Pacific Short Line Bridge Historical Marker, Sioux City, IA
Posted by: Groundspeak Regular Member wildernessmama
N 42° 29.357 W 096° 24.778
14T E 712609 N 4707346
Quick Description: This historical marker is found in Chris Larsen Park near the Missouri River where the former bridge once stood.
Location: Iowa, United States
Date Posted: 3/16/2011 6:34:11 AM
Waymark Code: WMAZHN
Published By: Groundspeak Premium Member MNSearchers
Views: 0

Long Description:
The first bridge across the Missouri River for foot, horse and light rail traffic and later automobiles was nicknamed the Combination Bridge because it carried various forms of traffic. It was built in 1896 and destroyed in 1981. One of the remaining pillars of the bridge can be seen on Larsen Park Drive under the current Veteran’s Memorial Bridge. The marker reads:

Pacific Short Line Bridge. Started 1890, Finished 1896. Designer J.A.L. Waddell. Built by Phoenix Bridge Company—Fabricator and Erector Sooysmith & Company—Foundations and Piers.

The stone of this monument came from the piers of the previous bridge erected at this spot. The Pacific Short Line had been a speculative railroad venture by Sioux City businessmen who sought new markets to the west. The railroad company failed in 1893, but Sioux City investors saw the bridge to completion. The bridge opened new business markets and tied northeastern Nebraska to Sioux City. The structure was known locally as the Combination Bridge because it originally carried trains and streetcars down the center and horsedrawn carts and pedestrians on the outside. It consisted of two 500 foot Pennsylvania fixed spans and two 470 foot Pratt rim bearing swing spans with timber trestle approaches. The swing spans were needed to allow passage of steamboats and were first opened by hand and later by electrical power. The Iowa swing span was removed in 1959. Because the Pacific Short Line Bridge was eligible for the National Register of Historic Places, a written history and photographs of the bridge were prepared in 1980 for the Historic American Engineering Record of the Library of Congress, Washington, D.C. The bridge was demolished in March 1981 when a modern replacement structure was completed.
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