Celebrating Route 66 and its historic bridges
Posted in: Cultural Resources
Historic bridge and Route 66 enthusiasts alike will enjoy the new book Route 66 Crossings, Historic Bridges of the Mother Road from the University of Oklahoma Press. Coinciding with the 90th anniversary of the establishment of the U.S. Highway system and Route 66, the book focuses on the bridges (past and present) that define this iconic road.
Site-specific history on bridges from Chicago to Santa Monica along the route are included with color photographs in chapters according to the status of bridges – those still in use, abandoned and demolished. Author Jim Ross provides a great overview of bridge types and maps to help you locate select bridges in remote locations and of particular importance.
The book includes both the many common bridge types and culverts along with notable engineering achievements. Examples include the iconic William H. Murray Bridge near Bridgeport in Oklahoma (National Register of Historic Places listing), which consists of 38 Camelback pony trusses spanning the South Canadian River, and the impressive open spandrel arch Colorado Street Bridge in Pasadena (National Register listing).
I am often asked to describe Route 66 and why it is historically important. This book helps tell the story of Route 66 in a new and interesting way. Ross recognizes the important history of the road and adds a surprising amount of detail explaining the engineering and individual character of the many bridges and culverts through the use of photographs and captions to fully engage the reader.
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