Lost and Found features brief profiles of historic landmarks and structures, one lost and one saved.

Lost

Since its erection, first in iron in 1882 and then in steel in 1900, the Kinzua Viaduct, one of the most popular attractions along Route 6, has been hailed as “The Eighth Wonder of the World,” des­ignated a national landmark, and treasured as the centerpiece of the Kinzua Bridge State Park in McKean County. The bridge, tow­ering three hundred feet in height and spanning more than two thou­sand feet, was built for the New York, Lake Erie, and Western Rail­road and Coal Company. In July 2003, a tornado toppled eleven of the viaduct’s twenty support columns. The devastation has gal­vanized support for the restoration of the span, and readers interested in helping are encouraged to write: Kinzua Bridge Project, Pennsylva­nia Parks and Forests Foundation, P.O. Box 499, State College, PA 16804-0499; or visit the Pennsylva­nia Parks and Forests Foundation website.

 

Found

The gorges and deep valleys of Pennsylvania’s northern tier necessitated railroads to construct viaducts to transport goods, chief among them anthracite and lumber, to market. Opened in 1915 by the Erie-Lack­awanna Railroad (renamed the Delaware, Lackawanna and West­ern Railroad), the Tunkhannock Viaduct at Nicholson, Wyoming County, stands nearly two hun­dred and fifty feet above the val­ley floor and measures nearly twenty-four hundred feet in length. It is the largest reinforced concrete structure of its kind in the world. Sightseers from throughout the world take to Route 6, the Grand Army of the Republic Highway, to see this structural masterpiece for them­selves. The Tunkhannock Viaduct is still in use, nearly ninety years after its construction.