Unbuilding the Grace and Pearman Bridges

For Sparky and myself, curiosity drives passion which in turn fuels our life's engine. Our passion was capturing the story of both unbuilding the Grace (1929 - 2007) and Pearman (1966 - 2007) Bridges and discovering the unbuilders. It takes a lot of passion to track a project from July 2005 until April 2007 - rain, shine, hurricanes or moving to Singapore. We discovered the joy of discovery learning. Ken Canty opened the front door for us - then Steve Testa, Ponch Billingsley and Mickey Rogers opened many side doors. Below are the highlights of what we discovered, who we met and what we learned.

And a reminder from T.S. Eliot (East Coker from the Four Quartets)

Home is where one starts from. As we grow older
The world becomes stranger, the pattern more complicated
Of dead and living. Not the intense moment
Isolated, with no before and after,
But a lifetime burning in every moment
And not the lifetime of one man only
But of old stones that cannot be deciphered.

April 18, 2006:
Ironworker Acrobats

The Grace worksite

and from the Mt. Pleasant side - with Mickey's guys on the left (Pearman) and our ironworker acrobats on the right (Grace)

Cutting a segment

Cutting the beams that hold the vertical segment in place

more acrobatics

an overview - Manny's crane in place stabilizing the vertical section and our acrobats doing their thing (burning and performing)

Burning through the left side plate

another view

cutting a top member

another view of the overall relationship of the support cable, the crane boom and the acrobats

burning on the right side. Now watch Manny lift and place the section on the barge

Midway down

and on the barge

Setting up for the next section

Tieing the support cables into place

and another burn, lift and place repetition

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons License.

C. Frank Starmer