This bridge is a large six span through truss bridge. Northwestern Ohio has very few large historic bridges because aside from the Maumee River which this bridge crosses, there are very few rivers that are of significant size. As such, this bridge is locally significant as a significant multi-span truss bridge. The bridge appears to retain good structural and historic integrity.
A Bit of Advice When Trying To Preserve A Historic Bridge
This bridge is today owned by the Toledo and Lake Erie and Western Railway and Museum.
When HistoricBridges.org revisited this bridge in 2021, we were greeted at the southern portal of this bridge with the most unwelcoming situation ever encountered with a bridge owned by a historical society or museum or otgher preservation-oriented group. The entire area around the south portal was roped off at a significant distance from the portal. This area also had numerous threatening signs saying that photography of any kind was prohibited. The icing on the cake was some piece of rail equipment that was left on the bridge, which meant if anyone did try to photograph the bridge legally from adjacent public property the photos looked like garbage. In other words, this bridge was more inhospitable to photography than busy, active railroad bridges owned by major railroad companies. Ironically, the museum that owns this bridge is actually trying to raise funds to preserve this bridge and open it for use by tourist trains. While concerns of liability are understandable, if you are trying to raise interest in a historic bridge you really need to make every effort to make it easy for visitors to view and photograph the bridge, and to to truly appreciate the bridge's beauty and history, if you want to inspire people to actually open their wallets. This museum has failed terribly at that.
HistoricBridges.org offers the following advice to encourage greater quantity and quality of donations to restore this bridge:
1. Allow anyone to walk up to the portal of the bridge and take photos. Limit any roping of the bridge to directly under the portal. Remove all equipment from the bridge deck so that the view is unobstructed.
2. Expand the scope of work in the proposed project to include conversion of the deck to a hybrid design allowing for both pedestrian and train use. When tourist trains are not running, open the bridge to pedestrian use. This will vastly expand the pool of donations beyond railfans to also include anyone who enjoys history, walking, etc.
This bridge is tagged with the following special condition(s): Unorganized Photos
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