Theodore Roosevelt Memorial Bridge

Also known as: Troy Bridge
Crossing the Kootenai R at Riverside Dr., Troy, Montana

Map 

Description 

"Before Libby Dam tamed the river, the Kootenai became "a death dealing torrent in high water time." Raging currents regularly shut down ferries, stranding supplies intended for logging and mining camps and keeping north side children from their school across the river. The lack of roads and bridges also stymied economic development. Proper infrastructure, area boosters claimed, would bring both more settlers and automobile tourists en route to Glacier National Park. Voters concurred, passing a $125,000 bond measure in 1911 to improve roads and construct bridges at Libby, Troy, and Rexford. The Coast Bridge Company of Portland, Oregon, won the contract for all three bridges and within weeks a crew of engineers arrived in Libby. Work stopped, however, when Eureka residents, possibly angry over not getting their own bridge, filed an injunction to halt construction. Bridge and road contracts provided notorious opportunities for graft, but in this case the court found no wrongdoing. Construction resumed in June, and on December 17, 1912, the Troy Bridge (later renamed after President Theodore Roosevelt) opened to traffic. "The bridge is the best of its kind," crowed a local newspaper. "Two spans, with a middle pier, and is perfect in every respect." In fact, the bridge's Parker through-truss design was well-suited for the location. The rigid triangle trusses provided the structural stability needed to span the wide river, and the pre-manufactured rolled steel beams made on-site assembly relatively simple. Of the three Kootenai valley bridges to share the standardized design, this is the only one still standing." - NRHP/Montana Historical Society plaque

National Register information 

Status
Posted to the National Register of Historic Places on December 27, 2006
Reference number
06001178
Architectural style
Other architectural type; Parker-through truss
Areas of significance
Transportation; Engineering
Level of significance
Local
Evaluation criteria
A - Event; C - Design/Construction
Property type
Structure
Historic function
Road-related
Current function
Road-related
Periods of significance
1900-1924; 1925-1949; 1950-1974
Significant year
1912

Update Log 

  • July 18, 2019: Updated by Richard Doody: Added historical information

Sources