Little Sandy River Bridges (Chesapeake & Ohio Railroad)

The Chesapeake & Ohio Railroad Lexington Subdivision features two abandoned bridges over the Little Sandy River in Carter County, Kentucky.

The Pratt through trusses were built circa 1881 by the Newport News & Mississippi Valley Railroad (NN&MV). In February 1892, the NN&MV was formally consolidated into the Chesapeake & Ohio Railroad as its Lexington Subdivision.

Local traffic on the line began declining in the middle of the 20th century when the early coal mines were exhausted. Most of the brick kilns and their associated clay pits, such as the Kentucky Fire Brick CompanyLee Clay Products and Olive Hill Fire Brick Company, were closed by the 1970’s. Owing to little mine and industrial traffic, the Chessie System, the C&O successor, abandoned the railroad between Rush and Lexington in June 1985. Some of the bridges, especially through Carter County, were repurposed for automobiles.

Two of the bridges were closed to traffic in April 2015 due to a deteriorating bridge deck.