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November 18, 1992

A Bridge Too Soon

Author Affiliations

University of Cincinnati (Ohio) Medical Center

JAMA. 1992;268(19):2652. doi:10.1001/jama.1992.03490190052028

To the Editor.  —I would like to correct a comment made in the February 19,1992, cover story. Dr Southgate1 stated that the Brooklyn Bridge "was also the first suspension bridge in history to use steel wire for cables and steel for the structure suspended from the cables."The Roebling Bridge, across the Ohio River, connecting Cincinnati, Ohio, and Covington, Ky, was a prototype for the Brooklyn Bridge. It was built to the specifications of architect John Roebling and completed in 1865. Its steel wires and structures support me each day as I drive to work. I believe it to be the first suspension bridge of its type.2 Ernest Lawson's painting Brooklyn Bridge captures a presence that was presaged by and still echoes in the Roebling Bridge.Dr Schaffner is correct in that the Brooklyn Bridge was not the first suspension bridge to use steel in its structure and