Thursday, April 7, 2016

B&O Bridge over Calumet River

20160521 3285, cropped, a view from the 95th Street Bridge
[The sailboats are milling around waiting for the 95th to go up.]
(Bridge HunterHistoric BridgesSatellite)

The Baltimore & Ohio's original passenger route into Chicago was along the lake, over this bridge, and connected to IC tracks near 71st Street. B&O passenger trains later switched to using the B&OCT to access Grand Central Station. Since even the freight service dried up on this original lake shore route in the 1970s, there was no need to repair the Strauss heel-trunnion bascule bridge when a ship wrecked it in 1988 (more below). So the span has been removed and only the lift structure remains. which is the diagonal structure on the right in the above picture.

A view taken through an open gate across the CSL yard
Camera Resolution
View of the west side

Stan Hawker commented on his posting
A more recent picture of the bridge before the accident can be seen in the background of The Blues Brothers movie poster.
Steve OConnor posted
When ship meets railroad bridge . . . Calumet River, South Chicago
Tribune Article

Bob Lalich commented on Scott Griffith's posting
I took this the morning after the accident in May of 1988. Imagine the sound when it happened...

Scott Griffith posted six pictures of the accident. The comments indicate that the bridge was in the upright position and "the ship drifted into the underside of a stationary bridge.But the article below provided by a comment indicates the bridge was not in the full upright position as the bridge of the boat passed.






Wiliam Kruspe commented
Here's the article
[Actually, it was an allision instead of a collision.]
Scott Griffith posted
just found this in a trains mag
Rich Thielman I loved working at this tower. It was known as CR tower on the B&OCT.Rich Thielman My memory is somewhat hazy nowdays, but I recall that bridge was 375 feet long. When you were 'breaking in', they would have you lay down on the east end of the bridge, then take it all the way up. What a view that was, but also scary as hell.
[Unless they were wearing a fall protector harness that was attached to the bridge, I believe that "ride" would violate OSHA standards :-)]

Back in better days when it was still being used by passenger trains.

Scott Griffith posted
Lake front B&O
Bob Lalich This is one of a number of photos taken by Otto Perry at this East Side location. More can be found on the Denver Public Library site:
Rick Smith posted
B&O "Capitol Limited", the rear being adorned with Pullman-Standard built 5 DBR - lounge blunt-end observation, "Metcalf", is shown eastbound, crossing the B&O (corrected per Bob Lalich, from earlier stated as "B&OCT) Strauss heel-trunnion bascule bridge at the Calumet River. Following the *allision* (a nautical term) of the freighter vessel "Pontokratis" with the bridge in May 1988, the seemingly brownfield-entombed remains of this bridge has become a captivating if not pre-occupying subject of periodic review within this group. -==-
[photo - courtesy, John H. Kuehl]
Bob Lalich This line and bridge was owned by the B&O, rather than its B&OCT subsidiary.
Scott Griffith posted
The Penn and NYC were also still using swing bridges when B&O constructed their Strauss-trunnion bascule bridge.
From another posting: "1913 B&( Lake Front bridge"
Bob Lalich commented on the above posting
Here is a before and after drawing from HAER.
Scott Griffith posted
1913 B&O Lake Front bridge
Gary Golden Before the maintainers would qualify to work CR Tower you had to ride the bridge to the top...1975.
David Daruszka commented on the above posting
John W. Barriger III

The third image in a 1914 report has some information on this bridge.

Bob Lalich Flickr 1981 Photo, still intact (it was destroyed in 1988)

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