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Highways, Byways, And Bridge Photography
Lock & Dam #12
Mississippi River Lock & Dam
Bellevue, Iowa

Lock & Dam #12

• Structure: Lock & Dam #12.
• Location: River Mile 556.7.
• Dam Width: 8,370 Feet Overall, 849 Foot Wide Dam Structure.
• River Elevation (Pool): 592 Feet.
• River Elevation (Outflow): 583 Feet.
• Water Fall: 9 Feet.
• Annual Lock Traffic: 5,437 Vessels, 17,673,000 Tons (2005).
• Date Opened: May 13, 1939.
As much as Dubuque has turned its back on the Mississippi River, Bellevue has embraced the river. They advertise that each season is special along the great river. They go on to proclaim that there are 300 cities along the mighty Mississippi, but only one is called Bellevue, which means beautiful view.

The main dam structure is 849 feet long, consisting of seven Tainter gates and three roller gates. There is an additional 7,000 feet of earth embankment that includes a 1,200 foot secondary spillway.

The city of Bellevue sits on a small hill, so there is a very nice overlook to watch Lock & Dam #12 in action. There is also a state park just below the dam that has a sweeping view of the great river. Located on the other side of the river is the now closed, but still closed off, Savanna Army Depot. This is the place that the US Army would go when the US Army wanted to be alone. This was where the Army manufactured chemical weapons, was the main storage area for Army nuclear weapons, a former factory site for depleted uranium shells. It may take decades for the government to clean up that area well enough to open it up to the general public.


Lock & Dam #12
Lock & Dam #12
Lock & Dam #12
Lock & Dam #12
Lock & Dam #12

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