1972 & 2002 - Dames Point Bridge Flying High Over Mossy River Oak Trees
by J. R. Beatty
The broad river and the two tower, steel cables suspension bridge are used for commercial and recreational purposes. (Click on photo to see details like the speed boat fishing on the river)
Without the wisdom and kindness of the Chief Engineer at my job interview, I might have been employed in JAX there, worked for a few years, and have gone down with the nuclear barges!
Instead, I drove on down to Miami, FL (my wife's family home) to be employed by Florida Power & Light for 21-1/2 years! It was a blessing provided by God's Providential Hand!
A cruise line ship, the "Miracle" was the first such ship to go under the bridge. I personally investigated both ship and bridge heights and their separation dimension. The top of the ship smoke stack was only a few feet lower than the 275 foot tall clearance height at the middle of the bridge! My math was right. "Miraculously" the ship just made it under the bridge!
It also shows the strength and longevity of the shady, old oak trees along the river's shore - including the grey, hanging-on-tree-limb, non-parasitic, epiphyte air plants, a.k.a. Spanish Moss. This moss is found over much of the Sunshine State.
But be sure to watch out for the Red Bugs a.k.a. "Chiggers" in the moss that has fallen to the ground! As a young friend of mine once said in crying pain back in the day, "Those bugs can BITE hard - down there!"
Oh, the Agonizing Humanity!