Corson Rail Bridge

Warren Pony Truss Bridge over Split Rock Creek
Corson, Minnehaha County, South Dakota

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Name Corson Rail Bridge
Built By St. Paul, Minneapolis & Manitoba Railway
Contractor American Bridge Company of New York
Currently Owned By BNSF Railway
Length 270 Feet Total, 120 Foot Main Span
Width 1 Track
Height Above Ground 20 Feet (Estimated)
Superstructure Type Warren Pony Truss and Trestle
Substructure Type Stone Masonry
Date Built 1902
Traffic Count 8 Trains/Day (Estimated)
Current Status In Use
BNSF Bridge Number 134.71
Significance Moderate Significance
In 1888, the Great Northern Railway began building a branch from their mainline at Garretson, South Dakota towards Sioux Falls.

The line terminated in Sioux Falls until 1893, when the Great Northern Railway continued its expansion towards Yankton, South Dakota; where it met the Chicago & North Western.

The line effectively served as a mainline between the Twin Ports of Duluth and Superior and Sioux Falls, when connected with its connections.

By 1970, the Great Northern merged with rival Northern Pacific and Chicago, Burlington & Quincy to form Burlington Northern Railway.

By the mid-1970s, the trans-Minnesota saw a significant drop in traffic. Along with cutting significant portions of the line in Minnesota, Burlington Northern also took out Yankton to Sioux Falls in 1981.

In 1996, the Burlington Northern merged with the Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe Railway to form BNSF Railway, the current operators of the line from Garretson to Sioux Falls, now the Corson Subdivision.

This small truss bridge crosses Split Rock Creek in the Sioux Falls suburb of Corson, which lies just north of Brandon.
This bridge features an 8 panel, riveted warren pony truss main span. In addition, it is approached by deck girder on either side.
The bridge appears to be in fair condition. The bridge sits on stone substructures. It is worth noting that the stone piers appear to be constructed of a more uneven granite, instead of the typical limestone, such as the abutments and one pier.

The bridge has been ranked as moderately significant by the author, due to the uncommon design for the area and the unique features, such as the piers.
The photo above is an overview. The bridge can easily be seen from nearby roads.

Split Rock Creek Railroad Bridges
Upstream BNSF Split Rock Creek Bridge #4
Downstream Abandoned Split Rock Creek Bridge


Source Type


Build Date American Bridge Company plaque
Contractor American Bridge Company plaque
Railroad Line History Source ICC Valuation Information, Compiled by Richard S. Steele

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