CN Yellow Creek Bridge (Freeport)

Pratt Through Truss over Yellow Creek
Near Freeport, Stephenson County, Illinois

Click the Photo Above to See All Photos of This Bridge!
Name CN Yellow Creek Bridge (Freeport)
Built By Illinois Central Railroad
Contractor American Bridge Company of New York
Currently Owned By Canadian National Railway
Length 150 Feet Total
Width 1 Track
Height Above Ground 10 Feet (Estimated)
Superstructure Type Pratt Through Truss
Substructure Type Concrete
Date Built 1904
Traffic Count 15 Trains/Day (Estimated)
Current Status In Use
CN Bridge Number 111.8
Significance Moderate Significance
Documentation Date March 2015
In 1886, the Chicago, Madison & Northern Railroad began construction of a line from Freeport, to Chicago.
In Freeport, the line connected to the existing Illinois Central line between Cairo and Iowa. Also in Freeport, the CM&N was building north towards Madison, Wisconsin.

The line was completed by 1890, and became an instant mainline for the Illinois Central. It shortened milage between Iowa and Chicago by nearly 200 miles.

The line also was the fourth into Rockford, which became an important stop for the railroad. In addition, the line bypassed Elgin, but still met with the critical lines heading into Elgin.

The line was double tracked in 1895 between Chicago and Broadview.

The railroad was operated by the Illinois Central, but became a part of it entirely in 1903.

The railroad has seen virtually no changes since it opened. The railroad continues to follow I-55 into Chicago, where it meets up on the south side of Chicago with the mainline towards Centralia.

In 1972, the Illinois Central was renamed the Illinois Central Gulf, after a merger with the Gulf, Mobile & Ohio Railroad.

By 1988, the line was spun off to a subsidiary named Chicago, Central & Pacific. In 1998, the Illinois Central and subsidiaries were purchased by Canadian National Railway, who currently operates the railroad.

The line is operated as the Freeport Subdivision, which sees a fair amount of traffic.

Located near Freeport, this large truss bridge crosses Yellow Creek near Yellow Creek Road.
Built in 1904 to likely replace a wooden bridge, this bridge consists of a single 6-panel pin connected Pratt Through Truss. This bridge sits on concrete substructures.
The truss is of standard design. The portal of this bridge can be found on trusses from this generation.
Overall, the bridge appears to be in good condition. The bridge was accessed with permission from the adjacent property owners.

The author has ranked this bridge as being moderately significant, due to the truss design.
The photo above is an overview.


Source Type


Build Date 1973 Illinois Central track profile
Railroad Line History Source ICC Valuation Information, Compiled by Richard S. Steele

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