I took a trip through Rhode Island, Connecticut and Massachusetts to photograph all the bridges in those states I haven’t been to yet.
Rhode Island has never had many covered bridges – historical records exist for only 5. The last of these was replaced with concrete in 1920.
It was not until 1993, when the Swamp Meadow bridge was opened, that a covered bridge carried traffic in the state again. But just a few months later the bridge was completely destroyed by arsonists. The community rallyed, and rebuilt, opening the current Swamp Meadow bridge in November of 1994.
Connecticut’s newest bridge is the Fitzgerald in Brooklyn. It was opened in 2010.
In the 1960’s a man named Raymond Schmitt started an extraordinary collection. He gathered a Victorian village including a church, homes, and other buildings, as well as furnishing them with antiques. At some point he had this bridge built by Thomas Kronenberger as well. Schmitt called the place Johnsonville Village and hosted weddings and other events.
In the 90’s he got into a dispute with the town, then passed away. His village is now all but abandoned. A few attempts have been made to purchase the village for some new purpose, but nothing has resulted yet. Whatever happens I hope this beautiful bridge is preserved.
This bridge was built in 2002 by Ron Ouelette using trees from the farm and 19th century building techniques. The glaring exception is the set of dormer windows across the south side. The bridge is used as a picnic area and the windows provide added light inside.
The Gilbertville Covered Bridge was closed for 8 years, waiting for repairs. The restoration happened last year and the bridge was opened to traffic once again in October of 2010. It was originally built in 1886.
This bridge is named after the world’s oldest floating naval vessel, the USS Constitution – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/USS_Constitution . It was built on private land in 1975.
For free interactive maps of all the covered bridges in the United States visit coveredbridgemap.com .