From a photograph by Solomon D. Butcher of four daughters of rancher Joseph M. Chrisman, at their sod house in Custer County, Nebraska. From left to right, Harriet, Elizabeth, Lucie, and Ruth. Photographed in 1886.

Showing posts with label Land Between The Lakes. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Land Between The Lakes. Show all posts

Wednesday, September 08, 2010

Eggner Ferry Bridge Repairs

In its final years

Eggner Ferry Bridge
Workmen were repairing one of the approaches to Eggner Ferry Bridge the last time I crossed Kentucky Lake. I found myself sitting on top of the bridge with twenty other cars, waiting to snake through the work zone. While I was parked in that unusual place, I took these photos of the bridge suspension from my car window.

Eggner Ferry Bridge is named for the Eggner Ferry that crossed the Tennessee River at that location for many years. The ferry ceased operation when this bridge was built across the river in 1932. In the early 1940s, the bridge was raised and extended before the Tennessee river was dammed* and Kentucky Lake was formed.

Eggner Ferry Bridge
We are now in 2010, and the Eggner River Bridge is far too narrow for the volume of traffic it sees.   A new 4-lane bridge is supposed to be completed by 2017. Highway 68/80 through Land Between the Lakes (LBL) is being made 4-lane, and a 4-lane bridge will be built over Lake Barkley on the east side of LBL.

In the meantime, the existing bridges must be repaired as necessary to keep them safe. These last few years are going to be especially rough on them because of all the heavy trucks bringing materials for the road and bridge construction.

I got these photos ready to post a couple of weeks ago, and now I see that I misspelled "Eggner" when I labeled them. They will have to stay that way for now. I've been having computer problems, and with the setup I'm using currently, I don't have much for photo-editing software to correct my error.  Like the bridges, my computers need some repair, maintenance, and eventual replacement!


* Kentucky Dam on the Tennessee River and Barkley Dam on the Cumberland River are just two of many dams that were built by the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) during the 1930s and 1940s.

When Kentucky Dam and Barkley Dam were built, hundreds of families were relocated from the Tennessee River valley, the Cumberland River valley, and the Land Between the Rivers near the Kentucky/Tennessee border and northward. Hundreds of homes and buildings were torn down. Cemeteries were moved to high ground. The "Land Between The Rivers" became the "Land Between The Lakes" under TVA control. Much of the two lakes' outer shore lines was put under state control.

Old Bridges at Land Between the Lakes, KY
A Very Windy Day!

Kentucky Lake seen from Eggner Ferry Bridge

Monday, August 23, 2010

A Trip to Patti's 1880's Settlement

Porkchop and pie highly recommended

On the porch of one the Patti's 1880's Settlement shops

I was supposed to go up in a hot-air balloon last Friday with my 84-year-old neighbor Miss M. and her daughter Sally. This was going to be a birthday celebration for Miss M. However, because of the very hot weather, the balloon ride is postponed until October. We went to Patti's 1880's Settlement at Grand Rivers (KY) for a birthday lunch, instead.

Grand Rivers is located just north of Land Between the Lakes and just below the dam that creates Lake Barkeley. Patti's 1880's Settlement is a restaurant and more. The Settlement includes a half-dozen  log-cabin gift shops, set into a nicely landscaped garden under tall trees. In keeping with the 1880's theme, all the employees who serve the public in the Settlement wear 1880's garb. And beyond Patti's, the village of Grand Rivers has more shops where a tourist can buy antiques, gifts, and souvenirs.

Patti's 1880's Settlement has such good food that it has even been featured in Southern Living magazine. My son has been to Patti's a time or two, and I've heard plenty of talk about the place, but this was my first visit. My lady friends were aghast at my lack of experience in fine dining -- but that's not new. They're always shocked at the restaurants I haven't visited. They enjoy educating me.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Philander Hinckley and the Harleys

A nice drive through the Tennessee hills

On Sunday, Dennis and I drove down to Cedar Grove, Tennessee -- a little unincorporated settlement in Carroll County, Tennessee. All the dogwood and redbud trees are blooming right now. It was a perfect spring day for a drive through the hills.

One of Dennis's great-grandfathers is buried somewhere around Cedar Grove. Sometime this summer, Dennis is planning to camp in the Natchez Trace State Park which is in the same general vicinity. He's going to spend a few days trying to locate the cemetery. He'll go to Huntingdon, the Carroll County seat, and inquire at the library first. Maybe they have a book of names for the cemeteries in the county.

This great grandfather, Philander Hinckley, was a Civil War veteran. He served with a regiment from Wisconsin. During his three year enlistment, he was shot in the leg and he was injured in a fall. Due to chronic diarrhea, he also developed piles. After he passed away, his widow received a pension of 50¢ per month, based on his service.

We know these things and more from the research that a cousin of Dennis's mother did. Dennis and I were particularly surprised to learn that Philander and his second wife Lizzie were married in Hickory County, Missouri. We were married in the same county, nearly 100 years later.

Motorcycles 1As we drove to Cedar Grove and back, we saw hundreds of motorcycles. At a gas station at the south end of Land Between the Lakes, several groups of bikers were taking a break. My son Isaac would have ridiculed the luxe Harley Davidsons the older guys were riding (photo below). He prefers a simpler bike, like the ones the young guys were riding (photo at right).

Motorcycles 2

Friday, April 04, 2008

A Pleasant Spring Afternoon

Not enough time to enjoy it all!


Bradford pearI made a quick trip to Murray one afternoon this week to take a big load of boxes to Keely. She got the lab job in Hopkinsville that she wanted, and she will start on Monday. Meanwhile, she's packing.

It was an absolutely beautiful day and I enjoyed the drive immensely. I was surprised that the redbuds are beginning to bloom already. The Bradford pears are all blooming too, and they are gorgeous. I do understand why people want to plant them, even though they are so vulnerable to weather damage.

When I crossed the bridge at Canton, I noticed that the waterbirds (whatever kind they are) are already nesting on their little platforms in the middle of the lake. Boat and automobile traffic doesn't seem to bother them. Maybe they'd prefer a rotted-out stub of a tree standing in the water, but they willingly accept a man-made substitute.

Backwaters at LBLThis photo (right) was taken about a mile from the Canton bridge, across the road from the Devil's Elbow area, looking northeast. The water level in the lakes is high, due to recent heavy rains, and water has backed into many low areas like this one.

Caldwell County, KY, courthouse At Murray, I snapped a shot of the Caldwell County Courthouse through my car window as I waited at the stoplight. The monument in the corner of the grounds is a memorial to Confederate soldiers. I suppose Murray sent quite a few soldiers to the battle at Fort Donelson.

WildflowersKeely and I did a little shopping after we unloaded the boxes. On the way to the store, we saw a pretty yard where hundreds of little wildflowers are blooming. The little violet at the top of this post was one of them. Some were not violets, but I don't know their name.

I stopped at the Canton landing, east of Lake Barkley, as I was coming home (photo below.) Several people were fishing from the docks and boat ramps. Along the water's edge, ducks were swimming between the tree trunks and bobbing down to grab minnows and bugs.

I had wished I could spend more time in Murray. Then I wanted to spend more time watching the ducks and enjoying the lake and the woods, but I hurried on. As it turned out, if I'd lingered even a minute longer, I might have missed the photo opportunity with the deer. It's interesting how that all worked out.

Lake Barkley at Canton KY

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Old Bridges at Land Between the Lakes, KY

Eggner's Ferry Bridge and Lawrence Memorial Bridge

The Eggner's Ferry Bridge on August 11, 2007

The Eggner's Ferry Bridge (pictured above) crosses the Tennessee River at Fenton, on the west side of Kentucky's Land Between the Lakes. The Lawrence Memorial Bridge crosses the Cumberland River at Canton, on the east side of Land Between the Lakes.

Both these long bridges were built in the early 1930s, before the rivers were dammed and the lakes were formed. Before Kentucky Lake was filled in 1944, Eggner's Ferry Bridge underwent modifications. According to, new pilings were built and the bridge was raised in 1943. The Lawrence Memorial Bridge underwent a similar procedure in preparation for the damming of the Cumberland River and the filling of Lake Barkley (which took place in the 1960s) .

Highway 68/80, the road on which these bridges lie, has become a major, well-traveled, east-west route through southern Kentucky. Most of the road is now 4-lane. Land Between the Lakes is a popular recreation spot for both tourists and residents, and many of these bridge-crossers are towing campers or boats behind them. All in all, a lot of traffic pours across these bridges every day.

The two bridges were declared functionally obsolete in their last inspection. They are scheduled to be replaced within the next decade, and that will be a good thing for the motorists who must cross them. The bridges are too narrow for modern traffic. It's not uncommon to hear of someone whose rear-view mirror was knocked off while crossing these bridges.

The new bridges will have 4-lanes with shoulders and an additional lane for foot and bicycle traffic. They will cost an unbelievable $80 to 100 million each. Highway 68/80 will also be made 4-lane through Land Between the Lakes. The project is still in its design phase. Construction won't start until 2008 or 2009, and it will take several years to complete.

School buses from Christian County are not allowed to cross the Lawrence Memorial or Eggner's Ferry bridges. When our high school teams play Murray (west of Land Between the Lakes), they travel about fifty miles farther so the buses can cross the rivers on I-24's wider, safer bridges.

Eggner's Ferry history

The Eggner's Ferry Bridge over the Tennessee River is named for the ferry that was there for many years before the bridge was built. The ferry was established by Milton Eggner, (who also ran a stagecoach business and had a mail-carrying contract) in the 1850s.

During the Civil War, Brig. Gen. Lloyd Tilghman mentioned Eggner's Ferry in a dispatch that warned of Union forces on the road to Murray. According to a listing of tavern licenses, in 1865, both Wm. Price and O. Walsdrop posted bonds and were licensed to operate a tavern at Eggner's Ferry. It is not clear if they operated the same tavern or different ones.

Eggner's Ferry is mentioned as an address in the 1924 obituary of Mr. Temolean ("Mollie" Leneave. An image of the Eggner Ferry when operated by John L. Jackson has been posted at Webshots by a Trigg county resident. Mr. Charles Hill Bradley, mentioned in a 1931 book of Calloway County biographies, owned an interest in the Eggner ferry and store. He may have been one of the last owners, because the bridge was built in 1932.

Read more:
"Bridge forum draws crowd", Murray Ledger

Updated 1/29/2012
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

CONTENTMENT: Keep your heart free from hate, your mind from worry, live simply, expect little, give much, sing often, pray always, forget self, think of others and their feelings, fill your heart with love, scatter sunshine. These are the tried links in the golden chain of contentment.
(Author unknown)

IT IS STILL BEST to be honest and truthful; to make the most of what we have; to be happy with simple pleasure; and to be cheerful and have courage when things go wrong.
(Laura Ingalls Wilder, 1867-1957)

Thanks for reading.