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Hays Bridge

Hancock County Bridge 17

Hays Bridge

Primary Photographer(s): Nathan Holth

Bridge Documented: February 19, 2017

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Key Facts

Facility Carried / Feature Intersected
CR-675 East Over Sugar Creek
Rural: Hancock County, Indiana: United States
Construction Date and Builder / Engineer
1887 By Builder/Contractor: Columbia Bridge Works of Dayton, Ohio and Engineer/Design: Winfield Fries

Technical Facts

Rehabilitation Date
Main Span Length
90 Feet (27.4 Meters)
Structure Length
92 Feet (28 Meters)
Roadway Width
13.8 Feet (4.21 Meters)
1 Main Span(s)
NBI Number

Historic Significance Rating (HSR)
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Bridge Documentation

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

This bridge is a later example of a bridge built by the Columbia Bridge Works, and lacks the unusual details found on earlier bridges built by the company.

Despite this fact, even this bridge still continues the tradition of Columbia Bridge Works using unusual details. The use of a tight or dense lattice on the built-up verticals is unusual. Also the portal bracing is positioned in an unusual manner that makes the end posts and top chord look like they are sticking out. In the case of this bridge however, the unusual design details are the result of the county engineer who designed the bridge. This bridge was not designed by the bridge company as was common at the time. Instead, the county engineer designed the bridge, an early example of the more common way in which bridges would be designed and built in the 20th Century.

This bridge has a local myth of being haunted by a crying baby and/or mother and may be called the Baby Doll Bridge by locals for this reason.

Information and Findings From DHPA Historic Bridge Survey

Statement of Significance

This single-span, pin-connected Pratt through truss is seated upon cut stone abutments and wingwalls. Intermediate verticals of latticed channels subdivide the 92' truss into most of its six panels. 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 two most central panels. U-bolted to the lower pins, I floor-beams carry the timber deck with its 14'1" roadway and 16'3" of vertical clearance. The sway bracing is substantial. This Pratt truss retains its original members, including decoratively latticed portals, sway bracing, and guardrails.

Other Information

References: Hancock County Engineering Dept. Structure Inventory and Appraisal Sheets (Greenfield, 1974). Indiana Historic Sites & Structures Inventory. Hancock County: Interim Report (Indianapolis, 1983). SIECO, Inc. Bridge Reinspection Report: Hancock County (Columbus, 1979).

Bridge Considered Historic By Survey: Yes


Photo Galleries and Videos: Hays Bridge

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