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.

February 1, 2007: Fog and Rain in Charleston

It was one of those dark and dreary and rainy days. Ellen was driving up from Plant City and Sparky was checking up on the worksite.

Leaving home and driving across the Ravenel Bridge.


The memory of Freyssinet pulling the last strand of a stay cable almost 2 years ago is still a vivid


All too vivid a memory. Want to return to that day? Compare the weather. Oliver and his team were erecting a stay pipe. Click here to do a bit of time travel back 2 years


The worksite - boats restored to their homes on the left, the lone Grace pier in the background and mud inbetween. feb_01_sparky_011_worksite.jpg

From the Sea Breeze pier


A view of the fog-wrapped Ravenel Bridge


And back home to Teasie


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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons License.

C. Frank Starmer