A bridge built in the 1870s once existed at this location. It was removed and replaced by the Northern Pacific Railroad in 1891. The new bridge featured two Pratt-style through truss spans. On May 10, 1974, the load on a rail car shifted, causing the train to hit and damage the sides of the east span. The span failed, and a number of railroad cars ended up in the Mississippi River. The failed railroad span was beyond repair, so the Burlington Northern brought in a 1900 era span that once crossed the Columbia River in Washington. That span is a Warren-style through truss. The result is that the bridge has two different style and sized truss spans. It looks unusual, but it serves its purpose.
The photo above is a view of the bridge from the city park in downtown Little Falls looking to the north. The two different bridge styles are visible in this view. The photo below is a view looking down the length of the bridge from the east side of the river.