Talk:Welland Canal, bridge 13

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2nd canal bridge[edit]

I note an edit by an anonymous user regarding how the 2nd canal bridge moved. I had indicated it to be a swing bridge, and it was edited to indicate that historians did not agree on how it moved.

I will confess that I bent the rules of Wikipedia just a bit in that I could find no single published source which indicated exactly how it moved. Nevertheless, the photograph does seem to remove any doubt about it being a swing bridge. It shows a beam/truss structure with overhead support cables. These cables contain no visible winch mechanism to lift the bridge, nor are there any counterweights visible, and the "tower" in the middle of the bridge is insufficiently braced to carry the unbalanced live load of the span if it were to lift bascule style by some unseen mechanism.

The bridge also appears identical to one in Port Colborne during the same era, as pictured in Mr. Merritt's Ditch, page 87 (ref in article). This photograph contains a published caption about it being a swing bridge. It also offers some clue on how it may have been swung, showing a curved walkway alongside the short end of the bridge. This may suggest that someone (or a couple of someones) simply pushed it around. The Main Street Bridge photo shows what appears as if it could be a wooden handle on the nearest corner, possibly providing the operator with something to grip and pull the bridge around.

The map on page 132 of the same book also shows a fender or wall to the north of Main Street, approximately long enough for the length of the bridge when swung.

It would be helpful to know the sources of the differing points of view regarding the operation of this bridge. My admittedly quick search was unable to find even one published source which described operation of this bridge without the need for interpreting diverse bits of evidence to draw a conclusion. I would enjoy reading and considering contrasting views or interpretations.

Radtek67 (talk) 02:05, 15 January 2008 (UTC)

If no one provides any evidence to the contrary by February 29th, 2008, I will edit the information on the second canal bridge back to a statement of it being a swing bridge on or shortly after that date, based on the justification above. I will describe my source better than I did in the original article before the edit.

Radtek67 (talk) 02:51, 25 January 2008 (UTC)

Added these updates early, as additional sources have been located which do specifically confirm in text what is obvious from the photograph. Please discuss, or provide sources, before removing.
Radtek67 (talk) 23:18, 13 February 2008 (UTC)


My family business actually did the overhaul project for this bridge, or rather the concrete deck. It was completed in 2008. I've edited the article to reflect that. --Mphilp (talk) 18:47, 20 February 2009 (UTC)