James Cooper

James Cooper, in April 2001, wrote:

“Fellow Pontists

A lot of comment has come my way over the last half year about the potential deficiencies of old bridge pins. I have a simple empirical query on this subject. What examples do any of you know about of pins that have failed in service?

Shalom! Jim”

This email was sent to a small group of bridge preservationists, one of whom had asked: do you replace the original with new. James Cooper (1934 – 2021), historian and author of two books on historic bridges, was responding to a question posed by a member of this group, which would later evolve into Eric DeLony’s Pontists’ Historic Bridge Forum. Jim recognized the value of preserving the unwritten words of craftsmen within the original members of a historic bridge, and he often worked as a volunteer to preserve this record and give voice to those who spoke in metal. Jim Cooper was a craftsman, and those who received an email from Jim will recognize his parting salutation, followed by several spaces and his name. “Shalom! Jim”

Keeping Faith with the Makers (as Jim would say),

Vern Mesler, 2021

Posted in
Historic Bridge Restoration

Historic Bridge Restoration