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Gospel Street Bridge

Orange County Bridge 200

Gospel Street Bridge

Primary Photographer(s): Rod Detty

Bridge Documented: July 1, 2006

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Key Facts

Facility Carried / Feature Intersected
Gospel Street Over Lick Creek
Location
Paoli: Orange County, Indiana: United States
Construction Date and Builder / Engineer
1880 By Builder/Contractor: Cleveland Bridge and Iron Company of Cleveland, Ohio

Technical Facts

Rehabilitation Date
Not Available or Not Applicable
Main Span Length
90.2 Feet (27.49 Meters)
Structure Length
93 Feet (28.35 Meters)
Roadway Width
15.4 Feet (4.69 Meters)
Spans
1 Main Span(s)
NBI Number
5900102

Historic Significance Rating (HSR)

Bridge Documentation

View Archived National Bridge Inventory Report - Has Additional Details and Evaluation

This eight panel structure is an old structure and it features highly decorative portal knee bracing, as well as a decorative builder plaque. It features latticed vertical members that are a bit different looking than the standard truss bridge. Earlier pin-connected truss bridges such as this 1880 structure often featured uncommon design for some parts of the bridge. This was because designs had not yet become standardized, and some experimentation was still ongoing. The Gospel Street Bridge is important as a beautiful, and old metal truss bridge that retains good historic integrity.

Researching Cleveland bridge companies is difficult because between different companies with similar names, and also some companies changing their names, the various companies can become difficult to keep straight. This bridge was built by the company that had "And Iron" in its name. There were others, for example, the Cleveland Bridge Company is different than the Cleveland Bridge and Iron Company. In any case, this bridge is a rare surviving example of its builder.

The Gospel Street Bridge is located next to a separate pedestrian bridge that is itself old and worthy of attention. It appears to be a late bowstring truss bridge, perhaps built in the 1930s. It features riveted connections.

Information and Findings From DHPA Historic Bridge Survey

Statement of Significance

Hobson and Associates correctly identify this bridge as "a historic landmark", "a fine example of the first class construction and craftmanship of the last century with many features not common to bridge construction of the era." One of two surviving Pratts built by this noteworthy Ohio firm, the structure retains its original members including unique floor beams. Many of the bridge's decorative features are still intact; e.g., heavy and latticed struts and bracing, latticed portals and guardrails, and cast iron portal bracing.

Architectural Description

The Cleveland Bridge and Iron Company of Cleveland, Ohio, fabricated this single-span, pin-connected Pratt through truss which is seated upon cut stone abutments and wingwalls. Intermediate verticals of laced channels subdivide the 93'6" truss into most of its eight panels. The endpost verticals are crafted from latticed Ts. Eyebars provide the diagonals: pairs stretch toward center span from the top panel point to the bottom of all except the endpost panels; cylindrical eyebars with turnbuckles counter the others in the four most central panels. Double U-bolted to the lower pins, special girder floor beams carry the timber deck with its 14'6" roadway and 13'6" of vertical clearance. Instead of a solid plate at the heart of the bow-shaped girders, angles and rectangular strips form a central web.

ALTERATIONS: Some of the bridge's original decorative features are no longer intact; e. g., heavy and latticed struts and bracing, latticed portals and guardrails, and cast iron portal bracing.

Bridge Considered Historic By Survey: Yes

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