this fall we'll make another trip to Keithsburg. But although it's not all that far, it's not the easiest place to get to. First we head east, crossing the Mississippi at Davenport; then turn south for about 40 miles and finally go west for about 20 miles to get back to the river at Keithsburg.

   I spend time in several forums but I'm not used to this one. Is there a way when I post a reply that I can link my reply post to the one that I'm replying to?

Just click on the quote box that is next to the reply button, like I just did. As you drive east on I-80 you pass the rest stop. Next exit is 38 South. Follow business route 61 in Muscatine. You will see the bridge and hiway 92 on your left. Cross the bridge and turn right at the church, then left at the stop sign on Hiway 17. Then turn right, (south) where the sign says Keithsburg. This way saves a lot of miles. Then you can continue south and go through Burlington IA on your way back.

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Posted by Anonymous on Tuesday, May 22, 2007 4:54 PM
 spokyone wrote:
 Opahujo wrote:

Hi, Bob,

   Thanks for the picture. Now where have I seen one of these engines before? Hmmm. Oh, here it is:

   I recently sold the engine. I'm 76 and the time has come to clear the display shelves and thin out my collection of Lionel postwar equipment. My heirs wouldn't have a clue as to what to do with all my stuff. I'm hanging on to some of the trains on my layout, though. Even old boys need some toys.

   I live in eastern Iowa and perhaps this fall we'll make another trip to Keithsburg. But although it's not all that far, it's not the easiest place to get to. First we head east, crossing the Mississippi at Davenport; then turn south for about 40 miles and finally go west for about 20 miles to get back to the river at Keithsburg.

   I spend time in several forums but I'm not used to this one. Is there a way when I post a reply that I can link my reply post to the one that I'm replying to?

Just click on the quote box that is next to the reply button, like I just did. As you drive east on I-80 you pass the rest stop. Next exit is 38 South. Follow business route 61 in Muscatine. You will see the bridge and hiway 92 on your left. Cross the bridge and turn right at the church, then left at the stop sign on Hiway 17. Then turn right, (south) where the sign says Keithsburg. This way saves a lot of miles. Then you can continue south and go through Burlington IA on your way back.

Thanks for the tip. I'm quite familiar with hwy 38 to Muscatine, but I had never considered the road that runs south on the other side of the river in the direction of New Boston. That route looks a lot shorter.

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Posted by blhanel on Tuesday, May 22, 2007 10:29 PM
Sign - Welcome [#welcome] to the Trains.com forum, Opahujo, from another Eastern Iowan!
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Posted by blhanel on Wednesday, May 23, 2007 8:48 PM

BTW, Dale, I got another shot of #33 at Dubuque a couple of weeks back from a different angle, complete with train...

 

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Posted by nanaimo73 on Thursday, May 24, 2007 8:06 AM
 blhanel wrote:
complete with train...

 

As it should be ! Thanks, Brian.  Smile [:)]

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Posted by Anonymous on Sunday, May 27, 2007 4:38 PM

 blhanel wrote:
Sign - Welcome [#welcome] to the Trains.com forum, Opahujo, from another Eastern Iowan!

Brian, thanks for the welcome. Check out the UP challenger (near Mechanicsville, Aug.1996) in my Sig. Sorry about the fuzzyness of the scanned photograph.

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Posted by spokyone on Friday, September 7, 2007 10:39 PM
And here is a pic of #36 at Clinton, with train hurrying to get across before our riverboat arrives.
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Posted by spokyone on Tuesday, November 20, 2007 10:42 PM

 nanaimo73 wrote:

FERRY-The Missouri-Illinois Railroad operated in Illinois and in Missouri and
connected here by boat. Service was from Ste. Genevieve, Missouri to Kellogg,
Illinois between 1902 and July 18, 1961. Bridge #51 was then used until the M-I was merged into the Missouri Pacific.
Terraserver   Googlemap   M-I article

We recently used this ferry from Illinois to MO. Ste. Genevieve is a preserved historic downtown area with many stone buildings being used as offices & gift shops etc. On the Illinois side, UP has tracks that are gated through the levee. When needed, a forklift places the concrete slabs in the guides. I did not notice where the old ROW would have been on the MO side, where it connected to the present BNSF tracks. Here is a couple of pics to share.

Approaching Missouri.

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Posted by spokyone on Tuesday, November 20, 2007 11:16 PM

 nanaimo73 wrote:

FERRY-This run was between the St. Louis & Iron Mountain (later Missouri Pacific)
at Belmont, Missouri over to the Mobile and Ohio in Columbus, Kentucky.
Ferry service ended on this route during 1911.
Terraserver   Googlemap

About 12 mile south of this location is a car ferry between Hickman KY and Dorena MO. These two towns are not very pleasing to the eye. Hickman has some barge loading facilities.
  All of the car ferries from Cassville WI to here are very similar. We have used all but one, from WI to Memphis. We saw a lot of barge traffic that cloudy day at Hickman.

 

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Posted by spokyone on Tuesday, November 20, 2007 11:27 PM
 nanaimo73 wrote:

Memphis - Harahan 
The next two bridges are beside each other at Memphis, along with the Interstate 55 bridge.
Bridge #52 is the Harahan bridge, the former Arkansas and Memphis Railway Bridge and Terminal Company (Missouri Pacific, Chicago, Rock Island and Pacific, and St. Louis Southwestern) bridge. This was opened in 1916 and is now used by Union Pacific. To the west the Union Pacific line at Briark Junction splits with the former Missouri Pacific line heading west for Bald Knob and the former Chicago, Rock Island and Pacific line (used by Cotton Belt) heads southwest for Brinkley and (formerly) Little Rock. To the east is IC Crossing, where the MP, CRI&P, SSW and SLSF lines met Illinois Central's north-south mainline. This IC line is now Canadian National, and is used by Amtrak's City of New Orleans. Five of the 11 diamonds are still located at IC Junction.
Terraserver   WikiMapia    Googlemap   article   article   Bridgehunter 
 Wikipedia   Photos   Photo   Photos   Photos 
61 b/w photos of these bridges can be seen on the following website by searching "mississippi bridge" and going to #14
http://memory.loc.gov/ammem/collections/habs_haer/  
Passenger- The Chicago, Rock Island and Pacific ran passenger trains over Harahan Bridge until November 10, 1967.  
Traffic- moderate (40 to 60 GMT)
Bridge type- fixed
.

Memphis - Frisco 
Bridge #53 is the Frisco Bridge, opened in May of 1892 for the Kansas City, Fort Scott and Memphis. The KCFS&M became part of the St. Louis-San Francisco. SLSF joined Burlington Northern in 1980 and is now BNSF. The third bridge here is Interstate 55.
To the west is Bridge Junction, where the BNSF (SLSF) line crosses over the UP and heads northwest. After 20 miles this line separates at River Junction with one line 
going to St. Louis and the other to Springfield. To the east is IC Crossing, which is now a Canadian National mainline used by Amtrak's City of New Orleans. 
Terraserver   WikiMapia   Googlemap   article   article   Bridgehunter 
ASCE article    Wikipedia   Photo   Photos   Photos 
Passenger- The last St. Louis-San Francisco passenger train using the bridge
operated on December 9, 1967. 
Traffic- heavy (60 to 100 GMT)
Bridge type- fixed


 Here is best pic from our recent trip as viewed from Martyr's Park.

 

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Posted by nanaimo73 on Wednesday, November 21, 2007 3:57 PM

Nice pitures, Bob. Thanks for posting them.

Some day I will have to complete my travels, and tour the River south from Dubuque. 

Dale
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Posted by Anonymous on Sunday, April 6, 2008 10:58 AM
Just a short note to nanaimo73 - thanks for putting in the links to my website.
Unfortunately, my URL's changed recently when I was forced to move to a new
server. So, any link that starts "http://www.visi.com/~jweeks" should be updated
to be "http://www.johnweeks.com". The hostname changed, and the ~jweeks is
no longer needed.

I have also started photographing bridges on the Missouri River. I have photos
and write-ups for South Dakota, North Dakota, and eastern Montana. There are
not many railroad bridges in this area, but the ones that are there are quite
interesting.

-john-

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Posted by nanaimo73 on Wednesday, April 9, 2008 4:06 PM

Thanks for the heads up, John.

You have done some pretty good work.

JohnWeeks.Mississippi.headwaters
JohnWeeks.Mississippi.twincities
JohnWeeks.Mississippi.upper
JohnWeeks.Mississippi.lower

JohnWeeks.Missouri.upper

JohnWeeks.home

_______________________________________________

This was recently posted on the IC Yahoo Group-

Norco, LA - Friday April 11

West of New Orleans, the Army Corps of Engineers opened the
flood gates of the Bonnet Carrie Spillway today to divert water
from the swollen Mississippi River into Lake Pontchartrain.

Three railroad trestles pass over the spillway - the CN McComb
and Baton Rouge subs, and the KCS New Orleans sub. On any
other day, the spillway is a great area to drive down into to take
pictures of trains. Since the gates have been open, the area,
which is also frequented by many people in various outdoor
activities, is now under several feet or more of water.

The gate opening is a big event in that they've only been opened
several times since the spillway's structure was built in the early
30's. I went out today to take pictures, and DID happen to catch
the first trains to cross the spillway after the noon gate opening.
There are no operational restrictions that I know of for trains
while the gates are open.

Photos:

KCS New Orleans Sub trestle:

http://www.rrpicturearchives.net/showPicture.aspx?id=1122248

Normally there is a dirt road next to the trestle, but it is now under
water. The gates had only been open about 45 minutes. I came
back a few hours later, and it was noticeably higher. The flood gates
will be open for 2-3 weeks, and eventually the water will be rise
to several feet of the trestle deck.

CN train M31971 was one of the first to cross the spillway about
40 minutes after gate opening. Power on today's train was CN
C40-8M 2429 and CN 5789 SD75I.

CN 2429:

http://www.rrpicturearchives.net/showPicture.aspx?id=1122249

M31971 making its way across the trestle. *Most of the vegetation
in the photos will be under water within a week:

http://www.rrpicturearchives.net/showPicture.aspx?id=1122250
http://www.rrpicturearchives.net/showPicture.aspx?id=1122252
http://www.rrpicturearchives.net/showPicture.aspx?id=1122254

The next across was a CN loaded grain train with BNSF hoppers:
http://www.rrpicturearchives.net/showPicture.aspx?id=1122255

After leaving the spillway, I ran across Gateway Eastern 2000
GP38-2 stopped next to the KCS yard office in Norco, LA:

http://www.rrpicturearchives.net/showPicture.aspx?id=1122256
http://www.rrpicturearchives.net/showPicture.aspx?id=1122257

Shawn - Amite, LA

Dale
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Posted by blhanel on Wednesday, October 15, 2008 10:26 PM

I hope the folks at Kalmbach can figure out how to fix this.  This thread and the Iowa Counties thread are my two all-time favorites.

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Posted by Bergie on Friday, October 17, 2008 2:40 PM

blhanel
I hope the folks at Kalmbach can figure out how to fix this.  This thread and the Iowa Counties thread are my two all-time favorites.

 

I have our tech guys looking into why the original post (and all the good info) was cut off during the transfer to the new forum platform.

Erik

Erik Bergstrom
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Posted by Bergie on Wednesday, October 29, 2008 3:09 PM

I'm happy to report that the first post is back in its entirety.

Bergie

 

Erik Bergstrom
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Posted by Brytta on Sunday, August 18, 2013 11:42 AM

I really love the photo! Great job!Cool

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Posted by samfp1943 on Tuesday, April 15, 2014 11:58 AM

    Even though this Original Post dates to July of 2005; It is a compilation of some very thorough research, and  tremendous effort by   Nanaimo 73   ( Dale )   Bow

  I had thought it lost in the Changes of Format, and Enhancements of features of the FORUM.  

  It is a pleasure to see it back, and I would hope that others will also find it a terrific body of reference materials.  Cool

 

 


 

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Posted by SSW9389 on Wednesday, October 19, 2016 9:13 AM

Recent research on the Birds Point, Missouri to Cairo, Illinois carfloat operation has revealed that it may have remained open for business until the very late 1920s. This was a Missouri Pacific car ferry with Cotton Belt as a tenant. The Cairo Mississippi River Highway Bridge opened in 1929. The Cotton Belt line to Birds Point was abandoned in late 1938. The Missouri Pacific line to Birds Point was abandoned March 31, 1942.

Tags: MP , SSW
COTTON BELT: Runs like a Blue Streak!
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Posted by JC UPTON on Friday, October 21, 2016 1:26 PM

Two  comments from Louisiana:

1) The bridge at Baton Rouge:

  a) replaced two car (carfloat) ferries; one at Angola to  Lettsworth? (L&A / KCS), one at Baton Rouge (now lost in the Exxon refinery) to  Anchorage, near Port Allen (Misouri Pacific)

b) is a single track with a 4 lane highway cantilevered on the outside of the RR thru truss

c) is (allegedly deliberately) too low for ocean going shipping 

2) The bridge at New Orleans:

a) replaced a car ferry New Orleans to Algeris (SPRR)

b) is a double track with originally a 4 (very narrow) lane highway cantilevered on the outside of the RR thru truss, but recently the highway rebuilt to 6 modern design highway lanes, requiring add on thru trusses on either side of the RR

c) is high enough for ocean going shipping to pass

d) terminates on the West (south) bank at Bridge City/Avondale (not Gretna)

 

from the Far East of the Sunset Route

(In the shadow of the Huey P Long bridge)

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Posted by arkrail on Sunday, September 23, 2018 9:16 PM

A belated addition to the list of Mississippi River crossings...

Along the Mississippi River segment between Memphis and Vicksburg, one additional river crossing existed.  Between approximately 1885 and 1890, a double track transfer boat operated between Arkansas City AR and Huntington MS.  The steamer Marion is identified in Missouri Pacific-Iron Mountain annual reports of that period as operating between those points and also described as being owned by the Little Rock & Fort Smith (owner of the Little Rock, Mississippi River & Texas), the Iron Mountain, and the Louisville, New Orleans & Texas (predecessor of the later Yazoo & Mississippi Valley.)

This route briefly carried a Railway Post Office across the river (the Little Rock & Leland RPO) and also a Pullman sleeping car line which operated St. Louis to New Orleans via Little Rock, Arkansas City, Huntington, Vicksburg and New Orleans.  Once Jay Gould consolidated his holdings in the area, and completed a line into Alexandria LA with "Gould system" connections to New Orleans, the ferry operation was soon discontinued.

Bill Pollard

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Posted by Overmod on Wednesday, September 26, 2018 10:39 AM

Since this thread has been 'bumped', I have a note (that requires some amplification or confirmation from someone like Johnny Degges who knows the full details).

It was noted early on that the bridge crossings from St. Louis south are at high level.  Something I would note is that, in the Memphis area, when ferry crossings were used prior to 1892, railroads terminated to the northwest of the city, where the approach is low-grade almost right to the river (indeed, right to the river at its right 'stage') whereas the present bridges are at the top of the 'bluffs' considerably south, near the elevation of both Central Station and the site of Union Station, where the high-level crossing involves little elevation change on the east bank.  Several of the ROWs to the ferries still survive, either in truncated operation or as visible traces of track or grading.

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Posted by samfp1943 on Saturday, September 29, 2018 12:30 PM

arkrail

A belated addition to the list of Mississippi River crossings...

Along the Mississippi River segment between Memphis and Vicksburg, one additional river crossing existed.  Between approximately 1885 and 1890, a double track transfer boat operated between Arkansas City AR and Huntington MS.  The steamer Marion is identified in Missouri Pacific-Iron Mountain annual reports of that period as operating between those points and also described as being owned by the Little Rock & Fort Smith (owner of the Little Rock, Mississippi River & Texas), the Iron Mountain, and the Louisville, New Orleans & Texas (predecessor of the later Yazoo & Mississippi Valley.)

This route briefly carried a Railway Post Office across the river (the Little Rock & Leland RPO) and also a Pullman sleeping car line which operated St. Louis to New Orleans via Little Rock, Arkansas City, Huntington, Vicksburg and New Orleans.  Once Jay Gould consolidated his holdings in the area, and completed a line into Alexandria LA with "Gould system" connections to New Orleans, the ferry operation was soon discontinued.

Bill Pollard

      Reaching back, at one time, the original(?) M&NA RR had track from area of Joplin,Mo. to Neosho,Mo. [via KCS trackage rights] then Eastward to Calico Rock,Ar. and Harrison, Ar.. Eventually, to Helena,Ar. [ there was a Miss. River Ferry connection from the Helena area to Friars, Pt. Ms., and connection to the IC RR [both N&S] in area of Friar's Point.

            I think that was,in part, the Pullman and RPO connections, mentioned.

    As it[M&NA] went across Arkansas, it ran to a connection at Seligman, Mo. with the SLSF [via a connection from Hot Springs, Ar.]; also connections with SLSW(CottonBelt)/SP near Brinkley, Ar. and MoPac near Helena(?) Ar.

  The M&NA has a somewhat 'checkered' and 'troubled' history; because of ROW and Construction issues; it had a repoutaion, localy, as "the MAY NEVER ARRIVE" certainly, not a reputation, contributing to a scheduled passenger operation.

 

 

 


 

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Posted by samfp1943 on Saturday, September 29, 2018 12:47 PM

Overmod

Since this thread has been 'bumped', I have a note (that requires some amplification or confirmation from someone like Johnny Degges who knows the full details).

It was noted early on that the bridge crossings from St. Louis south are at high level.  Something I would note is that, in the Memphis area, when ferry crossings were used prior to 1892, railroads terminated to the northwest of the city, where the approach is low-grade almost right to the river (indeed, right to the river at its right 'stage') whereas the present bridges are at the top of the 'bluffs' considerably south, near the elevation of both Central Station and the site of Union Station, where the high-level crossing involves little elevation change on the east bank.  Several of the ROWs to the ferries still survive, either in truncated operation or as visible traces of track or grading.

 

 

         The 'original' postings By Dale, Nanaimo73 was quite the work, and a real source for documentation.  I had printed off the original thread, and have it for a 'reference'. I have held my breath that it would not get lost as the Forum goes through some of the 'updates'.... It is certainly, nice to see it "Bumped' back to a relevent area.  

  Just for a little note, and to add to the aspects of some of the History of the Mississippi River, in its middle course.   There is a still operational ferry, at the area of St. Genevieve, Mo and Modoc, Il.  [auto/truck traffic]

  And also, in the area of Hickman, Tn to Dorena, Mo [auto/truck traffic]

 The site of the M&IMRR Ferry Crossing, and later, Rock Island Crossing between the area of Memphis, Tn. and West Memphis. Ar.(?) is still visible under the east abutments of the Mem/Ark Bridge[Brdg.50], Harahan Brdg[Brdg.51] And in part is used by a local River Tug Boat replensihment operator. and the next is the Frisco Br., orig. was KCFS&M[Brdg52]now BNSF.   Currently, there is the latest Bridge crossing which is it I-40 Interstate crossing, located about 2 mi.(?) north of the other bridges.

 

 

 

 


 

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Posted by arkrail on Saturday, September 29, 2018 7:02 PM

samfp1943
Reaching back, at one time, the original(?) M&NA RR had track from area of Joplin,Mo. to Neosho,Mo. [via KCS trackage rights] then Eastward to Calico Rock,Ar. and Harrison, Ar.. Eventually, to Helena,Ar. [ there was a Miss. River Ferry connection from the Helena area to Friars, Pt. Ms., and connection to the IC RR [both N&S] in area of Friar's Point. I think that was,in part, the Pullman and RPO connections, mentioned.

The Pullman and RPO connections that I discussed had nothing to do with the considerably later river crossing which IC predecessors established between Trotters Point MS and Helena AR.  The Pullman and RPO operated via a rail ferry which briefly operated between Arkansas City AR and Huntington MS - Huntington being on a short LNO&T branch northwest from Leland MS.  This ferry crossing was long abandoned before the M&NA ever arrived in Helena.  I am not sure about possible Pullman service into Helena on the Y&MV/IC ferry, although there was at one time parlor car service between Helena and Memphis over the Y&MV.  I am not aware of any RPO service which operated into Helena over the IC ferry.

Bill Pollard

(PS - the M&NA didn't pass through Calico Rock, that was the Missouri Pacific's White River Division. The M&NA passed through St. Joe, Leslie and Marshall, about 40 miles west southwest of Calico Rock.)

 

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Posted by Overmod on Sunday, September 30, 2018 9:01 PM

samfp1943
The site of the M&IMRR Ferry Crossing, and later, Rock Island Crossing between the area of Memphis, Tn. and West Memphis. Ar.(?) is still visible under the east abutments of the Mem/Ark Bridge[Brdg.50], Harahan Brdg[Brdg.51] And in part is used by a local River Tug Boat replenishment operator...

There are not 'two' bridges with those names at this site; there is only the Harahan Bridge (now enhanced with the Big River Crossing walkway on the north side) and it is highly unlikely that there is anything except ruins at the east abutment of that bridge as the current is very fast and shifting at that location. 

Due north is the Hernando DeSoto highway bridge, which as noted carries the I-40 part of the I40/55 crossing in the Memphis area.  (See below for the 'other')  Is this the bridge that had the tugboat provisioning nearby (perhaps technically in the Wolf River 'mouth' part east of Mud Island?)

and the next is the Frisco Br., orig. was KCFS&M[Brdg52]now BNSF.

Almost immediately south of the Harahan bridge is the old Frisco bridge, built 1892, which is currently in the throes of a tremendous rebuilding (the long approach up to the river from the west being rebuilt with THREE-track sized piers, room each side of the current structure and pier line, so there will be little problem enhancing this crossing's capacity in future).  It will be sad to see the existing structure taken down, but the promise of multiple tracks is great especially with the 'crossing' at Central Station rebuilt from 5mph with stop signs as it was years ago.

Not far south of the Frisco bridge is a cramped steel cantilever bridge from the late '40s, which is the whole crossing provided for Interstate 55 traffic to the south (and connection to the 240 loop, many distribution-center locations, and presumably much of the I-69 south feeder when that route is built out, as the diversion around through Millington and then 385 is likely to be much longer for vehicles going south).  Back in the Clinton years there were all sorts of discussion what the routing for I-69 would be, with Shreveport(!) and Springhill (!!!) being in contention at one point in the early-middle Nineties.  But there is little hope at this point of a Mississippi crossing to 'relieve' the decidedly unpleasant situation with the old bridge, particularly as TNDOT does incompetent 'maintenance' on it presumably with their usual inflated schedule and slipshod engineering.  It is wise to be a passenger if watching trains from this crossing in either direction...

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Posted by chicagorails on Thursday, September 5, 2019 8:48 AM
east dubuque ill is a great place with a nice beach on miss river where i have camped overnite 20 years ago and dub iowa across river is nice area
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Posted by chicagorails on Sunday, September 8, 2019 7:56 AM

Nelson il cnw crosses rock river is s great time  but don't go on bridge!many people killed over many years on and off bridge

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Posted by chicagorails on Tuesday, September 10, 2019 5:12 AM

Like to take boat and anchor 500 feet from bridge and camp out overnight on boat. Cool

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Posted by chicagorails on Wednesday, September 25, 2019 4:26 AM

Lovetofishonboatwhilewatchingtrains.

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