The current bridge, which was completed in 1929, is the eighth bridge to span the river at this point. In 1853 the bridge was struck by a steamer, called the London, and collapsed, blocking traffic on the river. The bridge was dredged and river traffic resumed on September 8. In 1854, the city approved an expenditure of $12,000 to replace the bridge with a pivot bridge. During the Lager Beer Riot in 1855, the bridge was pivoted to help contain the rioters.
The Eastland was supposed to sail from the dock at the Clark Street Bridge on July 24, 1915 when it capsized.