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.

December 11, 2006: Unbuilding the Pearman supports

The worksite - felled columns to be unbuilt. Carlos in the foreground and Robbie in the cutting position


What Cashman-Testa buildeth can be unbuildeth. Here, Stan, Robbie and Carlos are looking upward and in deep thought


and Manny in the ready position


Like felled trees, here are the supports for Robbie to unbuild.


Robbie starting another cut


and cutting


From the roof of the parking garage - this is the scene


Then on to the Mt Pleasant worksite - a drive-by view of a lonely Grace


A view of the port from the observation pier - soon to be enjoyed by everyone


Here is a completed section of the rebar grid - ready for the Bidwell pouring machine


A crane crossing


and a view under cousin Arthur's structure


and an evening sunset


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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons License.

C. Frank Starmer