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John A. Weeks III
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Highways, Byways, And Bridge Photography

Minnesota Named Bridges

A Photo Tour Of Highway Guide Signs
For Named Bridges Within Minnesota


While the state of Minnesota has had a long tradition of naming highways after famous residents whose lives have made a lasting impact, the state has named very few of its bridges. In fact, the state has only ten bridges named through acts of the state legislature, with more than half of these names being established recently in the 1990s and 2000s. Several bridges are marked with square guide signs, a few with elaborate monuments, and the remainder are not marked at the bridge site. This page is a photo tour of the named bridges that I have photographed so far.

•  Betty Adkins Bridge
•  Biauswah Bridge
•  Bridge Of Hope
•  Eisenhower Memorial Bridge
•  Old Saint Anne's Pass
•  Jim Oberstar Causeway
•  William Sandberg Memorial Bridge
•  Veterans Memorial Bridge (Mankato)
•  Veterans Memorial Bridge (Moorhead)
•  Bradley Waage Memorial Bridge

Each bridge and their marker signs are shown below. As of June, 2010, I have visited each of these bridges and have photographed their marker sign. If any new bridges are officially named, I will add them to this list.


Betty Adkins Bridge Sign   Betty Adkins Bridge
MN-101 — Elk River

The MN-101 bridge over the Mississippi River is named in honor of Betty Adkins, who served 12 years in the Minnesota state legislature. Adkins was known for overcoming a number of setbacks and tragedy in her life. This bridge was built as a single span, and a twin span was added a decade later.

Betty Adkins Bridge

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Biauswah Bridge Sign   Biauswah Bridge
MN-23 — Duluth

The Biauswah Bridge is named after two Ojibwa warriors, a father and a son. The father traded his life to save his son who was captured by a Fox band, and later the son drove the Fox people out of Minnesota. The bridge is named to honor all Native Americans who have served in the US military.

Biauswah Bridge

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Bridge Of Hope Sign   Bridge Of Hope
MN-15 — Sauk Rapids

The MN-15 Bridge of Hope, spanning the Mississippi River, was named by local school children to remember Jacob Wetterling, who was kidnapped on the evening of October 22, 1989. No trace of Jacob has ever been found.

Bridge Of Hope

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Eisenhower Memorial Bridge Sign   Eisenhower Memorial Bridge
US-63 — Red Wing

The main channel bridge over the Mississippi River at Red Wing is named in honor of our 34th President, Dwight David Eisenhower. The President spoke at the bridge dedication, an event that drew a crowd of 20,000 people.

Eisenhower Memorial Bridge

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Old Saint Anne's Pass Sign   Old Saint Anne's Pass
MN-55 — Watkins

This railroad overpass was named in honor of the Old Saint Anne's Church, which once existed a short distance from the Soo Line Railroad right-of-way. The church and its members cared for a group of Chinese railroad workers who had fallen ill with tuberculosis and were abandoned by the railroad owners.

Old Saint Anne's Pass

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Jim Oberstar Causeway Sign   Jim Oberstar Causeway
US-169 — Grand Rapids

The Jim Oberstar Causeway on US-169 across Lake Pokegama is named after Congressman James ‘Jim’ Oberstar. Oberstar was born on the Iron Range, and has served in office since 1975. As chairman of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, he was instrumental in the legislation that lead to the quick replacement of the I-35W bridge.

Jim Oberstar Causeway

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William Sandberg Memorial Bridge Sign   William Sandberg Memorial Bridge
MN-36 — North Saint Paul

The William Sandberg Memorial Bridge carries Margaret Street over MN-36 in North Saint Paul. The bridge is named in honor of William Sandberg, known locally as ‘Mayor Bill’, who served as mayor of the city for 30 years.

William Sandberg Memorial Bridge

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Veterans Memorial Bridge Sign   Veterans Memorial Bridge
US-169 — Mankato

This bridge over the Minnesota river in Mankato is one of two bridges officially named in honor of military veterans by the state legislature. The span carries Belgrade Avenue and Mulberry Street over the river, a regional trail, two railroad tracks, a 6-lane divided city street, and a parking lot.

Veterans Memorial Bridge - Mankato

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Veterans Memorial Bridge Sign   Veterans Memorial Bridge
US-10 — Moorhead

The other Veterans Memorial Bridge, spanning the Red River of the North between Fargo, North Dakota and Moorhead, Minnesota, carries US-10 and Main Avenue across the state line. This bridge is really dressed up. It has, by far, more decorative elements than any other bridge in Minnesota.

Veterans Memorial Bridge - Moorhead

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Bradley Waage Memorial Bridge Sign   Bradley Waage Memorial Bridge
MN-6 — Outing

This bridge over Roosevelt Lake on highway MN-6 in the little town of Outing, Minnesota, is named for Bradley ‘Brainerd Brad’ Waage, who was a long time highway inspector for MN-DOT.

Bradley Waage Memorial Bridge

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Authored by John A. Weeks III, Copyright © 1996—2016, all rights reserved.
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