Abandoned Little Sioux River Bridge #3

Abandoned Pratt Through Truss Bridge over Little Sioux River
North of Correctionville, Woodbury County, Iowa

Click the Photo Above to See All Photos of This Bridge!
Name Abandoned Little Sioux River Bridge #3
Built By Cherokee & Dakota Railroad
Contractor Union Bridge Company of Buffalo, New York
Currently Owned By Woodbury County
Length 605 Feet Total (Formerly), 314 Feet Total (Current), 150 Foot Main Span
Width 1 Track
Height Above Ground 15 Feet (Estimated)
Superstructure Type Pratt Through Truss and Trestle
Substructure Type Stone and Timber Pile
Date Built 1887
Traffic Count 0 Trains/Day (Bridge is Abandoned)
Current Status Abandoned
IC Bridge Number T18.5
Significance Moderate Significance
Documentation Date December 2016
In 1888, the Cherokee & Dakota built a 59 mile route between Cherokee and Onawa. This route connected to other routes being constructed in the area.
The same year, the C&D became a part of the Dubuque & Sioux City Railroad, who already operated a mainline between the namesake cities.
The Illinois Central leased the D&SC, and it fully merged in 1946.
As a branch line, this route gradually became excess for the Illinois Central, which had reorganized as Illinois Central Gulf in 1972.
The entire line was abandoned between 1978 and 1980. Today, most structures on the line remain but the tracks are long gone.

Located north of Correctionville, this large through truss bridge crosses the Little Sioux River.
Built in 1887 during the initial construction of this route, the bridge features a single pin connected 8-panel Pratt Through Truss structure, set onto stone piers. The bridge also is approached by trestle spans on both sides, although the north approaches have been removed. The truss also features a unique double jointing on the lower connections at the outermost vertical members.
This type of bridge is a standardized design on the Illinois Central routes. Seen throughout Illinois, Iowa and Wisconsin, these bridges were simple and durable. Many continue to exist today.
Fortunately for this structure, it remains in possession of Woodbury County as of 2019. While it is unlikely it would ever see trail usage at this location, it would make a good candidate to move and restore for a pedestrian bridge at another location. Unfortunately, this was not done when the trail bridge was rebuilt.
Overall, the truss appears to be in good condition, although most of the deck is missing. The approaches are in poor condition, with significant deterioration. It is hoped that this bridge can be preserved at another location.

The author has ranked this bridge as being moderately significant, due to the truss design. It is a good example of a truss left standing after the removal of the railroad.
The photo above is an overview.



Source Type


Build Date 1973 Illinois Central Track Profile
Contractor Missing Union Bridge Company plaque
Railroad Line History Source ICC Valuation Information, Compiled by Richard S. Steele

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