Marker Logo HMdb.org THE HISTORICAL
MARKER DATABASE
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Near Melba in Canyon County, Idaho — The American West (Mountains)
 

Guffey Bridge Snake River Idaho

 
 
Guffey Bridge Snake River Idaho Marker image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, June 23, 2013
1. Guffey Bridge Snake River Idaho Marker
Inscription.
The historic Guffey Bridge is an elegant Parker-through truss railroad bridge, the State’s largest artifact, and the site of the most spectacular train wreck in Idaho. The Boise, Nampa and Owyhee Railroad (BNO), was organized by owner Col. Wm. Dewey to transport gold and silver ore from the Silver City mining district. The bridge was constructed between May 14 and Sept. 7, 1897. This 450 ton bridge was, by all accounts, the tallest in the U.S. for many years.

Unfortunately, the mines closed before the bridge was completed. Although it never hauled ore, shipments of livestock and other agricultural products kept the railway busy until 1947. The bridge saw more sheep and cattle transported across its span than any other in the west. The BNO railway was taken over by the Idaho Northern Railway in 1907, and absorbed by the Oregon Short Line in 1912, then a subsidiary of the Union Pacific.

After the line closed, the bridge was rescued from being sold for scrap. Canyon County Parks, Recreation and Waterways, Idaho State Historical Society, Idaho Military, Idaho Fish and Game, Idaho Heritage Trust and the National Trust for Historical Preservation, all contributed to the preservation of the bridge. The Guffey was entered in the National Register for Historic Places in 1978. The bridge was restored and
Guffey Bridge Snake River Idaho Marker (<i>wide view</i>) image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, June 23, 2013
2. Guffey Bridge Snake River Idaho Marker (wide view)
Wide view of the marker shows nearby stone engraved "Dedicated to all Eagle Scouts who helped build Celebration Park". Guffey bridge is visible is in the distance, but obscured by the foreground brush from this angle.
the re-dedicated on Sept. 7, 1991. This pedestrian bridge allows visitors to enjoy the trails and views of the Snake River Canyon and Celebration Park.
 
Erected 2012 by Canyon County Parks, Recreation and Waterways and the Snake River Chapter, No. 1811 E Clampus Vitus.
 
Location. 43° 17.97′ N, 116° 31.334′ W. Marker is near Melba, Idaho, in Canyon County. Marker can be reached from Sinker Road. Touch for map. The marker is mounted on a boulder in main parking lot of Canyon County's Celebration Park. Celebration Park is on the Snake River, near Melba and south of Nampa, Idaho.

Heading west on I-84 take the Meridian/Kuna exit. Turn left onto S Meridian Rd. Continue onto E Avalon. Turn left onto Swan Falls Rd. Turn right onto Victory Ln. Continue onto Warren Spur Rd. Turn left onto Sinker Rd. Turn left at Historic Guffey Railroad Bridge. Marker is in this post office area: Melba ID 83641, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 3 other markers are within 13 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Steamer "Shoshone" (approx. 5 miles away); Givens Springs (approx. 12.3 miles away); Givens Hot Springs (approx. 12.3 miles away).
 
Also see . . .  Boise, Nampa, and Owyhee Railroad.
Large-scale lode mining at Silver City created a serious need for rail transportation to come closer than Nampa, so
Guffey Bridge image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, June 23, 2013
3. Guffey Bridge
Wide view of Guffey Bridge, looking west from Celebration Park along the Snake River.
as soon as a severe national economic depression (Panic of 1893) no longer paralyzed eastern capital investors, William H. Dewey managed to get J. M. Guffey of Pittsburgh to join other investors there in funding a line headed that direction. Reaching Silver City was totally impractical, because any such line would have to climb almost a vertical mile above Snake River. But construction to a point below that steep ascent clearly could succeed. Guffey and his associates managed to fund Dewey's project in 1896, so construction began in Nampa that September. Its primary feature, built a year later, was a 500 foot, two span bridge across Snake River. (Submitted on April 30, 2014, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.) 
 
Categories. Bridges & ViaductsIndustry & CommerceMan-Made FeaturesRailroads & Streetcars
 
Guffey Bridge (<i>close view</i>) image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, June 23, 2013
4. Guffey Bridge (close view)
Guffey Bridge (<i>pedestrian walkway</i>) image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, June 23, 2013
5. Guffey Bridge (pedestrian walkway)
Guffey Bridge (<i>Guffey Island view</i>) image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, June 23, 2013
6. Guffey Bridge (Guffey Island view)
Guffey Bridge (<i>Celebration Park Sign</i>) image. Click for full size.
By Cosmos Mariner, June 23, 2013
7. Guffey Bridge (Celebration Park Sign)
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on April 30, 2014, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. This page has been viewed 748 times since then and 105 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on April 30, 2014, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.   3, 4, 5, 6, 7. submitted on May 1, 2014, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. • Bill Pfingsten was the editor who published this page.
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