North Chester Village Bridge, Spanning Westfield River on Smith Road, Chester, Hampden County, MA
Photo Caption Pages
Spanning Westfield River on Smith Road, Chester, MA
Find maps of Chester, MA
Documentation compiled after 1968.
Survey number HAER MA-97
Unprocessed field note material exists for this structure (FN-16).
Building/structure dates: 1887 initial construction
Significance: The North Chester Village Bridge is a relatively unusual example of a Pratt pony truss, with a combination of pinned and riveted connections. The R.F. Hawkins Iron Works, a regionally-significant bridge builder, erected this 55-foot span during the period of transition from pinned to riveted joints. The North Chester Village Bridge is the oldest of three surviving iron truss bridges in the town of Chester. It is also the second-oldest of twenty known R.F. Hawkins' iron highway bridges in Massachusetts, under Massachusetts Department of Public Works purview. Located in an isolated rural village, the bridges shows few signs of alteration and is in excellent condition.
R.F. Hawkins Iron Works
Historic American Engineering Record (Library of Congress)
2. Detail of north truss, showing truss configuration and connection to floor beams
3. Detail of north railing, showing latticework and iron endpost, looking northeast
4. Oblique view of south truss from west portal
6. Detail of south truss, showing latticework
7. Detail of south truss, showing connection with large hex nuts (correspond in location to round nuts in MA-97-8)
8. Detail of north truss, showing connection with large round nuts (correspond in location to hex nuts in MA-97-7)
Back to Chester, Massachusetts