Lewis and Clark's Columbia River
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Lewis & Clark's Columbia River - "200 Years Later"
"Snake River Bridge (Vaughn Hubbard), Washington"
Includes ... Snake River Bridge ... Vaughn Hubbard Bridge ... Snake River Bridge at Burbank ...
Image, 2004, Snake River downstream from Hood Park, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
Snake River looking downstream from Hood Park. Image taken September 26, 2004.


Vaughn Hubbard Bridge ... (U.S. 12) ...
Linking Franklin and Walla Walla Counties, the Vaughn Hubbard Bridge between Pasco and Burbank carries Washington State Highway 12 (U.S. 12) across the Snake River. According to the "bridgehunter.com" website (2016), the westbound lanes (cantilever through truss bridge) were built in 1950 and rehabilitated in 1988, with a total length of 1,770.1 feet. The eastbound lanes (cantilever through truss bridge) were built in 1986, with a total length of 1,779.9 feet.

Snake River Bridge at Burbank, 1921 ...
The first bridge crossing the Snake River near the mouth of the Columbia was built in 1921 and was known as the "Snake River Bridge at Burbank". This bridge replaced the existing ferry and carried a toll until 1927.

According to H.W. Lyman in the May 15, 1921 "Sunday Oregonian":

"Important progress in overcoming the barrier of two rivers, which has isolated southeastern Washington from the rest of that state, has been made this spring, through the completion and opening of the Snake river bridge at Burbank, Wash. While the structure was actually compelted and opened to traffic on April 16, and has been in use since that time, it was not until May 6 that the structure was officially opened and the even was made the occasion of a celebration in which all eastern Washington joined. ...   The new bridge crosses the Snake river a short distance above the point where it empties into the Columbia, and links Walla Walla and Pasco. The Columbia river still is a barrier to be overcome, however, and a movement is already under way which may insure completion of a bridge between Pasco and Kennewick before another year has rolled around. ... The new bridge is 1930 feet long with seven piers. The main span stands 50 feet above extreme high water and is high enough to allow boats to pass under at all times. The structure is of steel with concrete approaches, and cost approximately $230,000." [H.W. Lyman, "Sunday Oregonian", May 15, 1921, Historic Oregon Newspapers Archives, University of Oregon Libraries.]

Image, 1921, Snake River Bridge at Burbank, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
HISTORICAL NEWSPAPER PHOTO: Opening Day Celebration, Snake River Bridge at Burbank, May 6, 1921. Image courtesy "Sunday Oregonian", May 15, 1921, Historic Oregon Newspapers Archives, University of Oregon Libraries, 2016.


Snake River Bridge Destroyed, 1949 ...
On September 9, 1949, the Snake River Bridge at Burbank burned. According to the "HistoryLink.org" website (2016, "The Free Online Encyclopedia of Washington State History"):

"On the night of September 9, 1949, the Snake River Bridge near Burbank, which crosses the Snake near its confluence with the Columbia and connects Franklin and Walla Walla counties, catches fire. The fire spreads from a cotton blanket hanging from the back of a car. The car is traveling north on State Highway 12 when it crosses the bridge .... Another motorist flags down the driver, but not before the fire jumps to the deck of the bridge. Firefighters extinguish the fire after eight hours of fighting it, but state highway officials declare the bridge a total loss. ... The fire started at approximately 3:30 p.m. The Pasco Fire Department was first on the scene and found the bridge already engulfed. Walla Walla County firefighters used a 500-gallon truck to douse the fire; they did not have hoses long engouh to take water directly from the Snake River ... To keep the fire from spreading, they blew up the Burbank side of the bridge with dynamite. ... Handicapped by restricted access to the fire and a 40-mile-per-hour wind, firefighters could not put out the fire until after midnight. ... operators of a Burbank service station served sandwiches and coffee to firemen on the south shore. Red Cross served food on the Franklin County side." ["HistoryLink.org" website, 2016]

New Snake River Bridge Opens, 1952 ...
A new Snake River Bridge was completed on June 24, 1952. According to the "HistoryLink.org" website (2016, "The Free Online Encyclopedia of Washington State History"):

"The General Construction Company of Portland began construction on a new bridge on April 17, 1950, and completed it on June 24, 1952. The new bridge, built for $1,244,500, was 1,770 feet long and 28 feet wide, with a three-foot sidewalk and concrete deck. The bridge had an 866-foot cantilever truss span and sat 50 feet above high water. The approaches to the bridge had to be straightened for six miles to align with the bridge. Afterward the old burned bridge was dismantled." ." ["HistoryLink.org" website, 2016]

Views ...

Image, 2004, Snake River Bridge from Hood Park, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
Snake River Bridge, from Hood Park. Image taken September 26, 2004.
Image, 2005, Crossing the Snake River, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
Crossing the Snake River, Washington State Highway 12 (U.S. 12), heading west. Heading towards Pasco. Image taken September 24, 2005.
Image, 2005, Crossing the Snake River, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
Crossing the Snake River, Washington State Highway 12 (U.S. 12), westbound. View from front car window while heading towards Pasco. Image taken September 24, 2005.


From the Journals of Lewis and Clark ...

Clark, ...
 




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*River Miles [RM] are approximate, in statute miles, and were determined from USGS topo maps, obtained from NOAA nautical charts, or obtained from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers website, 2003

Sources:    "BridgeHunter.com" website, 2016;    "HistoryLink.org" website, "The Free Online Encyclopedia of Washington State History", 2016;    "Sunday Oregonian", May 15, 1921, Historic Oregon Newspaper Archives, University of Oregon Libraries, 2016;   

All Lewis and Clark quotations from Gary Moulton editions of the Lewis and Clark Journals, University of Nebraska Press, all attempts have been made to type the quotations exactly as in the Moulton editions, however typing errors introduced by this web author cannot be ruled out; location interpretation from variety of sources, including this website author.
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August 2016