This bridge is noted for its combination of span and design types: a riveted pony truss and a pinned through truss. The through truss was built in 1898 by Rochester Bridge Company of Rochester, Indiana and the pony truss span was a replacement structure dating to 1919 and built by the Vincennes Bridge Company of Vincennes, Indiana.
Information and Findings From DHPA Historic Bridge Survey
Bridge History and Significance
By 1876, the road which angled northwest from Gosport to Cloverdale in Putnam County was a well-used one. It serviced at least four churches and two schools, including the Mill Grove church and school house just north of the Mill Creek crossing. After a visit to the crossing in March 1898, the Board of Commissioners decided to built a "steel highway bridge" here. It approved specifications for a 125-ft. (extreme) span with a 14-ft clear roadway, and set a letting for 2 May. Sixteen firms submitted proposals. At $2,450 for "a steel and wrought iron bridge," the Rochester Bridge Company of Rochester, Indiana, was "the lowest responsible bidder" and secured the contract. Whether Mill Creek was spanned on the Gosport-Cloverdale road before the 1898 through-trusses were erected there remains unknown. The builder of the stone abutments for the steel and wrought iron span also remains unknown. A pony-truss span was added to the Mill Grove Bridge, probably in 1919 by the Vincennes Bridge Company. To accommodate the additional span, the commissioners had a concrete abutment built and likely adjusted and encased the original northern stone abutment as a pier.
Through-truss span (1898)
Pony-truss span (c.1919)
Statement of Significance
Bridge Considered Historic By Survey: Yes (Select)
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