The trestle bridge caught fire in 1911. Crisped from existence, right as a locomotive crossed. The train dropped. The ravine caught it. There’s that banjo tune from back then, something about bone and coal and iron and souls. Sad song about a sad day and fairly accurate. It has a verse about the corn, too.

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Read “A Nickel For The Burlap Man” by Patty Templeton, in Issue #351

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Patty Templeton is a writer, Certified Archivist, and itinerant kitchen dancer. She has a MS/LIS from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and was a 2020 Library of Congress Junior Fellow. Her modes of research include oral history, oddball Americana, and media preservation. She lives with an orange trashcat and a lovely partner under southwestern skies. Find her on Twitter via @PattyTempleton and her recent work at Mermaids Monthly.

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