Completed in 1880, the route provided the original Winona & St. Peter mainline in Minnesota with an outlet to the west.
Work stopped at the Missouri River, due to a treaty not allowing settlement on a reservation west of the Missouri River. However, this was repealed in 1905, and the line later extended.
By 1900, the route became part of the Winona & St. Peter Railroad, which was immediately merged into the Chicago & North Western Railway.
From 1900 until 1986, the line changed very little. It was important to the growth of Eastern South Dakota, and provided a launching point for a line between Pierre and Rapid City.
In 1986, C&NW proposed abandoning the route. A group of politicians stepped in and secured the line for future use, turning it over to the newly formed Dakota, Minnesota & Eastern Railroad.
DM&E operated this route with a high level of success until 2008, when they would be purchased by Canadian Pacific Railway. CP in turn spun the route west of Tracy, Minnesota off to the Rapid City, Pierre & Eastern Railroad in 2014.
Today, this route is the core of the RCP&E mainline in South Dakota. It is believed that it will continue to be operated for a long term future.
This small through girder bridge crosses Pierre Street in downtown Pierre, near the State Capitol.
Consisting of a pair of through girder spans, the bridge was built in 1907. In addition to the main spans, the bridge was approached by I-Beam spans.
In addition, the bridge sits on stone abutments and steel piers.
Overall, the bridge remains in good condition.
The author has ranked this bridge as being locally significant, due to the common design.
The photo above is an overview. The bridge can be accessed from the road below.