Thursday, February 22, 2024 About Us Contact Us Terms of Service Copyright Privacy
 

Rare Photos of the Golden Gate Bridge Under Construction

Samantha Franco
Photo Credit: Bettmann / Getty Images
Photo Credit: Bettmann / Getty Images

The Golden Gate Bridge: a suspension bridge connecting San Francisco to Marin County. Construction began in 1933 and carried on for four years before the massive structure was completed in 1937. Take a look at the construction process of this great landmark, as thankfully photographers took photos during the entire project.

Breaking ground on the South tower

A man stands by a car at a construction site for the building of the Golden Gate Bridge.
A man on the trestle to the South Tower during the beginning of the construction of the Golden Gate Bridge, August 1933. (Photo Credit: Underwood Archives / Getty Images)

The Golden Gate Bridge is composed of two main towers, the South, which is closer to San Francisco, and the Marin, which is closer to Marin County. Here, a man stands with his car at what is the beginning of construction on the South tower.

Work starts on the Marin tower

Aerial view of the Marin Tower of the Golden Gate Bridge under construction.
The Marin Tower of the Golden Gate Bridge, June 7, 1934. (Photo Credit: Underwood Archives / Getty Images)

Here is a good look at what the construction on the main towers looked like. Rising straight up from the ground, the Marin tower, (and the not-pictured South tower) will serve as the structural supports for the suspension bridge.

The Marin tower nears completion

Aerial view of the nearly completed Marin Tower of the Golden Gate Bridge.
The Marin Tower of the Golden Gate Bridge, 1934. (Photo Credit: Underwood Archives / Getty Images)

As their construction is completed, the Marin and South towers stand at a whopping 746 feet tall. Now that the vertical supports are in place and completed, the next step of completing the bridge can begin.

Stringing the cables

A man stands on the cables of the Golden Gate Bridge during its construction.
The Golden Gate Bridge, 1935. (Photo Credit: Underwood Archives / Getty Images)

A construction worker stands at the top of one of the main towers, balancing on some of the first cables to be strung between them. The cables help to divert the tension of the bridge toward the main towers.

Starting on the catwalk

Construction workers working on the catwalk of the Golden Gate Bridge.
(Original Caption) Catwalk start on the Golden Gate Bridge. (Photo Credit: George Rinhart / Corbis / Getty Images)

Once the cables are in place, construction workers can then start on the catwalk. The catwalk is a narrow walkway that provides workers with access to various parts of the bridge for construction, maintenance, and inspection.

What a view

Workers building a catwalk on the Golden Gate Bridge, view of the unfinished bridge behind them.
Workers build a catwalk that connects the towers on the Golden Gate Bridge. (Photo Credit: Bettmann / Getty Images)

As the workers build the catwalk, they are given some pretty incredible views, including this one.

The chains are laid

View of the chains and cables of the Golden Gate Bridge as well as a tower.
Chains laid on the cables of the Golden Gate Bridge, 1935. (Photo Credit: Touring Club Italiano / Marka / Universal Images Group / Getty Images)

Chains are laid between the cables of the bridge so that workers may transport materials to and from various sections of the bridge.

Sending supplies down the lines

Construction workers building the catwalk of the Golden Gate Bridge.
Side view of construction workers building the catwalk of the Golden Gate Bridge. (Photo Credit: George Rinhart / Corbis / Getty Images)

You’d have to have a pretty steel stomach to walk materials across the chain walkway that high in the sky – this is certainly not a job for the faint of heart.

Entryway is coming along finely

Construction on the entrance ramp of the Golden Gate Bridge.
View of Golden Gate entryway under construction. (Photo Credit: Hulton Archive / Getty Images)

With the towers finished and the cables between them linked, construction on the entryways to the bridge can begin.

Just missing the road

The Golden Gate Bridge under construction, seen from far away between two trees.
The Golden Gate Bridge, 1936. (Photo by AFP) (Photo Credit: AFP / Getty Images)

Onlookers from afar can easily take note of the bridge’s progress. From this view, it is easy to see that all that’s really missing from the Golden Gate Bridge is its road!

Speaking of the road

The road of the Golden Gate Bridge suspended before being placed during its construction.
The roadbed of the Golden Gate Bridge being suspended from the cables, October 16, 1936. (Photo Credit: Underwood Archives / Getty Images)

Building the road of the bridge is probably one of the most interesting parts of bridge development. First, vertical cables must be dropped from the main cables. Then, the steel road deck can be laid down. (Bridge maintenance several years later saw the laying of two inches of epoxy asphalt over the steel road).

The bridge is complete

View from below the Golden Gate Bridge.
View of the completed Golden Gate Bridge. (Photo Credit: Bettmann / Getty Images)

Finally, after four laborious years, the Golden Gate Bridge is completed.

Let’s see her in color

The Golden Gate Bridge.
The Golden Gate Bridge completed and in color. (Photo Credit: Michel RENAUDEAU / Gamma-Rapho / Getty Images)

Here she is in all of her iconic orange glory.