Arkansas River Crossing - Bridge 511.6 - Muskogee, OK, MP 506.4 - Muskogee Subdivision -Later Branch

Discussion in 'Bridges' started by dlfapp, Dec 27, 2007.

  1. dlfapp

    dlfapp Member

    I'm new to this board, so thanks for your indulgence.

    I just found out my great, great grandfather worked on the bridge that crosses the Arkansas River at Muskogee, OK.

    I'm trying to find any information on the bridge, like pictures, designs, etc.

    I'd also like to know when they brought the bridge down and why.

    I found a 1971 topo map that shows the bridge's location, but can't really find out any other information.

    Thanks for any help.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 28, 2024
  2. mark

    mark Staff Member Staff Member


    The steel portion of the bridge at Muskogee over the Arkansas River consisted of seven 154'-0" through pin connected trusses (TPCT) , one 60'-0" deck plate girder (DPG) span, one 33'-0" deck plate girder span and one 21'0" deck plate girder (DPG) span. Total steel portion of the bridge length is 1,192'-0". The original portion of the bridge was built in 1905. The two short spans were added in 1956.

    The bridge was located down river of today's U.S. 62 Highway bridge over the Arkansas. Below are a couple of post card views of the bridge shortly after it was constructed.

    Postcard image taken from the Muskogee side of the bridge looking upstream. Note the pointed and upward angled breakwater, particularly prominent on the second pier. View looking northeast.

    Postcard view looking downstream. Note the pointed and upward angled breakwaters on the upward face of the bridge piers. View looing southeast.

    Below is a link to an article by Stewart Michael (Mike) Condren, PhD (1942-2020) about the Ozark and Cherokee Central (OCC) Railroad. This was the railroad that originally constructed the line between Fayetteville, AR through Muskogee to Okmulgee, Indian Territory. It was acquired by the Frisco and operated as the Muskogee Subdivision. As abandonments occurred the line became the Muskogee branch of the Creek Subdivision.

    The end of the bridge came as work passed the site on the then new Kerr McClellan Navigation Project. This work extended the navigable portion of the Arkansas River to the inland Port of Catoosa outside Tulsa, OK. This work combined with other elements lead to the bridge retirement and removal in the late 1960s

    Hope this helps.



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