ID this type of farm BRIDGE, please

Page 4 of 5  


Well it's nice to know that you at least know that they existed. :-)) They did take a lot of work but they were also low cost and thus had some advantages over pumps et al.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
UPDATE: Heard from a volunteer at the (very minimally staffed) local historical society: "The farmer installed a bridge across the ditch so he could move his machinery across to the adjoining field."
I have my doubts. I'll shoot it again, but I really don't think the bridge is wide enough or the boards strong enough to support vehicle traffic. And as of 2005, the farmer didn't own BOTH of the adjoining sections (though that could have changed). Besides, the bridge is halfway down the field without a barn or tractor storage shed in site. Why not access your field closer to the paved road/barn/corner of field?
He also says the ditch system was installed AFTER the WPA era (1930s). But that doesn't seem to mesh with the antiquated state and style of the bridge.
RW
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Thanks for the update.
You can research at the County Recorder's office to see who owned each parcel over time. Although one or both parcels could have been leased out, too.
I thought the bridge might have been useful for moving livestock.
Moving livestock and/or pumping water would suggest locating the structure at the middle of the parcel's side along the ditch. Equipment, not so (I agree with you - that would suggest placing the bridge closer to the road or barn).
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

The only way that would work for moving livestock is if the bridge was located in the corner of a field that is no longer there. Livestock are very difficult to move to a point in the middle of a fenceline or stream. Fences to move the livestock along into a narrowing point is what would have been needed.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
wrote in message

The ONLY way? Ridiculous. We have gates in the middle of a fence and move the cattle through them all the time. Not too difficult.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
wrote in message

Not exactly true ALL the time. Growing up we had a herd of 40 cattle plus a few milk cow's. We moved them from point A to point B all the time and it's was 1 mile in traveling. Us kids did it ourselve's all on our own. And they had to cross a 200 foot wooden bridge. Crossing the bridge and all the stomping sounds they made, did not bother them. Drove them right down the main that was the main road at that time.
Cows may not be the smartest animal in the land but they do learn. When they know they're leaving a field that's been eaten up, they won't fight the roundup as they know they're literally going to greener pasture.
Been there.
Donna in WA
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
wrote in message

True. Milking cows are an exception to that rule. They know the routine better than their humans do.
Growing up we had a herd of

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On Fri, 28 May 2010 08:47:35 -0700, MNRebecca wrote:

Then it is confirmed that it's an irrigation ditch system? Did he give a better date on when it was dug than after the 30s? Or what government agency did it?
Imo not much can be determined from the condition of the wood deck, other than it not being used for anything heavy recently. The original deck has long since rotted away. And, the bridge was not necessarily new when it was place over the ditch; it could have been salvage.
Were it not for the fact that the bridge is so narrow, getting from one field to another is a reasonable explanation. Farmers do sometimes share equipment/work across property lines. And my grandfather's farm had a r- o-w across a neighbor's property to get to another parcel he owned. What a farmer of that era here did when faced with a small stream was drive across it. I know nothing about irrigation ditches but by guess is there are rules against that sort of thing.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

It could also be that the ditch was initially constructed as a drainage ditch, and also (or later) used for irrigation. Check into any districts that may have built the ditch. It sounds like there must be a fair network of these ditches.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

More pix (full-sized) of the bridge as promised, including close-ups of the bolts/rivets for age estimation. Shot of item lying on the ground was the best I could get.
http://personal.morris.umn.edu/~webbrl/SundeBridge /
Don't know what to make of the electrical systems. Are some older than others? Does the meter look up to date? What's with the row of bunkers (?) with the high voltage warnings? All that for this bridge?
Have I mentioned there's a power substation on the opposite side of this farm, in the northeast corner? Coincidence?
Brought my cousin along. Lived on a farm in the early 1970s. She says an older tractor might fit across the bridge but not a new one and NEVER a combine. Meanwhile, the current owner of my great grandma's farm says it was indeed used for drainage and, if I understood him correctly, irrigation. Farmer to the west has/had light sandy soil and LOTS of water (from wells) AND an irrigation system. He needed to drain off the excess water. Farmer to the east agreed to allow the water to drain into the ditch which he could then use to irrigate his own land. In return, he received permission to use the adjacent, parallel (to the ditch) access road for hunting. Does that all fit/make sense? Still not sure when it all actually happened...
RW
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

From looking at those new pics, I'm confused to what it's original purpose was. It's a bridge but not very wide and built to hold substantial weight. Over built even. It's original intention was probably not to hold any kind of pump, etc. It almost looks like a bridge for a narrow gauge train. Something heavy. Guessing the lift, etc were added after the fact for some reason. Just my thoughts.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
wrote:

From looking at those new pics, I'm confused to what it's original purpose was. It's a bridge but not very wide and built to hold substantial weight. Over built even. It's original intention was probably not to hold any kind of pump, etc. It almost looks like a bridge for a narrow gauge train. Something heavy. Guessing the lift, etc were added after the fact for some reason. Just my thoughts. ______________________________ But can't you just see the lust in the farmer's eye as he checks that out as a possible purchase at an auction of excess 'whatever it was used for'. :-))
"Now if I can only get that for 3 cents (or mebbe I could run up to a whole $50), I can use it to......................"
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On Wed, 02 Jun 2010 08:55:37 -0700, MNRebecca wrote:

Thanks for the follow-up.
The rivets are consistent with it being a pony truss bridge ... early 1900s.
The electrical boxes (3976) belong to the Agralite Electric Coop http://www.agralite.coop/ The boxes have "No PCBs" labels, which date them as having been installed after the late 1970s PCB phase out.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
wrote:

More pix (full-sized) of the bridge as promised, including close-ups of the bolts/rivets for age estimation. Shot of item lying on the ground was the best I could get.
http://personal.morris.umn.edu/~webbrl/SundeBridge /
Don't know what to make of the electrical systems. Are some older than others? Does the meter look up to date? What's with the row of bunkers (?) with the high voltage warnings? All that for this bridge?
Have I mentioned there's a power substation on the opposite side of this farm, in the northeast corner? Coincidence?
Brought my cousin along. Lived on a farm in the early 1970s. She says an older tractor might fit across the bridge but not a new one and NEVER a combine. Meanwhile, the current owner of my great grandma's farm says it was indeed used for drainage and, if I understood him correctly, irrigation. Farmer to the west has/had light sandy soil and LOTS of water (from wells) AND an irrigation system. He needed to drain off the excess water. Farmer to the east agreed to allow the water to drain into the ditch which he could then use to irrigate his own land. In return, he received permission to use the adjacent, parallel (to the ditch) access road for hunting. Does that all fit/make sense? Still not sure when it all actually happened... _____________________________________ Thanks for the follow up pics. I agree with your cousin about getting a tractor across it - these days maybe one of those smaller ones like the European ones used between vineyard rows would get across it but that'd be all in modern machinery. An old Fergie might be able to do it too. I suspect that it might have always been used for irrigation but none of the pipes on there is old enough to suggest that.
It looks like loveey countryside. I wish we had grass that long.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
FarmI wrote:

Where are you from?
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

SE NSW Aus.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
FarmI wrote:

Is that Australia or Austria? My Mothers parents came over here from Austria. Tony
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Tony wrote:

Down Under
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Australia, but then I've met Americans who didn't know there was a difference. The NSW was a clue.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
MNRebecca wrote:

Oh gee, just after I look better and comment on the first pics, here are high res ones! I doubt if anyone would deny there is a big electric motor to drive a pump, and definitly electrical conduit. The high voltage boxes look like every day transformers normally used when the power lines are underground. The question is why so many at one place? One would surely power the pump. The narrow width could be again because it is a used bridge. The trusses were used but they put it together again narrower than original. It didn't need to fit a tractor, no tractor was going to squeeze past the pump anyway.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Related Threads

    HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.