I have had a fascination with trains since I was a small child. I believe it all started back when
we lived in a house just a
few feet of a railroad track. One of the things that made that special (not counting the train noise and vibrations) was that
my Uncle Cecil had a small store just across the tracks and I could go over there and get goodies. So much for memories, let
me get back on "track" here with our visit.
The Old Railroad Bridge has not been used for transportation purposes for decades, but a local group has maintained the structure as a pedestrian bridge. It offers a beautiful view of the Tennessee River on Pickwick Lake.
On the west side of the bridge you get a magnificent view of the high cliffs of the river with the O'Neal Bridge in foreground. On the east side, you can look up river and see the Wilson Dam with its spillways.
The bridge dates back to 1839 and was originally used as a toll bridge for trains, wagons, and livestock traveling between Colbert and Lauderdale counties.
The bottom section of the bridge is a wooden-plank roadway, somewhat narrow in today's standards, used for auto and pedestrian traffic. My brother, Jimmy, told me he remembered going across the bridge as a kid. He said it was pretty dramatic for a five year old.
This is another case of not knowing what to expect. But, if I had not seen anything else on this trip, it would have been worth the drive.
Old Railroad Bridge
Sheffield, AL 35660