Much Less Difference Than It Seems — Old Structures Engineering

That’s the Victoria Bridge over the Saint Lawrence River at Montreal, as seen in 1901. The river is quite a bit wider than the main channel, leading to the bridge configuration seen here: a long (close to two miles) low series of relatively short truss spans with a single higher and longer span over the […]

Much Less Difference Than It Seems — Old Structures Engineering

The Past Through Ruins — Old Structures Engineering

Upstate New York has this ancient-empire theme going on. Cities and towns north of the Catskill Mountains and/or west of the Hudson River include Troy, Utica, Rome, Syracuse, Carthage, and Athens. So perhaps it’s fitting that the bridge above, the Schoharie Aqueduct, so much resembles a Roman ruin. Bridges, of course, are not usually built […]

The Past Through Ruins — Old Structures Engineering

Bostian Bridge Tragedy: 27 August, 1891

Photograph by William Stimson, courtesy of Betty Boyd. North Carolina Collection, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Library., Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons


We’ve heard of a lot of ghost stories involving bridges in our lifetimes. However the next film documentary presented here in the Chronicles has to do with one of the worst in its history. The story takes us to Statesville, in Iradell County, North Carolina and to one of the most haunted bridges in the state- Bostian’s Bridge. The bridge features five concrete closed spandrel arch spans, spanning Third Creek carrying the Norfolk and Southern Railroad. The bridge is 260 feet long and the deepest point oft he ravine is approximately 60 meters.  It is unknown when the bridge was built or who built it, the bridge is infamous for a tragedy that happened 130 years ago. On August 27th, 1891, a train disaster happened on the bridge which was so gruelsome, the historians have pegged it as one of the worst train-bridge disasters in the history of American railroad, sometimes comparing it tot he Ashtabula Railroad Bridge disaster of 1876. The disaster, as will be told in this documentary presented here, eventually produced supernatural encounters that have lingered to the present, eventually causing another train-bridge disatser 119 years later. Have a look at the story:


This is what the bridge looks like today, the photo courtesy of Royce and Bobette Haley:

The train still serves traffic to this day, yet should the line be discontinued at some point, there will definitely be some hesitancy in repurposing the bridge because of its haunted past. Chances are likely that it will eventually succumb to nature, which will take over, and allow the ghosts to be at peace. For some haunted bridges, they are best if left as is without altering or even destroying it.


Lightweight At Little Falls — Old Structures Engineering

Another featherweight truss, this time crossing the Mohawk River at Little Falls, New York. As can be seen by the two horse-and-wagon combinations, it was a road bridge. Little Falls is situated on both sides of the river at a bend, which I’m sure someone who knows more than me about river flow could say […]

Lightweight At Little Falls — Old Structures Engineering

A Curious Misconception — Old Structures Engineering

The title of this 1890s photo is “The Levee Below The Bridge” and it shows the main channel of the Mississippi River at Winona, Minnesota. We’ve got a couple of riverboats tied up (the one on the left is registered in La Crosse Wisconsin), what appears to be Tom Sawyer fishing, and two bridges, one…

A Curious Misconception — Old Structures Engineering

Packard Hill Covered Bridge — The Pennsylvania Rambler

Packard Hill Covered Bridge, Lebanon, New Hampshire I had arrived in Hanover, New Hampshire to pay my respects to one of my favorite short story authors, Corey Ford. As I got back in the vehicle my mother pointed out there was a covered bridge not too far away that looked like it had a place […]

Packard Hill Covered Bridge — The Pennsylvania Rambler

Covered Bridges of Somerset County — Wynn Worlds

If you thought Lancaster County had cornered the market on covered bridges in Pennsylvania, you’d be wrong. Somerset County holds claim to ten such bridges, so of course I went in search of some of them one sunny afternoon. And by “in search of” I mean that there’s not one website with all the GPS […]

Covered Bridges of Somerset County — Wynn Worlds

Pearl River — Traces of Places

The Pearl River in southern China is also often used as a catch-all for the watersheds of the Xi (“West”), Bei  (“North”), and Dong (“East”) Rivers of Guangdong Province, since they all share the Pearl River Delta with, and are considered tributaries of, the Pearl River. The 1,500 mile-long Pearl River system, as measured from the farthest reaches of the Xi River, is China’s 3rd-longest (after the Yangtze River and […]

Pearl River — Traces of Places