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Rosalia Railroad Bridge

In 1915, the Chicago, Milwaukee, and St. Paul Railroad completed a reinforced concrete arch viaduct. The viaduct replaced a temporary 2,177-foot frame trestle that was expeditiously erected in 1907 by the railroad to complete its transcontinental line across the state of Washington rapidly. A contemporary article in the Railway Age Gazette observed that a concrete design was selected for the permanent structure because “the site was one where considerations of appearance had to be taken somewhat into account, as the structure would be seen from the two other railways and a county highway.” Whatever the reasons for the design, the results of the engineer’s emphasis on the “considerations of appearance” was indeed impressive. The monumental proportions of the structure seem to be magnified by the rolling, expansive Palouse Valley which is framed by the concrete arch forms.