A Short History of the Chain Of Rocks Bridge

:The initial plan for the bridge was a straight bridge, 40 feet wide, with five trusses forming 10 spans. The bridge would stand 55 feet above the high-water mark on several massive piers. After seeing the initial designs, boat captains protested that the river was already difficult to navigate at this location, and the river current would make it impossible to avoid the bridge piers and the water intake towers. Furthermore, the bedrock was insufficient to support the weight of the piers in their original position. To address engineering issues as well as the concerns of the riverboats, designers added a 24-degree bend in the bridge so that it could connect to the promoter’s property in Missouri and to bedrock on the Illinois side.

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