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Brownsville herald. [volume] (Brownsville, Tex.) 1910-current, July 01, 1928, SOCIETY, Image 20

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Persistent link: https://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn86063730/1928-07-01/ed-1/seq-20/

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World’s Highest
Bridge Located
West of Rockies
The Twin Falls-Jcrome bridge
across the Snake river in Idaho bears
the proud title of the highest bridge
in the world, 476 feet from bridge
floor to surface of the water. It
is 1,400 feet in >ength longer than
the International Bridge at Niagara.
Romance surrounds its location.
The dsep canyon of t‘ e Snake river
formed an almost impossible barrier
to the pioners from the days of
Lewis and Clark to the covered
wagons of the old Oregon Trail. It
threatened the loss to us of the
Oregon country. Many of Dr. Whit- i
man's party went south to Califor
nia, with only a few brave souls
holding to the Oregon Trail throurh
the perils of crossing at this point.
Nation’s Bridges Tell
Story of Progress
The highest, longest and largest
bridges of the world arc in America. ■
and according to economic authori
ties, are necessary and typical of !
American progress. The process of
overcoming natural barriers is un
der way and has been accomplished
by large construction companies.
The most spectacular engineering
feats of the age are such works as
the Twin Falls-Jerome bridge in
Idaho, the “Bridge of the Gods," I
across the Columbia river; the mile
long Camdcn-P’r.iladelphia bridge
with the largest span in the world,
and even the old Brooklyn bridge
in New York City.
Others are being planned, such as
the proposed span across the Golden
Gate in San Francisco, and one pro
* je^ Led to connect New York and
New Jersey across the Hudson river
at 179th street, Fach of these, it
is estimated, will have a span twice
the length of any span exising to
day.
Longest Swing Span
Crosses Chehali3
The Chehalis river bridge at Aber
deen has a swing span of 303 feet,
the greatest in Washington. This
great reach swings on a central pivot
in the middle of the stream. It was
designed by M. M. Caldwell, bridge
engineer of Seattle, who also de
signed the Gateway bridge.
Wishkah Bridge
h “Jack-Knife”
The Wishkah river bridge in Aber
deen, Wash., differs from the swing
span type of bridge in that it is of
'‘jack-knife’’ construction or Straus
Bascule type. The mam span lifts
at one end, being hinged at the
other.
In this structure is incorporated
Straus’ most rc ent improvement,
notably an air cushion device to ab
sorb the shock when the bridge let;
down. The opening of this bridge
has changed the traffic direction in
Aberdeen, and has had an important
effect upon the economic develop
ment of the district.
Notable Projects In
U. S. Handled By
Northwest Company
Some of the most gigantic con
siruction projects in the Tnited
States have been the work of a
Pacific Northwest organisation. One
of the most spectacular engineering
achievements, the Twin Falls-Jeromo
bridge in Idaho, the highest in the
world, was the work of the Puget
Sound Bridge and Dredging com
pany.
Another outstanding bridge
achievement of this company is the
famous steel span over the Colum
bia river at Cascade, Ore. This span
is 1,570 feet long, extending acros.
the river gorge at a point where
the supposed natural “Bridge of the
Gods” once stood.
Dating from 1889, this company's
operations has included many big
construction jobs, great bridges, sky
scrapers, industrial plants, reclama
tion projects, channel and harbor de
velopments, etc. The filling in of
the great area in Seattle south of
the railway depots involved handling
approximately 25,000,000 cubic yard?
of material by their dredges. The
Dexter Horton building, Seattle, i
an example of another phase of the
company's work. The bridge project
now completed at Brownsville and
other operations in Canada and
Alaska illustrate the range of this
organisations activities.
Steel Men Encounter
Tremendous Hazards
On Gigantic Projects
Samuel H. Hedges, an engineer
who has served the Northwest in
many of its greatest projects, was
asked about the effect of the safety
movement on steel workers. He re
plied, “It has given the men as much
pride in doitg a job without acci
dent, as they naturally have in fabri
eating the structure itself.
“Lives actually lost in the ‘steel
game’ are surprisingly few com
pared with the chances steel men
have to t ke. On one huge project j
we completed recently, the men kept I
the record apotless in spite of the!
fact that it was one of the greatest
and most difficult undertakings in
the world.
“All the work was done from
above. On a cable suspended be
tween the sides of a great canyon
the men were carried to work, and
material hauled Into place. T he |
steel men are a tribe of themselves.
highly trained, virile and competent,
with a dialect of their own. They
are n prideful lot, too. especially of
any outstanding achic-eiuent. On
the project referred to. they worked
l over 600 feet above the river far
\ below. A slip meant a sheer drop,
a* and death. They were a3 p. <ud o:
\thc.i record of no fatalities as they
V"-- 1
J*
Gateway International Bridge
crossing the Rio Grande at
Brownsville, Texas
—Photo by Holm’s Studio
P B 11IIS advertisement ceelbrates the open
• ing of a new International Bridge
I across the Rio Grande at Brownsville
where Mexico meets Uncle Sam—a
; massive steel span uniting two great Repub
| lies with an iron handclasp, as it were—a new
bond of commerce, society and friendship.
Not so many years ago ... as time is com
puted _a Great River, as the Indians called
it (and later named by the Spaniards, the Rio
Grande) .... formed a mighty barrier with its
serpentine chasm which is now the southern
border of Texas and the United States .... a
barrier of trade prohibition .... a barrier ot
ignorance .... a barrier of suspicion and some
times of bate.
Today, sinews of steel bear streams of
tourists in ease across the once difficult bar
rier .... the nationals of many countries min
gle in peace and friendship, commerce is made
easv, hate and suspicion have vanished and
Progress is promoted.
FOR a day, the new Gateway Bridge is
news, and afterward it is just one of the
taken-for-granted creations of Mod
ernity.
Vet bridges serve, though we speed across j
them daily, accepting them as part of the
commonplace. Markets and trade balances
between vast territories hinge upon bridges,
tunnels, water-routes and airports, as once
the fate of governments hinged on the inipas
sability of the barriers now conquered.
The Southwest... the Border Country ...
and Mexico will continue to BUILD. May
they always build with a sincerity and com
monsense that will reflect credit upon both
countries .... and may the Arts of Peace and
Progress as now exemplified in the building he
never perverted from their original purpose.
Seattle, Washington
ji Contractors to the Gateway Bridge Co., Brownsville, Texas
HI .' • • i
ill _
1 - ■—-—— ....
Beauty Featured
In Span's Design
The Pasco-Kennewick bridge,
crossing the Columbia river at Pasco,
Wash., was one oi the first toll
bridges in that part of the country.
It took the place of the old ferry
plying between Pasco and Kenne
wick. The total length of the struc
ture is approximately 3,000 feet,
with 1,530 feet of steel structure
Its construction was notable in an
other way, from the standpoint of
architectural design. It was in this
bridge that the designer M. M.
Caldwell, of Seattle, introduced what
seemed n radical change, but which
has since been accepted a> a stand
ard of art design in brilj e construc
tion. It was the change from the
; old fashioned piers to piers of
beauty. The Pasco Kennewick bridge
was built with the arch pier, which
most recent books on foundations in
I corporated in their descriptions of
i modern pier design work.
Air Supply In
Constant Danger
In Tunnel Project
Unusual extremes were faced in
the building of the Duwamish river,
tunnel for the city of Seattle. Con
stant air pressure waa necessary to:
make it possible for the men to work
on this project, and even then their
lives were in danger at every step '
The extreme difficulty was caused
by having to work tnrough mud,j
with a cover of only anout 17 feet
and 20 feet of water. With this
treacherous cover, air pockets were
dreaded every minute. If the air
had escaped and the water had come
in, lives would have been sacrificed.
Every known precaution was brought
into play, while the strange job
was inched along a little at a time
to its final completion.
Broken Arm
Only Accident
An outstanding record was made in
the building of the world’s highest
bridge in Idaho, wher- the only ma
jor accident occurring was a frac
tured elbow! Even this happened
on solid ground, after the most dan
gerous work of building the bridge
itself was completed.
Great Steel Span
Is Still “Bridge of
Gods” Over Columbia
One of the world's longest bridges,
the great steel “Bridge of the Gods'*
ut Cascades, is also one of the most
| romantic and picturesque in the
world. Stretching its 1,570 feet far
across the Columbia in the upper
Columbia river gorge, the grent
span takes the place of the legend
ary natural archway which was trod
by Indian warriors.
A great volcanic lattle between
the two mountain* on each side of
the canyon, Mr. Hood and Mt. Adams,
destroyed the huge natural bridge,
according to the legend, and the
[Great Spirit *». dramatized the down
fall of the Willamette Indians.
The present bridge is in the same
spot, commanding the same wild, pic
turesque view. It is widened out at
the center to provide observation!
point before which stretches one of
the great scenic vistas of the world.
This famous bridge connects!
Washington and Oregon a: a strate-,
gic point, where scientists admit the
sheer cliffs rising high on both sides
of the river may give some basis
in fact to the romantic legend.
Great mountainous arms reach into
the air on both north and south
banks of the river, forming a set
I ting of rare grundeur. The ‘•Bridge
of the Gods” is of steel construction
| throughout, with concrete piers.
Some 2,000 tons of steel were used
[ in its construction.
M
Dam Two Miles Long
Built By Different
Method In Texas
Completion of the Garza Dam for
the city of Dallas, Texas, and the
Wichita Dam for a reclamation pro
ject near Wichita Falls, Texas,
marked the introduction of a new
method in dam building Construc
tion of dams was made possible by
the hydraulic dredge method, then
started by the Puget Sound Bridge
& Dredging company, in places where
excessive cost by old methods pro
hibited such projects.
The Garza Dam is two miles
long, with a storage capacity of 150,.
000 acre feet. The Wichita Dam is
100 feet high. MO rem. maximum
width, with 540,000 acre feet storage
capacity.
Athlete to Play On
Polo Team and Crew
NEW YORK~"(^p)I_jf ~.l . ,
_ ,, . ’ 11 **>« schedule
lakers would have the Harvard var
r POl° tMm Pl«v sinr.il
Ciark'f Jy miKht keep Forrester
outfits m "* hi* Place 0n both
But they can’t'balk thi, ubiqu -
ous young man by h„vl tbe
; keams play on successive days, b,
j Proved that last year And h« hope.
I to repeat th.s year.
t Polo^Chamri* ‘n, .*Intercollegiate
;dii nftl? th°.n‘£,p are June 2;i
?ytkp fs h Harvard-Vale regatta.
If the Crimson comes through the
l!J itPStdn?^i,S £tld >
II * '* year, Clark wil I ,
to com/e-e ,n the two gmell n
l eventa/with.n a period of 24 hour*.
J i

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