Turning Bridge At Smallhouse!

An Old Bridge That Is Positioned With River Flow & Locked.
Years Ago, It could be Turned For A Train Crossing.
Could It Ever Be Used Again?

photo by jrd.

Greetings you two and hope that your weather is as nice as what we are having.  Just a perfect day, but had to wear a long sleeve shirt as it was just a little cool for short sleeves.

For starters, thanks for the timely response and your multi-purposes ideas for the concrete structure..  They seem to be in order and all seem feasible.  I can even agree with most of them.  I have them listed below and will expound just a tad on each.  Hope you don't mind.  Then I will tell you what I have come up with.

1.  Place to build a fire to unthaw the mechanism or to keep warm.

2.  Some sort of stop, rest stop, or emergency stop.

3.  Some sort of signaling device.

4.  Positioning device.

1. Just don't like this one and for several reasons.  There does not seem to be any place to remove the ashes.  That plus, heat would not be localized enough to do any good.  I do like your thinking process though as coal was probably plentiful in that time frame.

2. Can't find much fault with item #2.   Some sort of a rest stop here might be feasible.  An emergency stop would be further back up the tracks, but this could have been a final stop before the train plunged into the river.

3. A signaling device is also a possibility, although this too should have been furthers up the tracks.  Let us not forget the river traffic as it could have been some sort of a signaling device for the boats. 

4. Positioning device-Guess that I like this idea best of what you have come up with.  Although, I can not fathom any means of positioning from this placement, it is possible. 

Three good ideas and a possible.  Appreciate your input and we may never know the true purpose.  The first time that I saw the cylinder structure, I just could not come up with much as, like you, I was thinking of some sort of a safety device or possible warning or emergency device.  I even mentioned it to Donnie and he came up blank.  When I was making up the stat, I though of another possible use and I liked that use enough that is would be my number one answer.  A cylinder structure with the base at the river's edge leads me to believe that it could have been a pump basin or at least a well type structure for the taking of water from the river.  There is an old depot base  as well as a water tank base near where I was standing when I took the picture.  A large pump would fit just fine on top of the concrete structure.  One flaw to this though and that is electricity or the lack of electricity.  I am not sure that this site had electricity in that time frame.  The water tank had to be filled by some means and I don't think that it was hand pumped.  Could it have been a gasoline driven pump.  I do think that the bridge was swung around by the use of a gasoline engine.

Like I say; We may never know.  Thanks again for your input and now I have more possibilities.  Will let you know if anything else comes in, but don't look for much more.

See you.......

"Smallhouse Turning Bridge On The Green River.".

The photographer was standing on the old railroad bed at Smallhouse when the picture below was taken. The rails and the ties have previously been removed. The gate in the center of the picture is positioned just before the bank pier. A small trestle once existed, that connected this bank pier with the anchor point or the bridge connecting pier. This short trestle has recently been set afire and burned and some unburned parts still exist. Oh, what some people do for fun.
Look Closely At The Sub-Structure Above Bridge Center-At The Top Is The Bird's Nest.

Click on Swinging Bridge to reply.

See you......jrd

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