Three Bridges at Memphis

Three Bridges at Memphis

Three Bridges at Memphis Bridges at Memphis Memphis,Arkansas, United States Martyrs Park, Memphis, TN Memphis-Arkansas Bridge Township Mississippi, Arkansas, United States Frisco Bridge, Mississippi Township, Arkansas, United States From the earliest days of the steamboat, Memphis has been a major center of river transportation. Passenger steamers linked Memphis with river ports up and down the Mississippi, Ohio, and Missouri Rivers. If trains hadn't become a major factor in commerce and transportation, it's doubtful that Memphis would have given a bridge across the Mississippi a serious thought. The city's first bridge was built in 1892, as a railroad bridge. Carriage or Automobile traffic was not a serious factor. And when the second bridge was built in 1916, roadways still seemed to be almost a second thought, because they were hung off both sides in 1917. This is the story of those early bridges and others that have been added since.It must be a law that any type of architectural structure in Memphis should have more than one name. The Frisco Bridge is no exception. It's original name was The Great Bridge at Memphis, . Later that was shortened to The Memphis Bridge and commonly referred to as The Iron Bridge. The name was changed again to The Frisco Bridge when the Harahan Bridge was built in 1916. But no matter what name you call it, it is considered one of America's great bridges.The Frisco Bridge was the first bridge built on the lower Mississippi, and the only bridge south of St. Louis when it opened in 1892. Building it was a monumental undertaking. The US Army insisted on a 770 foot clear span for river navigation, and at least 75 feet of vertical clearance under the bridge. The result was that the Frisco Bridge had the longest span of any bridge in the US at this time. In order to secure a building permit, city officials insisted that the bridge somehow would carry pedestrian and buggy traffic as well as trains. They are also now separated from the traffic lanes by concrete barriers. However sidewalk travel has been prohibited on the bridge. www.historic-memphis.com

Bill Schroeppel

806 10/03/2016 1,183
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