The Havana Bridge carries US-136 and two state highways across a
narrow spot in the Illinois River. The bridge consists of a single
large steel truss. Since the bridge has to be high enough to allow
boats to travel under the main span, yet the bridge does not have
any side spans, the resulting bridge approaches are relatively steep.
The bridge is very much like a highway roller-coaster. The effect
would be much more pronounced if the speed limit was higher than
the posted 35 miles per hour.
The bridge is named after Scott Wike Lucas, a US Senator from Illinois.
Lucas was born in 1892, served in the US Army during WW I, and was
elected to the US House of Representatives in 1934. He served in
the House until his election to the Senate in 1938. He was reelected
to the Senate in 1944, becoming the majority leader in 1948, a post
he held for 2 years. Lucas passed away in February of 1968. His
grave rests in a cemetery in Havana, Illinois, close to the bridge
that carries his name.