While wooden trestle bridges were numerous in Brunswick County, the Meherrin River Bridge was one of a few truss bridges on the A&D between Pinners Point (at Portsmouth) and Danville. Built in 1893, the 150-feet long, through truss pin-connected span was supported by two steel towers secured into concrete block footings.
Almost forty years later, to permit the operation of heavier steam locomotives, the Southern Railway installed new timber structural reinforcement called falsework. However, the timber falsework created a problem. Whenever the river rose there was the danger of the new falsework washing out and breaking the line. ln response, bridge gangs were sent by the railroad to keep it free of drift. In 1939 the problem was resolved when the Meherrin River Bridge was renewed with a new heavier truss and concrete piers as seen in the 1948 photo.
The new prefabricated bridge span for the Tobacco Heritage Trail is supported by the 1939-installed piers.
Steam locomotive 575 on the A&D line between West Norfolk and Suffolk H. Reid
Railroad Trestle Bridge over Roses Creek, Lawrenceville
Pleasant Grove Rd. Bridge over the A&D in Charlie Hope William E. Griffin, Jr.
Meherrin River Bridge, 1948William E. Griffin, Jr.
Upper view of Railroad Trestle Bridge in Lawrenceville