Scenic USA - North Dakota
Valley City SU Footbridge
|Photos by Ben Prepelka
Scenic USA Artist Website
Meandering through rolling hills and open prairies of North Dakota, the Sheyenne River flows through the state for 280 miles. During the 1800s it was difficult for eastern North Dakotans to cross the Sheyenne River, one of the main waterways of the state.
Valley City grew up around the Sheyenne and was often referred to as the gateway to the Sheyenne Valley. Early residents had to rely on Morrison's Ford, the only place to cross the river. Once considered as a site for the state's capitol, Valley City began to address the need of permanent bridges to cross its winding river in 1892.
Known as the city of bridges today, eight bridges make up a scenic bridge tour. Pictured here is the Valley City State University footbridge, a wooden planked suspension bridge. First built in 1901, the ornate footbridge is one of the most attractive on the tour. Nearing the century mark, the accidently damaged 150 foot bridge was rebuilt in 1992. Valley City State University, founded in 1890, is known for its laptop initiative, one of the first colleges in the country to require students and instructors to use notebook computers.
Two of the city's eight bridges, the Rainbow Bridge and West City Bridge, were placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1997. The Highline Bridge, one of the longest and highest railroad bridges in America, stretches across the Sheyenne River for 3860 feet.
Bridge Tour Map
Additional Points of Interest
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