Home‎ > ‎

Connecticut Covered Bridges








GENERAL INFORMATION - CONNECTICUT COVERED BRIDGES

At one time Connecticut had over sixty highway and railroad bridges.  Most of these were in the western part of the state.  Records indicate only a dozen existed east of the Connecticut River.  Most of the covered railroad bridges served predecessors of the New Haven Railroad.  The first covered highway bridge in Connecticut was built as early as 1818.  It was the massive 974 foot long Hartford Toll Bridge by Ithiel Town and built by Town and Isaac Damon of Northampton, Massachusetts.  The original cost to built the bridge was $40,000.00.  Tolls were collected for 70 years to provide a return on the initial investment.  In 1889, the five towns that benefited most from the use of the bridge purchased it and removed the toll.  It was destroyed by fire on the night of May 17, 1895.  Flames started in the East Hartford end of the bridge and spread through the entire bridge within ten minutes while a crowd of approximately twenty thousand townspeople lined the banks of the river looked on.  Today, only three historic covered bridges still exist in Connecticut.  All the covered railroad bridges have disappeared.  In addition, to the three historic bridges still standing, there are two twentieth century covered bridges, and a contemporary bridge and numerous Romantic Shelters (non-authentic covered bridges) and one pony truss bridge.









OLD BRIDGE LANE
WGN 07-01-H
Fairfield County

The bridge was built in 1974.  It is a single span Stringer truss 50 feet long spanning Padanaram Brook.  It is located northwest of Danbury, Connecticut at Crown Court Condominiums on Old Bridge Lane.  Directions:  From I-84, exit 6, take SR 37 0.5 mile north to Old Bridge Lane and Crown Court turn left onto Old Bridge Lane to the bridge less than 0.1 mile ahead.  The bridge provides access to an condominium complex.  The bridge is the longest single span non authentic vehicular covered bridge in Connecticut.  The bridge rests on poured concrete abutments.  The bridge is covered with dark weathered vertical boarding on the sides to rail height and the portals.  The bridge is open on each side exposing the truss.  The deck consists of black asphalt and dark weathered shingles covers the roof.  The ceiling inside the bridge is enclosed with gray weathered longitudinal boarding.  The bridge has a concrete walkway down the interior on the downstream side.  







COVERED BRIDGE CONDOMINIUMS
WGN 07-01-J
Fairfield County

The bridge was  built in 1983.  It is a two span Stringer truss 44 feet long spanning Padanaram Brook.  It is located southwest of Hayestown, Connecticut at Covered Bridge Condominimus off SR 37.  Directions:  From I-84, exit 6, take SR 37 1 mile north to Covered Bridge Condominiums on the left (west) side of SR 37..  The bridge rests on poured concrete abutments.  The bridge is covered with gray painted vertical tongue and groove siding on the sides and portals.  The bridge is open under the eaves for ventilation.  The bridge has a walkway inside on the upstream side.  The trim around the vehicle and walkway entrances are painted white.  The deck consists of black asphalt covering over a concrete slab and gray asphalt shingles covers the roof.  





BULL'S
WGN 07-03-01
Litchfield County

The bridge was built in 1842. repaired in 1903,rehabilitated in 1949, repaired in 1969 and 1994.  It is a single span Town Lattice truss with Queenpost/Kingpost truss 109 feet long spanning the Housatonic River.  It is located in Bulls Bridge, Connecticut on Bulls Bridge Road.  Directions:  From Gaylordsville at the junction of US 7 and SR 55, go 2.6 miles on US 7 to the village of Bulls Bridge to Bulls Bridge Road, go left 0.2 mile to the bridge.  The bridge was built at  cost of $3,000.00.  The bridge is the only combination trusses in the state, and in all of New England.  During the 1949 rehabilitation, the combination queenpost/kingpost trusses were added.  In 1902-1903, the bridge was raised 20 feet to accommodate a canal at the east end of the bridge.  A center pier was added in 1930, but was removed during the rehabilitation.  The bridge rests on poured concrete on top of natural rock outcroppings abutments.  The bridge is covered with natural dark weathered vertical boarding on the sides and natural black weathered horizontal boarding covers the portals.  The bridge has four small square window openings equally spaced in the central area on both sides.  The deck consists of diagonally planking on top of a concrete slab and dark weathered cedar shingles covers the roof.  The bridge is also known as  Bull Bridge.  The bridge was listed on the National Register of Historic Places on April 26, 1972.





WEST CORNWALL 
WGN 07-03-02
Litchfield County

The bridge was built in 1864, rebuilt in 1946 or 1947, and repaired in 1973.  It is a two span Town Lattice truss/modified Queenpost truss 173 feet long spanning the Housatonic River.  It is located in West Cornwall, Connecticut on West Cornwall Bridge Road, SR 128.  Directions:  Just east of junction US 7 on SR 128 at West Cornwall.  A previous bridge at this location was washed away by a flood in 1837 and was replaced in 1841.  This bridge is the only combination Town Lattice/Queenpost truss bridge in Connecticut and in New England.  A pier was added in 1924.  The bridge was rebuilt by the Connecticut Highway Department in 1946 or 1947.  In October 1972, the bridge was closed for strengthening and repairs amounted to a cost of $280,000.00.  The bridge rests on mortared rock faced poured concrete abutments and a concrete pier.  The bridge is covered with red painted vertical boarding with battens on the sides and vertical boarding covers the portals.  The interior of the bridge is covered with old flaking white paint.  The bridge has seven window openings opposing along each side.  The deck consists of crosswise planking and white cedar shingles covers the roof.  The bridge is also known as the Hart and Hart's Bridge.  The bridge had a cameo appearance at the beginning of the 1967 movie VALLEY OF THE DOLLS.  The bridge was listed on the National Register of Historic Places on December 30, 1975.  





KENT FALLS STATE PARK
WGN 07-06-D
Litchfield County

The bridge was built in 1974.  It is a single span Town Lattice truss with Stringers 31 feet long spanning Kent Falls Brook.  It is located northwest of North Kent, Connecticut in Kent Falls State Park off US 7.  Directions:  From Cornwall Bridge, take US 7 south to Kent Falls State Park on the left.  The bridge is at the upper end of the parking area.  The bridge is restricted to park or other authorized vehicular traffic, is open to pedestrian traffic.  The bridge rests on mortared natural stone abutments.  The bridge is covered with barn red painted vertical tongue and groove boarding on the sides and the portals with white trimming at the entrances.  The bridge has three square window openings along each side. The deck consists of crosswise planking and dark weathered cedar shingles covers the roof. 





COMSTOCK
WGN 07-04-01
Middlesex County

The bridge was built in 1873, repaired in 1919, reconstructed in 1937-38, repaired in 1969, 1990, 1995 and 2012.  It is a single span Howe truss 94 feet long spanning Salmon River.  It is located in West Westchester, Connecticut, on the bypassed section of SR 16 (Colchester Avenue).  Directions:  Travel east on SR 2 to Exit 13, taking SR 66 west 4 miles to SR 196, take a left onto SR 196 south and drive 0.7 mile and take a left onto South Main Street, leave SR 196 drive another 0.7 mile and take a left at the traffic light onto SR 16 east (Colchester Avenue), travel 2.8 miles to the bridge on the left just before crossing its concrete replacement.  The bridge was built at a cost of $3,966.59.  In 1919 a truck loaded with beer broke through the flooring of the bridge and fell into the river below.  The nearby residents salvaged the beer.  In 1938 when the present Route 16 concrete bridge was  constructed, the covered bridge was retired.   The Civilian Conservation Corps rebuilt the bridge in 1937-38.  They installed the gates and windows, replaced the roof and floor supports.  In March 1969, the bridge was closed for an indefinite period after an inspection found that the west end of the bottom chords had rotted.  It was later determined that there were weak spots on the trusses.  The bolt holes had enlarged and the bolts were loosened.  New trusses were built, new bolt holes drilled, bolts were tightened, and a new cedar roof was installed.  The cost of this repair was approximately $50,000.00.  Minor repairs were made in 1995. The bridge rests on cut stone and mortar abutments.  A Pony truss structure extends 36 feet from the pier at the east end of the bridge to another abutment of dry stone at the bank of the river.  The bridge is covered with natural vertical boarding on the sides and portals.  The bridge has two horizontal window openings equally spaced along the upstream side and one horizontal window opening centrally located on the downstream side.  The deck consists of lengthwise planks and it has a cedar shake roof.  The bridge is also known as the Comstock's Bridge.  The bridge was listed on the National Register of Historic Places on January 1, 1976. 





COMSTOCK PONY BRIDGE
WGN 07-04-P1
Middlesex County

The bridge was built in 1873.  It is a Pony Queenpost truss 36 feet long spanning Salmon River.  It is located in West Westchester, Connecticut, on the bypassed section of SR 16 (Colchester Avenue).  Directions:  Travel east on SR 2 to Exit 13, taking SR 66 west 4 miles to SR 196, take a left onto SR 196 south and drive 0.7 mile and take a left onto South Main Street, leave SR 196 drive another 0.7 mile and take a left at the traffic light onto SR 16 east (Colchester Avenue), travel 2.8 miles to the bridge.  The pony bridge is attached to the Constock Bridge (WGN 07-01-01).     






BICENTENNIAL
WGN 07-04-07
Middlesex County

The bridge was built in 1976.  It is a single span Multiple Kingpost truss with Burr arches 60 feet long spanning the Moodus River.  It is located in southwest of Moodus, Connecticut at 42 Johnsonville Road.  Directions:  Just south of Moodus at the junction of SR 149 south and SR 151 north go north on SR 151 for 0.5 mile to Johnsonville Road,m turn left (southwest) onto Johnsonville Road to the first stop sign.  Turn left onto Leesville Road and look for the bridge on your right in the valley beside the millpond.  The bridge is tucked away in an almost obscure location in the rural area of East Haddam, Connecticut.  The trusses of the main bridge are multiple Kingpost overlaid on each roadway side of the truss with a single, nine-ply arch.  The arch does not go through the abutments, as a Burr truss arch would, but rests on the bottom chords.  It has a pedestrian walkway.  The bridge rests on stone and mortar abutments.  The bridge is covered with natural vertical tongue and groove siding on the sides and portals.  The bridge has four long horizontal window openings under the eave on the downstream side.  The deck consists of lengthwise random width planks and it has a cedar shake roof.  The bridge is also known as the Johnsonville Bridge.             
Comments