The State Road 42 bridge near Poland, Indiana

After I finished my State Road 67 road trip, I took the long way home, following whatever highway felt good. I came upon State Road 42, which I explored on a 2008 road trip. It had been ages since I’d driven any of it, so I turned onto it and headed east. Before long I came upon the 1937 Parker through truss bridge over the Eel River near the tiny town of Poland.

Poland Bridge
Poland Bridge
Poland Bridge

Naturally, I stopped to photograph this bridge in 2008 as well. I was driving the other direction, so my photos are from the other end.

Steel truss bridge near Poland, IN
Steel truss bridge near Poland, IN

As you can see, the bridge got a new coat of baby blue paint since 2008. That happened in 2016 along with a general rehabilitation. In 2010, the bridge was closed for a while because it needed emergency repairs, which may have triggered the rehab.

A similar Parker through truss bridge 17½ miles east of here was repaired in 2022 after being severely damaged in a crash.

Truss bridges have steadily disappeared from Indiana’s highways and the pace is not relenting. I feel sure that one thing that helps preserve the two SR 42 truss bridges is that it parallels both US 40 and I-70 between Terre Haute and Indianapolis (although SR 42 terminates in Mooresville, a city just southwest of Indianapolis). As such, SR 42 mostly serves to connect the small towns on it. It is a narrow highway by modern standards, and gets relatively little traffic.

To see more from my 2008 trip along all of State Road 42, go here.

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3 responses to “The State Road 42 bridge near Poland, Indiana”

  1. Suzassippi Avatar

    I love these old Parker through truss bridges. They were just ubiquitous in the part of Texas where we lived and I probably photographed all of them.

    1. Jim Grey Avatar

      Me too! INDOT saves some, tears down others. Lots have disappeared in the years I’ve been documenting bridges.

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