HISTORIC U.S. 66 BRIDGE DATABASE 1926-1985
© 2015 Jim Ross
FOR NON-PROFIT USE ONLY
COMPILED BY JIM ROSS IN PREPARATION FOR THE BOOK: ROUTE 66 CROSSINGS: Historic Bridges of the Mother Road, published in 2016 by THE UNIVERSITY OF OKLAHOMA PRESS. It is recommended that the book be used as a companion to this database.
Information in this database makes no claim to the final word on the bridges of Route 66, simply because it remains a work in progress. In addition to unresolved questions about early Route 66 alignments in some areas as well as dates that certain pathways were signed as US 66, the quest to ferret out build dates and bridge types for many of the lost structures continues. Along that thread, no attempt was made to verify which bridges original to the interstates carried Route 66 signage as the route was gradually dismantled, though the ones likely to have done so are addressed in the database. Some culverts that were too small to qualify as bridges but with historical significance were documented also, along with a few notable examples of structures integral to the roadway, such as railroad grade separations and tunnels.
To the extent records were available, state departments of transportation were the primary source used to verify bridge types and build dates. It was also necessary to use unofficial web-based resources and documents found in the literature, not all of which could be considered reliable. In some instances, build dates were estimated (circa) based on favored designs for a given era and other supporting evidence.
Bridges are listed using a separate document for each Route 66 state (linked below), while entries within each document follow an east-to-west geographical order. In addition to the numbered entries, there are notes providing anecdotal information or giving brief mention of structures not more fully documented.
Not all bridges that are listed on the National Register of Historic Places are so noted, though many are. Finally, with few exceptions, references to direction will be Eastbound or Westbound, regardless of the true direction of the road in a given instance. Unless otherwise attributed, all photos are by the author.