Nielsville Bridge Drone Flyover Video

A while back we posted a blog about the Nielsville/Cummings bridge over the Red River between Cummings, North Dakota and Nielsville, Minnesota. The bridge has deteriorated significantly and is presently closed pending replacement by a new bridge.

Max Schumacher (YouTube Channel here) recently visited and sent us an email to share the drone video he captured. It’s amazing footage of this historic Red River crossing, and it’s available in HD too, so if you have the capability, stream it to your largest TV for full effect.

Continue reading “Nielsville Bridge Drone Flyover Video”

What Will Become of This Historic Bridge?

In May of 2014, I took a trip along the Red River to photograph a bunch of historic bridges for a potential future book, and found this place, a bridge I had never visited before.

Officially it is Traill County and North Dakota Highway Departments Project No. FAS 71A. Locals refer to it as the Nielsville Bridge, after Nielsville, Minnesota, the closest community to the bridge (Cummings, North Dakota is a few miles west).

Built in 1939, the bridge was in pretty bad shape when I visited in 2014–it had been repaired a number of times, and asphalt patches were visible in the road deck in several places. In 2015, a hole opened up in the deck and the bridge was closed. It has been closed ever since, and the question remains–What will become of this historic bridge?

Continue reading “What Will Become of This Historic Bridge?”

More Historic Automobile Bridges

This is part two in our series about historic North Dakota automobile bridges. In part one, we focused on Sheyenne River crossings in southeast North Dakota. This time, we’ve photographed historic steel bridges in East-Central North Dakota, on the Sheyenne, Goose, and James Rivers.

Some of these bridges are closed and abandoned, others are still in use, and one has been restored, but they will all share the same fate without human intervention, so we’ve chosen to document them here.

Continue reading “More Historic Automobile Bridges”

Crossing Caledonia Bridge

We first visited the Caledonia Bridge in 2006 and found it closed to all but foot traffic. We think it’s the second oldest still-standing bridge in North Dakota, having been built in 1895, and second only to the Viking Bridge near Portland. The Viking Bridge was built in 1885 and was restored in 2006, and we definitely think Caledonia Bridge should be high on the list for a restoration in the near-future. It was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1997.

We returned for another visit in September of 2013 and found the bridge much the same, albeit with a few more weeds and overgrowth. Crossing Caledonia Bridge is peaceful, especially on a gorgeous late-summer night like the night of our visit.

Caledonia Bridge

Caledonia Bridge

Caledonia Bridge

Caledonia Bridge

Order Book Two

Caledonia Bridge

Caledonia Bridge

Caledonia Bridge

Photos by Troy Larson and Terry Hinnenkamp, copyright Sonic Tremor Media LLC

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Now Arriving at Roseville, North Dakota

Roseville, North Dakota is a former Great Northern Railroad station at the intersection of County Roads 11 and 16 in Traill county, about ten minutes southwest of Mayville.

Roseville, ND

Roseville was never much more than a loose collection of farmsteads surrounding a grain elevator. Today, the tracks have been pulled up and the grain elevator is crumbling, but you can imagine a time, in the steam locomotive days, when a train passed through Roseville every day, loading grain from the elevator and delivering settlers to nearby towns with depots.

Roseville, ND
Roseville, ND
Roseville, ND
Roseville, ND
Roseville, ND

Above: Looking down the former railbed, the ties and rails long since pulled up.

Roseville, ND

The condition of the elevator in 2013 didn’t inspire a lot of confidence. It looked like it would topple over, but at last update in 2017, it was still standing.

Roseville, ND

There is one other structure on-site, the white building shown above, which we’re told was the former township school, and was last used as the township hall.

Roseville, ND
Roseville, ND
Roseville, ND
Roseville, ND

Photos by Troy Larson, copyright Sonic Tremor Media LLC

Blanchard is a small town in Traill county about a half hour north of Fargo.  Our Facebook fans warned us that there wasn’t much of a historic nature left to photograph, and they were right.  Linda Grotberg commented: “Blanchard, is another reason why your “ghost project” is so important! The two churches, Seim’s Store, Wally’s garage, Blanchard #1 (although the school bld is still there used as a house) Grandma Hazel’s house, the old bank building….all part of mine and my Mother’s childhood….gone forever!”

Troy stopped in and got the photo below.

Nearby is the KVLY TV antenna which was for decades the tallest structure on Earth at 2063 feet tall.  It’s status as the world’s tallest structure was finally surpassed with the construction of Burj Khalifa in Dubai.  However, the antenna remains as the tallest structure in the western hemisphere, and the third tallest structure on earth.  The Tokyo Skytree, completed in 2011, is second.  On a clear day, you can see this mast from 20 miles away.

Photos by Troy, copyright Sonic Tremor Media LLC

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Blanchard and a Really Big Stick

Caledonia’s Historic Bridge

This is the Caledonia Bridge in Caledonia, North Dakota, in Traill County, about twenty miles east of Mayville.  It is closed to all but foot traffic. It is one of the oldest bridges in North Dakota, second to the Viking Bridge in nearby Portland. Viking Bridge has been restored in recent years, and we believe that makes Caledonia Bridge the oldest unrestored bridge in North Dakota. It is on the National Register of Historic Places.

caledonia bridge

This bridge was constructed by Wrought Iron Bridge Company of Canton, Ohio, in 1895. The company built nearly five thousand bridges in the United States and Canada before it was consolidated into the American Bridge Company by JP Morgan in 1900.

caledonia bridge

caledonia bridge

There’s a noticeable tweak in the bridge deck.

caledonia bridge

Caledonia Bridge spans the Goose River.

caledonia bridge

Photos by Troy Larson and Terry Hinnenkamp, © 2015 Sonic Tremor Media

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