22 January 2011

Bridges with histories

The weather was just perfect -- low 40s-brisk and sunny.  Tal and I set out at mid-day for a hike along Turkey Creek in the Sumter National Forest.  The focal point of our outing was to be the Key Bridge, named for Henry Key, recipient of land grants in the historic Edgefield District during the late 18th century.

The water was low on Turkey Creek.  That we were not planning to canoe made the low water a non-issue.  Our walk took us along a hardwood bluff where we could observe the flood plain forest and marshy areas along the creek.  Given the time of day we saw no wildlife to mention with the exception of a huge flock of what Tal called rice birds in a large open field referred to as Price's Bottom.

But, what a pleasure to discover not one but two bridges, each one highlighting the other.  One carries vehicular traffic on Key Road (S-19-68) and the other provides pedestrian access to the hiking/biking trail. 

Both are on their second lives.  The pedestrian bridge was built in 1912 to serve travellers between Augusta and Liberty Hill.  The vehicular bridge was built in 1925 on US17 in Georgetown County.  It was moved to its present location in 1961. 

Seen from the older bridge
this the 150-foot steel two-lane Parker through-truss bridge
built by the Roanoke Iron and Bridge Works.

Built in 1912 and rebuilt in 2007
the original bridge is a 122-foot steel one-lane pin-connected Pratt through-truss.
Note the wonderful cypress knees in the bottom right corner of the photograph.

Both bridges seen from the canoe launch at creek level.

What beauties they are. Converting the images to black-and-white seemed appropriate.  To see an additional photograph of the bridge we crossed in the car, go to my Image a Day on Flickr.

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