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The Golden Gate Bridge: End to the Era of Swashbuckling Bridgemen

The Golden Gate Bridge: End to the Era of Swashbuckling Bridgemen | Mobile Ranger

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I had no idea how dangerous it was for the people tasked with building the bridge!

Strauss’s unprecedented efforts to save lives during the construction of the Golden Gate Bridge did greatly decrease the average death toll associated with such a project. A total of 11 men died during the bridge’s construction — less than half of the 35 deaths projected by such a large and expensive project. Especially considering that so many of the men were woefully inexperienced, Strauss’s safety precautions were largely a huge success.

Strauss paved the way for strict safety precautions in bridge work and ended an era of swashbuckling bridgemen who would taunt death in daring acrobatic stunts just for the thrill of it. The chief engineer certainly earned his place in the history books, but both the swashbuckling and the cautious bridgemen are the real heroes behind the Golden Gate Bridge. They risked their lives to put bread on the table for their families at home, and in the end, it was their sweat and tears that bridged the Golden Gate — creating an international symbol of American enterprise and serving as a reminder of the bravery required to build the gateway to the Pacific.

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