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21 Mile Road Bridge

21 Mile Road Bridge

Primary Photographer(s): Nathan Holth

Bridge Documented: 2006 and November 8, 2012

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and Videos
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Key Facts

Facility Carried / Feature Intersected
21 Mile Road Over Rice Creek
Rural: Calhoun County, Michigan: United States
Construction Date and Builder / Engineer
1885 By Builder/Contractor: Massillon Bridge Company of Massillon, Ohio

Technical Facts

Rehabilitation Date
Not Available or Not Applicable
Main Span Length
60 Feet (18.2 Meters)
Structure Length
60 Feet (18.2 Meters)
Roadway Width
13 Feet (3.96 Meters)
1 Main Span(s)
NBI Number

Historic Significance Rating (HSR)
View Information About HSR Ratings

Bridge Documentation

This bridge no longer exists!

Bridge Status: Demolished and replaced in 2019.

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

This bridge was built in 1885, making it a very old example of a half-hip pin connected Pratt pony truss in Michigan. Most Pratt pony trusses in Michigan are actually closed to traffic, but this one remains open with a decent 12 ton weight limit. An attractive blue paint is present on this bridge, but there is rust. This bridge was built by the Massillon Bridge company, and their distinctively-shaped plaque does not remain on the bridge, but its outline can be easily seen where it once was. This five panel bridge has a wooden deck and v-lacing on vertical members. The bridge has two notable alterations. First, the lattice railings do not remain, and plain steel railings have been added. Also, outriggers were added, and the main i-beams had extra steel added to support these buttresses. These outriggers probably helped this bridge continue to carry modern traffic, however.

In November 2012, an effort to put a new coat of paint on the bridge appeared to be underway. While it does not appear to be a comprehensive repainting, where rust would be blasted off and new paint applied to every exposed surface of the bridge, any effort to protect the bridge is certainly better than nothing. However, perhaps the most beneficial thing that was also done during this effort was that the dirt was dug out around the bearings. Dirt buildup around bearings leads to moisture buildup which in turn leads to deterioration. Removing this dirt will extend the life of the bridge.

Information and Findings From Michigan Historic Bridge Inventory

Narrative Description

This bridge is an early Pratt pony truss, built by the Massillon Bridge Company of Massillon, Ohio, a prolific metal truss bridge company in terms of bridges constructed in Michigan and the Midwest.


Photo Galleries and Videos: 21 Mile Road Bridge

View Photo Gallery
2012 Bridge Photo-Documentation
Original / Full Size Photos
A collection of overview and detail photos, taken 2012. This gallery offers photos in the highest available resolution and file size in a touch-friendly popup viewer. Alternatively, Browse Without Using Viewer
View Photo Gallery
2012 Bridge Photo-Documentation
Mobile Optimized Photos
A collection of overview and detail photos, taken 2012 This gallery features data-friendly, fast-loading photos in a touch-friendly popup viewer. Alternatively, Browse Without Using Viewer
View Photo Gallery
Additional, Earlier Bridge Photo-Documentation
A collection of overview and detail photos. This photo gallery contains a combination of Original Size photos and Mobile Optimized photos in a touch-friendly popup viewer. Alternatively, Browse Without Using Viewer
View Video
Northbound Crossing
Full Motion Video
Streaming video of the bridge. Also includes a higher quality downloadable video for greater clarity or offline viewing.


Maps and Links: 21 Mile Road Bridge

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

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