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Donaldson Bridge

Donaldson Bridge

Primary Photographer(s): Nathan Holth

Bridge Documented: July 4, 2006

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Key Facts

Facility Carried / Feature Intersected
Creek Road (TR-500, Kramer Road) Over Raccoon Creek
Rural: Washington County, Pennsylvania: United States
Construction Date and Builder / Engineer
1901 By Builder/Contractor: Nelson and Buchanan of Chambersburg, Pennsylvania

Technical Facts

Rehabilitation Date
Not Available or Not Applicable
Main Span Length
83 Feet (25.3 Meters)
Structure Length
83 Feet (25.3 Meters)
Roadway Width
14 Feet (4.27 Meters)
1 Main Span(s)
NBI Number

Historic Significance Rating (HSR)
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Bridge Documentation

This bridge no longer exists!

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

This historic bridge was demolished and replaced in 2007!

This bridge was built by Nelson and Buchanan, who built a number of other bridges in Washington County. It is a five panel Pratt pony truss with riveted connections. There is a slight skew to the structure. The bridge retains original railings, which are an unusual v-laced style railing that seems to show up on these Nelson and Buchanan bridges. The bridge sits on concrete abutments. There is v-lacing on the vertical members as well. Like most of the Washington County truss bridges documented by HistoricBridges.org in 2006, this bridge is open to traffic, and is in a condition that indicated it was definitely time to rehabilitate before it plunged into a severe state of deterioration, a state it had not quite reached yet.

Pennsylvania's solution was to waste money and destroy heritage by demolishing and replacing this bridge rather than rehabilitating it.

The inventory listing mistakenly describes the abutments as concrete, when they are in fact stone with cement patching on one. Also, their assessment that this bridge is not historic is absurdly outdated; no where near 25 truss bridges remain today.

Information and Findings From Pennsylvania's Historic Bridge Inventory

Discussion of Bridge

The skewed, single-span, 83'-long and 14' wide, riveted Pratt pony truss bridge is supported on concrete abutments. It was fabricated in 1901 by Nelson & Buchanan, who built many of the same design bridges in the county. It is an example of the standardizations of metal truss bridges that occurred by the late 19th century. The field connections are both bolts and rivets. Riveted field connections in Pennsylvania date to at least the late 19th century. Neither the bridge nor its setting are historically or technologically significant. There are over 25 metal truss bridges from 1887 through 1935 in Washington County.

Discussion of Surrounding Area

The bridge carries a single-lane road over a stream in a sparsely developed, wooded setting.

Bridge Considered Historic By Survey: No


Photo Galleries and Videos: Donaldson Bridge

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Maps and Links: Donaldson Bridge

This historic bridge has been demolished. This map is shown for reference purposes only.

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