Fall 1885

When the leaves fell in 1885, as our readers know, the county bridge crew remained largely unfettered by the supervisors, despite efforts by the board and the auditor to oversee all bridge fund spending. That included all new contracts and expenses related to procuring materials and, at every session, dozens upon dozens of new bridge fund warrants for labor, much of which paid for men and their teams to haul dirt, gravel, and rock for sub-structural work. 

Bridge fund warrants for the era were usually mundane but include telling details: The Clearwaters, John Arnold, J.R. Shannon, William Kale, Levi Lukecart, Dave Silvers, Marion and John Addy, were the backbone of the bridge crew, with Jefferson Wheat and Jeff Brassfield developing a mastery of the pile drivers. Some well-known county crossings received attention that fall; the Middle River bridge south of Peru buzzed with activity, the Donahue Bridge substructure was filled in, and Bertholf, Buffalo, Callison, Howerton, and Wight bridges all saw major repairs. 

The newness had yet to wear off of Clark Bridge (later known as Hogback), and with now-familiar figures of Holliwell, Burger (later known as McBride), Cedar, and Roseman covered bridges taking up their places in the pastoral landscapes around Winterset, the countryside gradually assumed a bucolic charm combining natural and architectural beauty which we celebrate today. Master carpenter, inventor, and bridge crew co-foreman Harvey P. Jones had made his mark in Madison County, and his masterpieces have proven to be an unparalleled cultural legacy. 

Madison County boosters could finally say that, as a whole, their rivers and streams were well-bridged. That was the tune they were intent on singing, but could they afford to keep paying the fiddler? How much longer would Harvey P. Jones and George K. Foster lead the bridge crew? Next week we’ll continue our story of the county bridge crew and focus on George K. Foster – the carpenter with a knack for sub-structural engineering who, along with Jones, was the county’s first bridge crew foreman. 

Bridge fund warrants drawn on vacation: (67) H.P. Jones, 12 days labor on bridges and expense to Des Moines, $37.75 (68) A.L. Martin, labor on Bertholf Bridge, $6.00 (69) John Arnold, labor on McNamara Bridge, $10.50 (70) Gould & Howell, labor and mdse for bridges, $132.28 (71) J.R. Shannon, labor on Marley Bridge, $13.50 (72) John McDole, labor, $15.00 (73) A. Hymes, half-day unloading Patterson Bridge, $.75 (74) Jeff Brassfield, labor, $22.38 (75) John Arnold, labor on Bertholf Bridge, $14.00 (76) Dave Silvers, same, $33.00 (77) John Clearwater, same, $14.00 (78) Dave Fife, same, $14.00 (79) Wm. Kale, same, $14.00 (80) E. Kitch, same, $14.00 (81) Jeff Wheat, labor on Bertholf and Buffalo bridges, $15.75 (82) Lon Clearwater, labor, $12.00 (83) Hugh C. Addy, labor on Buffalo Bridge with team, $36.00 (84) H.P. Jones, labor, $36.00 (85) George Hicks, labor on Wight Bridge, $2.00 (86) Levi Lukecart, labor on Marley Bridge, $8.25 (87) Bill Ankcart, labor and teaming on bridges, $11.50 (88) J.R. Shannon, 5.5 days labor framing truss span, $12.38 (89) A.L. Martin, 4 days teaming on Donahue Bridge, $12.00 (90) D. Clearwater, 6.5 days labor, $15.50 (91) Dave Clearwater, 10 days labor, $24.00 (92) John Arnold, 6 days labor, $10.50 (93) Dave Silvers, labor, $13.50 (94) John Clearwater, 6 days labor, $10.50 (95) Tom Stark, 2 days teaming, $6.00 (96) Robert Morris, ¾ day teaming on Morris Bridge, $1.86 (97) Rufus Ullery, labor on Wight Bridge, $3.75 (98) Jeff Brassfield, labor on Donahue Bridge, $12.00 (99) J.R. Shannon, 6 days labor on Bertholf Bridge, $13.50 (100) Marion Addy, labor $18.00 (101) John Addy, labor on Bertholf Bridge, $15.75 (102) Simeon Drakes, same, $14.25 (103) L.M. Bertholf, same, $1.50 (104) Dave Fife, same, $17.50 (105) Wm. Kale, same, $17.50 (106) H.P. Jones, 10 days labor on Bertholf Bridge, $3.00 (107) John McDole, labor, $33.00 (108) W.W. Hudspeth, labor on Bertholf Bridge, $11.38 (109) J.R. Shannon, same, $9.00 (110) A.M. Hart, same, $21.38 (111) James Lukecart, 9.5 days on Bertholf Bridge, $14.75 (112) J.R. Shannon, 2 days framing truss span, $2.50 (113) F.M. Johnson, labor quarrying rock for Wight Bridge, $3.85 (114) CRI&PRR, freight on repairs for Callison Bridge, $7.50 (115) John Shambaugh, labor on Pierce Bridge, $1.25 (116) Austin Reid, labor on Peru Bridge, $22.50 (117) D.M. Silvers, labor on Callison Bridge, $13.50 (118) J.D. Ross, labor, $2.25 (119) John McDole, 5 days teaming on bridges, $15.00 (120) J.H. Cregar, 4.5 days labor on Peru Bridge, $6.75 (121) Frank Cregar, 4.5 days teaming on Peru Bridge, $13.50 (122) Dave Fife, 5 days and 2 hrs. labor on Callison Bridge, $9.25 (123) Bill Kale, same, $9.25 (124) Wm. Lukecart, 4 days labor and 1 day teaming on Callison Bridge, $9.00 (125) Wm. Lukecart, 8 days labor and 1 day teaming on Callison Bridge, $15.00 (126) J.R. Shannon, 5 days labor on Callison Bridge, $11.25 (127) H.P. Jones, labor, $32.75 (128) E. Kitch, 8.5 days labor on Callison Bridge, $14.87 (129) Jeff Wheat, same, $14.88 (130) G.W. Hawkins, 4.5 days on Peru Bridge, $6.75 (131) C.C. Schults, 1 day teaming on Howerton Bridge, $3.00 (132) J.R. Shannon, labor on Callison Bridge, $9.00 (133) W.W. Hudspeth, same, $15.25 (134) A.M. Hart, same, $21.37 (135) King Bridge Co, repairs on Callison Bridge, $45.00 (136) James Lukecart, 8.5 days labor on Callison Bridge, $12.75 (137) George W. Moore, 4.5 days labor on Peru Bridge, $6.75 (138) A. Pierce, half –day hauling piling for Pierce, $1.25 (139) G.W. Thomas, 1 day labor on Drake Bridge, $1.50 (140) D.W. Clearwater, 9 days labor, $22.20 (141) John Clearwater, labor, $11.38 (142) Lon Clearwater, labor, $27.00 (143) John Arnold, labor, $14.00 (144) Wm. Lukecart, 2 days labor and 2 days teaming, $9.00 (145) Levi Lukehart, 2 days teaming, $6.00 (146) J.R. Shannon, labor on Howerton Bridge, $4.50 (147) James Lockhart, labor, $3.00 (148) J.R Shannon, 2.5 days labor on Howerton Bridge, $5.62 (149) Levi Lukecart, 4 days teaming on Howerton Bridge, $12.00 (150) Wm. Lockhart, 6 days teaming on Howerton Bridge, $18.00 (151) CRI&PRR, balance freight on repairs to Callison Bridge, $1.00 

Record read and approved Nov. 10, 1885.