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Old IN-158 Bridge

Lawrence County Bridge 100

Old IN-158 Bridge

Primary Photographer(s): Nathan Holth and Rick McOmber

Bridge Documented: May 10, 2010

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Key Facts

Facility Carried / Feature Intersected
Old IN-158 Over Salt Creek
Rural: Lawrence County, Indiana: United States
Construction Date and Builder / Engineer
1876 By Builder/Contractor: Smith Bridge Company of Toledo, Ohio

Technical Facts

Rehabilitation Date
Main Span Length
95 Feet (28.96 Meters)
Structure Length
97.3 Feet (29.66 Meters)
Roadway Width
14.8 Feet (4.51 Meters)
1 Main Span(s)
NBI Number

Historic Significance Rating (HSR)

Bridge Documentation

This bridge no longer exists!

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

This bridge has a plaque that identifies it as a bridge built by the Smith Bridge Company. The lightweight and nonstandard details of this bridge demonstrate its extremely early construction date, including lightweight vertical members, and extremely lightweight portal bracing with corrugated or "ribbon lacing." The details of this bridge are for the most part unlike those the Smith Bridge Company used in later years, further example of its early construction. The only details that would be seen in later bridges is the used of a rolled beam for the sway bracing and the unusual cast iron shoes and bearings for the bridge. This bridge has been abandoned, but it retains remarkable historic integrity, especially considering the bridge's age. This bridge may be the oldest remaining metal bridge built by the noteworthy Smith Bridge Company in the country. If so, the bridge is nationally significant, given that Smith Bridge Company's influence stretched over a significant number of states. This bridge should be fully restored and provided with a long-term preservation commitment.

Information and Findings From DHPA Historic Bridge Survey

Statement of Significance

The prolific Ohio firm followed an early standard pattern with these trusses. The lightness of members, the need to reinforce rolled I beams, the use of loop-welded eyebars, and the extensive countering are all examples of early form. The undecorated structure retains its original members.

Architectural Description

The Smith Bridge Company of Toledo, Ohio, fabricated this pin-connected Pratt through span which is seated upon cut stone abutments and wingwalls. Intermediate verticals of reinforced I beams subdivide the 97'4" trusses into most of their eight panels. A pair of loop-welded and cylindrical eyebars serves as the diagonal sets, and single, cylindrical rods with turnbuckles counter the diagonals in the four most central panels. U-bolted to the lower pins, I floor beams carry the asphalt-over-timber deck with its 14'9" roadway and 15'6" of vertical clearance.

Bridge Considered Historic By Survey: Yes


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