Tuesday, July 28, 2009

An Easily Swallowed Tale of Two Bridges

Once upon a time it was 1933. There was a tiny community consisting of Radium Springs (named for the healing radium in the hot spring waters), Leasburg (famous for the whore house that serviced the Fort Selden soldiers), and Fort Selden (famous as the Indian fighting fort where MacArthur was a little guy dressed in a dress. This community sprawled around the Rio Grande and at one spot, crossed it. A two lane timber and beam bridge was constructed to span the river and served car, foot, bicycle and horse traffic. It made a bee-line (straight) across from one point of the road to the other.

Some time about 75 years later, county engineers came along and declared the old bridge to be inadequate and unsafe and designed a new metal one to replace the old one. The tiny community mustered, research was conducted, papers drawn up. The old bridge officially became an "Historic Bridge," signed and protected. So the new bridge was built next to the old one, with a gentle jog in the bee-line of the road. People can still walk, bicycle and fish on the old bridge.

Here is a view of the Historic Bridge on the left and the new bridge on the right with the river flowing under both of them:

Also from the lower level of the old bridge one can see graceful swallows (upper right of picture), who have constructed mud nests (the brown line in the center of the picture) all along the underside of the bridge. They raise babies and come and go in swooping masses, eating bugs.

Be sure to stay tuned for a pictorial tour of Radium Springs/Leasburg/Fort Selden coming soon to New Earth Times.
-Laura Solberg-