The Romance of America’s Covered Bridges

There seems to exist a certain romance with the covered bridge.  After all, covered bridges have movies made about them, books written about them, national registries exist to record them, and thousands of people travel hundreds of miles just to admire their poetic call to yesteryear and a simpler pace of life.

Covered bridges dotted the eastern states of 19th century America with many of them becoming celebrated local landmarks.  Today, covered bridges still enjoy popularity through historic preservationists.

To the modern onlooker, the covering of a bridge may seem an ornamental extravagance.  However, as most of the early bridges were made out of wood, covering the bridge would protect the underlying structural members and extend the life of the bridge from a decade to 80 years or more.

I captured this photograph of the Pierce Stocking Bridge on the scenic Pierce Stocking Scenic Drive through Michigan’s Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore.  Built in 1960 to capture America’s love affair with the covered bridge, it had to be rebuilt in 1987 as hungry porcupines evidently found the original structure to be quite the tasty treat.

I must confess, I am a member of the covered bridge admiration society, and will always go out of my way to get one in front of my camera lens.

Do you have a favorite covered bridge?

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One Response to “The Romance of America’s Covered Bridges”
  1. Jan Lyon says:

    Her in west central Indiana we have our covered bridge festival in October. It’s become very commercial but still one of my favorite festivals and I do visit the covered bridges at other times of the year. Most have been restored, there are a few out of the way bridges and the local kids fish and swim there.

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