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Rogue River (Isaac Lee Patterson) Bridge

Rogue With High Standards

Rogue River Bridge, the first of Conde B. McCullough’s six major Oregon coast bridge masterpieces, connects the towns of Gold Beach and Wedderburn. It remains today one of the most distinguished, photographed, and beautiful spans in the Northwest. When opened for traffic in 1931, it became the first bridge to cross a major coastal waterway, and the state’s largest and most expensive span.1 The Rogue embodies many features that epitomize the McCullough style: a series of broad, graceful arches constructed of reinforced concrete; smaller arches used as counterpoints; and decorative features such as Art Deco entrance pylons, arch railing supports, and ornate detailing.

Historic view of the Rogue River Bridge, 1932.

Historic view of the Rogue River Bridge, 1932.

By featuring one of the most ancient, appealing, and durable architectural forms, the arch, McCullough’s design emphasized tradition, beauty, and stability, qualities intended to boost the confidence of the people who lived in and visited Oregon’s coastal communities during the Great Depression of the 1930s.