TexasEscapes.com Texas Escapes Online Magazine: Travel and History
Columns: History, Humor, Topical and Opinion
Over 1600 Texas Towns & Ghost Towns
NEW : : TEXAS TOWNS : : GHOST TOWNS : : FEATURES : : COLUMNS : : ARCHITECTURE : : IMAGES : : SITE MAP
HOME
SEARCH SITE
ARCHIVES
RESERVATIONS
Texas Hotels
Hotels
Cars
Air
Cruises
 
  Texas : Architecture : Bridges :

Trinity County Bridges (Trinity County Line):

The Trinity River Railroad Swing Bridge
&
The Old Trinity River Highway Span

by John Troesser
Trinity River railroad bridge and highway bridge, Trinity County, Texas
Aerial view of the two bridges - Highway 19 bridge under construction

Photo courtesy Trinity County Historical Society

The Trinity River Railroad Swing Bridge -

Built by the Wisconson Bridge and Iron Co., North Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Trinity river railroad swing  bridge close up, Trinity County, Texas


Another view of the Trinity River Railraod swing bridge

Photo by John Troesser, May 2004
Trinity river railroad swing  bridge, Trinity County, Texas
Trinity River Railroad Swing Bridge

Photo by John Troesser, May 2004
The bridge was originally constructed to allow steamboat and barge traffic to pass, but it's been some time since a barge has passed and even longer since steamboats have been seen on the Trinity.

The first railroad bridge had been constructed in the early 1870s when the Houston and Great Northern railroad came through the area.

The bridge featured here was constructed by the International and Great Northern Railway and was actually built in Wisconson and shipped to Texas where it was erected on site in 1916. The length of the bridge is 294 feet and when the trestles and approaches are included, the length reaches nearly 3,000 feet. The swing mechanism revolves around a massive pin embedded in cement and (in theory) it can be turned manually.

In its long history, the bridge has only been "swung" open on two occassions. Once being a flood in the mid 20s when it was opened to prevent driftwood and sawyers from piling up against it.
Trinity river railroad swing  bridge swung open
A rare photo of the railroad swing bridge open

Photo courtesy Trinity County Historical Society
Texas has two other swing bridges. One across the Brazos River in Brazoria County and one over the Rio Grande connecting Brownsville with Matamoros, Tamaulipas, Mexico.

Detailed information about the railroad bridge can be found in T. Lindsay Baker's Building the Lone Star, Texas A & M Press, 1986

The Old Trinity River Highway Span - next page

March 1, 2005
John Troesser
More Texas Bridges
More Texas | Online Magazine | Architecture | Texas Towns |
Bridges: The Spans of North America
Building the Lone Star: An Illustrated Guide to Historic Sites
 
TEXAS TOWN LIST | TEXAS GHOST TOWNS | TEXAS COUNTIES
Texas Hill Country | East Texas | Central Texas North | Central Texas South |
West Texas | Texas Panhandle | South Texas | Texas Gulf Coast
TRIPS | STATES PARKS | RIVERS | LAKES | DRIVES | MAPS

TEXAS FEATURES
Ghosts | People | Historic Trees | Cemeteries | Small Town Sagas | WWII |
History | Black History | Rooms with a Past | Music | Animals | Books | MEXICO
COLUMNS : History, Humor, Topical and Opinion

TEXAS ARCHITECTURE | IMAGES
Courthouses | Jails | Churches | Gas Stations | Schoolhouses | Bridges | Theaters |
Monuments/Statues | Depots | Water Towers | Post Offices | Grain Elevators |
Lodges | Museums | Stores | Banks | Gargoyles | Corner Stones | Pitted Dates |
Drive-by Architecture | Old Neon | Murals | Signs | Ghost Signs | Then and Now
Vintage Photos

TRAVEL RESERVATIONS | USA

Privacy Statement | Disclaimer | Recommend Us
Contributors | Staff | Contact TE
TEXAS ESCAPES ONLINE MAGAZINE
Website Content Copyright 1998-2007. Texas Escapes - Blueprints For Travel, LLC. All Rights Reserved
This page last modified: November 4, 2006