CB&Q Republican River Bridge

Pratt Through Truss Bridge over Republican River
Concordia, Cloud County, Kansas

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Name CB&Q Republican River Bridge
Built By Chicago, Burlington & Quincy Railroad
Contractor Lassig Bridge & Iron Works of Chicago
Currently Owned By Private Owner
Length 396 Feet Total, 132 Foot Spans
Width 1 Track
Height Above Ground 20 Feet (Estimated)
Superstructure Type Pratt Through Truss
Substructure Type Concrete
Date Built 1894, Relocated here 1908
Traffic Count 0 Trains/Day (Bridge is Abandoned)
Current Status Abandoned
CBQ Bridge Number 66.66
Significance Regional Significance
Documentation Date January 2020
In 1884, the Chicago, Iowa & Kansas Railroad built a 71 mile line between Odell, Nebraska and Concordia, Kansas. Changing the name to the Chicago, Nebraska & Kansas Railroad the same year, the new line served as one of many branch lines throughout the Plains States.
The CN&K was funded by the Chicago, Burlington & Quincy Railroad subsidiary Burlington & Missouri River Railroad. The railroad officially merged into the CB&Q in 1908, despite being a subsidiary for the entire existance.
In Odell, the line connected to an existing route that skirted along the southern border of Nebraska. Under the CB&Q, little change was made to the route.
By 1970, the CB&Q had merged with Northern Pacific and Great Northern to form Burlington Northern. BN abandoned the entire route in 1982.
Today, some remnants of the grade and some bridges can be found, including a large bridge over the Republican River near Concordia.

Located a couple miles east of Concordia, this large truss bridge sits abandoned a short distance upstream from the nationally significant Republican River Pegram Truss Bridge, along 190th Street.
Plaques on all three spans of this bridge indicate that it was built in 1894, by the prolific Lassig Bridge & Iron Works. The bridge consists of three identical spans, each built with pinned connections, 6 panels and 132 feet in length. Much of the trusses have an appearance standard to the CB&Q bridges constructed around this time. These trusses also feature heavily constructed top chords, large floorbeams and stringers and laced vertical members.
While all spans seem to be identical, some slight differences between the outer spans and inner span can be seen, particularly with how thin the end floor beams on the outer spans are, compared to the middle span. This may be related to a strengthening sometime in the Burlington Northern days. In addition, all three spans contain a double pinned connection on the end panels, sometimes seen on railroad bridges built in the 1880s and early 1890s.
The bridge is set onto concrete substructures. These substructures were built in 1908, when the bridge was relocated here.
Oftentimes railroads relocated metal spans from one location to another when situations called for it, and it appears that these spans were also moved from an unknown location.
Locally, this bridge has also been called the "UP Crossing Bridge", a likely confusion with the Union Pacific Pegram Truss downstream. It appears that the land to the west of the bridge is privately owned, and the bridge likely is as well. However, it is clear that this is a place where people hang out, as evidenced by the trails, trash and parking lot on the east side.
Overall, the bridge appears to be in excellent condition. If it is feasible, this bridge would be an excellent opportunity to create a river walk or overlook by adding a pedestrian deck.

The author has ranked the bridge as being regionally significant, due to the excellent historic integrity.
The photo above is an overview. Unfortunately, large amounts of brush obscured a better overview photo.

Republican River Railroad Bridges
Upstream Kyle Republican River Bridge (Yuma)
Downstream Republican River Pegram Truss Bridge


Source Type


Build Date Plaque
Contractor Plaque
Railroad Line History Source ICC Valuation Information, Compiled by Richard S. Steele

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