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Housefelt Bridge

Musselman Avenue Bridge

   
                  


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Bridge Documented: August 2, 2007
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Key Facts
Bridge Name Facility Carried / Feature Intersected Location Structure Type Construction Date and Builder/Engineer
Housefelt Bridge
Musselman Avenue Bridge
Musselman Avenue (Slickerman Road, TR-494) Over Coxes Creek Somerset: Somerset County, Pennsylvania Metal 3 Panel Rivet-Connected Queenpost Pony Truss, Fixed 1910 By Builder/Contractor: Unknown
Technical Facts
Rehabilitation Date Main Span Length Structure Length Roadway Width Main Spans NBI Number
1949 40 Feet (12.2 Meters) 43 Feet (13.1 Meters) 9.8 Feet (3 Meters) 1 557221049430610

Historic Significance Rating (HSR)

Primary Photographer(s): Nathan Holth and Rick McOmber

View Archived National Bridge Inventory Report - Has Additional Details and Evaluation

It remains unclear why Queenpost truss bridges are often cast aside as "Pratt" truss bridges, as was done with this bridge in the Historic Bridge Inventory. Queenpost truss bridges should not be considered Pratt truss bridges. Queenpost truss bridges represent a design that was used, particularly in the earlier truss bridge era, to create small spans during a time that steel stringers bridges were not economical due to the limits in size of rolled beams. Although a bridge like this one is a late example, it still represents this truss configuration that was a solution for crossings where a three panel bridge was effective. Truss bridges of this length would not be built often into the 20th Century as steel stringer became common for short span applications.

This bridge was however seriously altered when stringers were added below the trusses. This alteration sets this structure behind other Queenpost bridges found elsewhere, but it remains regionally significant where few other Queenposts are to be found.

Information and Findings From Pennsylvania's Historic Bridge Inventory

Discussion of Bridge

The ca. 1910, riveted, Pratt pony truss bridge with outriggers was altered in 1949 when built up stringers were placed below the existing floorbeams. The stringers carry much of the live load. The trusses have minor welded repairs, and they are a common design that is common throughout southwestern Pennsylvania. The bridge, which has no innovative or distinctive details, is not historically or technologically significant.

Discussion of Surrounding Area

The bridge carries 1 lane of an unimproved road over a stream in a wooded and mixed use area at the southeast end of Somerset.

Bridge Considered Historic By Survey: No

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Photos and Videos: Housefelt Bridge

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