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Clifton Bridge

Clifton Bridge

Primary Photographer(s): Nathan Holth

Bridge Documented: August 2, 2019

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Key Facts

Facility Carried / Feature Intersected
CR-3112 (Abandoned Alignment) Over North Bosque River
Clifton: Bosque County, Texas: United States
Structure Type
Metal 10 Panel Pin-Connected Whipple Through T-Beam, Fixed and Approach Spans: Metal 4 Panel Rivet-Connected Warren Pony Truss, Fixed
Construction Date and Builder / Engineer
1884 By Builder/Contractor: Wrought Iron Bridge Company of Canton, Ohio

Technical Facts

Rehabilitation Date
Not Available or Not Applicable
Main Span Length
148 Feet (45.1 Meters)
Structure Length
371 Feet (113.1 Meters)
Roadway Width
17 Feet (5.18 Meters)
1 Main Span(s) and 2 Approach Span(s)
NBI Number

Historic Significance Rating (HSR)
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Bridge Documentation

This bridge is highly significant as one of the few surviving Whipple truss bridges in Texas, and it also has some newer, but still historic, pony truss approach spans. The Whipple truss dates to 1884. In 1912, the eastern (northern) original approach span of unknown design was replaced with a Texas standard riveted Warren pony truss. At this time, the Whipple truss was also widened to match the 17 foot roadway of the new approach span. Evidence that the Whipple truss span is clear: riveted additions that do not match the rest of the portal bracing can be seen in the center of the portal bracing. The holes which originally would have held the bolts for the Wrought Iron bridge company's standard ornamental cresting pieces are now spaced too far apart (this is likely what resulted in the loss of these ornamental elements too).This alteration does not diminish the significance of the bridge as a rare example of a Whipple truss bridge. The truss lines themselves are unaltered and retain good historic integrity. In 1918 the west (southern) approach span was replaced with a riveted Warren pony truss span as well. As of 2019, this bridge has been bypassed by a new bridge and abandoned. The deck was removed and the approaching roadway was also removed. As such, the nobody can walk on the bridge anymore. While this is a better outcome than demolishing the bridge, it is unfortunate that the bridge cannot even be walked on anymore, and given the condition of other similarly bypassed bridges in Texas, it is assumed that the bridge will not be maintained and could be at risk for collapse if problems develop in the years and decades to come.

View Historic Bridge Inventory Sheet For This Bridge

Information and Findings From Texas Historical Commission

Historical Marker

Built in 1884 by the Wrought Iron Bridge Company of Canton, Ohio, at a cost of $6,465, this bridge spans 150 feet across the North Bosque River. This type of bridge, called a Whipple truss, was named for its designer. One of the few remaining Whipple truss bridges in the state, it opened up travel routes from the south and west to the north and east. Withstanding many floods, the bridge provided an important transportation connection for Bosque County residents from 1884 to 1941 when traffic was routed west of the Bosque River to the newly constructed Highway 6. Recorded Texas Historic Landmark - 1996

Bridge Considered Historic By Survey: Yes


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