Mystery Bridge Nr. 76: Iron Suspension Bridge Near A Church In Arkansas

Photos taken by Jeremy Lance
Photos taken by Jeremy Lance

The 76th mystery bridge in the series takes us two states down to the state of Arkansas. This derelict suspension bridge was recently discovered by Jeremy Lance, and some information is needed for this structure. The bridge spans Reed Creek on the northeast side of a low water crossing just south of township road 2400 in Madison County. It is located a mile southeast of Jones Community Church and seven miles east of the nearest town of Huntsville. A map enclosed shows you the exact location.  What is already known about this bridge is the fact that it used to be a pedestrian bridge, and given its proximity to the church, it was used very often during its heyday, which appears to be at least 70 years ago. The bridge is unique because the towers have large eyebars on top, which carried the cables that supported the decking. The towers themselves are triangular with an equilateral angle of 75°. The cables appear to be wired. And the material: While the foundations are stone-based, the rest appear to have been built using iron, thus taking the date of construction of between 1870 and 1890, for steel supplanted iron as the material of choice from the latter date on.

This takes us to the following questions:

  1. When was the bridge built? When was it abandoned? It is unlikely that despite having a low-water crossing in place for a couple years that the suspension bridge was replaced at that time. The guesses here is 30 years ago,the bridge was abandoned and nature has taken over ever since.
  2. Who designed and constructed the bridge?  This one no one has an idea about…..
  3. Why build a bridge at this location when the church is a mile away? Was there a village nearby or another place of congregation?
  4. What did the original bridge which was replaced with the low-water crossing look like? 

Any information that is useful? Comment in this article or in the Bridgehunter’s Chronicles’ facebook page. Any information you have will be useful in determining its history. With this discovery, there will surely be some people ready to step forward. So let’s put this story together, shall we?

Stone piers with triangular towers
Stone piers with triangular towers

 

Close-up of the eyebar portion of the towers and the wired cables
Close-up of the eyebar portion of the towers and the wired cables

 

 

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