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April - May - June - Spring 2005
National Society for the preservation of Covered Bridges
David W. Wright, President|
P.O. Box 171
Westminster, VT 05158
44 Cleveland Ave.
Worcester, MA 01603
Carmela Sciandra, Newsletter Ed.|
P.O. Box 398026
Cambridge, MA 02139
Send dues to: |
382 S. Main Street
Andover, MA 01810
73 Ash Street
Manchester, NH 03104-4906
KC Klingensmith, Newsletter Ed.|
P.O. Box 425193
Cambridge, MA 02142
David Topham, Treasurer, Nov thru April only: 11707 Oakmont Ct., Fort Myers, FL
May thru Oct: 45 Village Way No. 50, Rockport, ME 04856-3805, 207-596-7472
MEETINGS and EVENTS for 2005
Sunday, March 20 at 1pm Meeting will be held at the Plymouth Church, 87
Edgell Road, Framingham MA..
Sunday, April 24 at 1pm Meeting will be held at the Plymouth Church, 87
Edgell Road, Framingham MA.
Sunday, 2005 Executive-Only Board Meeting. Location and time to be
The next newsletter is scheduled for July 2005. Therefore, anyone wishing to submit any
photos, articles, etc. should submit them to Carmela or KC by June 20, 2005. Any
newspaper or magazine articles must include source information and details (such as name of
publication, date, etc.). Electronic submissions are preferred. THANK YOU!
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A MESSAGE FROM YOUR PRESIDENT
Dear Fellow Members, Greetings:
As I look out of my window here in Westminster, between bouts of working on the current
President'.s Message, I can see clear signs of progress with each passing day, there is less
and less snow, and quite a few brown areas have emerged in my lawn where all was white before.
No crocuses have popped up yet, however, or at least none that I have been able to discover, but
their arrival is much anticipated, and shall not be long delayed, of that I am sure. With the coming
of spring, of course, each of us can begin to look forward to summer, and to those months of the
year when it is most agreeable to visit our beloved Covered Bridges.
Speaking of an 'agreeable time' in which to visit Covered Bridges, I have recently had
occasion to experience the exact contrary: To be more explicit, some three or four weeks ago, I
took a trip to Lancaster, New Hampshire, in order to have a look at the Mechanic Street Covered
Bridge, which structure is now closed to all traffic, both vehicular and pedestrian.
The Span is closed for good reason.
There are problems with decay in a certain number of the kingposts of this Paddleford Truss
where these kingposts intersect the bottom chord, and certain of the bottom chord sticks
themselves are of dubious solidity, particularly at the east end of the structure. Needless to say,
there is currently much discussion as to how the Mechanic Street Covered Bridge is ultimately to
be repaired, and on this subject, I shall undoubtedly have further thoughts, some of which are
likely to find their way onto the pages of future President'.s Messages. What I wanted to
point out here, however, it is that the day of my visit -- I arrived shortly after first light, and after
it had snowed most of the night -- the temperature was about zero, and the wind, primarily from
the north and gusty, cut through me like a knife. It was literally impossible to remain out on the
Mechanic Street Bridge for more than a few minutes at a time. As I had gone up there to gather
certain necessary data, I stuck it out, but I don't mind saying that, had I to do it again, and had I
complete liberty to arrange things in accordance with my own preferences, I should try to plan my
trip for a nice warm day in July or August.
To change the subject somewhat, I am happy to be able to report here that two of our
members, Douglas and Pauline Smith of Grand Isle, New York, otherwise known as Doug and
Polly, have agreed to take on the job of stuffing Topics and the Newsletter.
I hope that all of you out there realize just how important -- indeed indispensable! -- a task
For many of our members, for the vast majority I dare say, contact with other Society
members is maintained largely by means of our quarterly publications; that is to say
Topics and the Newsletter. Topics and the Newsletter in fact
constitute a precious link between all of us, a link which helps to hold our organization together,
and to spread our influence far and wide.
Many thanks, therefore, to both of you, Doug and Polly! And may your enthusiasm for the
"stuffing process" flourish unabated.
A word on membership: With spring fast approaching, I feel compelled to mention that the
time is also soon to come when all of us who are not yet "lifers" shall have to renew our
membership in the National Society. Given this fact, I do hope that all of you who can, who are in
a position to be able to, in other words, have been trying to think of ways of encouraging new
people to sign up for a stint or two with us and our group. Thanks to a fairly effective post card
campaign organized by our Membership Chairperson, Pauline Prideaux, who alas is soon to leave
this area for hurricane land, our numbers have increased significantly since last I had occasion to
bring the matter up. We could still use more, however, members that is, not hurricanes, so please,
all of you, give some consideration to the subject during the course of the next few months.
Remember, there is much strength to be had in numbers.
Finally, I was sad to have learned in the winter issue of the Newsletter of the death of
Robert A. Michenfelder, of Piermont, New Hampshire. Mr. Michenfelder, amongst many other
things, was a superb artist, and a man deeply concerned about the future of the Upper
Connecticut River Valley. Those of you who are long time members will undoubtedly remember
the campaign to save the great Bedell Covered Bridge over the Connecticut River between the
Towns of Haverhill, New Hampshire, and Newbury, Vermont. Mr. Michenfelder was fully
involved in that campaign. It was he, in fact, who did the drawings which regularly appeared in
the Bridgehead, the occasional newsletter of Bedell Bridge, Incorporated.
Alas, were it not for the depredations of Hurricane Frederick, we could all of us still admire the
wonderful work of restoration accomplished up there by Milton Graton, and the marvelously
skillful apprentices he had specially trained to assist him, for Bedell Bridge Inc., brought to a
successful conclusion the project they had so courageously committed themselves to at a time
when less passionate observers thought the matter hopeless. In a phrase, Bob Michenfelder was
no "summer soldier," nor was he a "sunshine patriot." He shall be greatly missed by all those who
were fortunate enough to have known him. The National Society for the Preservation of Covered
Bridges hereby extends its deepest sympathies to Mr. Michenfelder's family.
David W. Wright,
President, National Society for the Preservation of Covered Bridges, Incorporated
TACK-UP CARD CAMPAIGN|
Pauline Prideaux - Membership
I want to thank everyone that responded to the tack up card campaign. I received e-mails and
post cards from everywhere. The nice weather (I hope) will soon be here and we will be bounding
out there to see how our bridges faired through the winter months. Especially in the northeast.
Weather reporters said we had 22 snowstorms. I lost count!! But as we get out there make sure
you bring your cards with you. I have lots of cards. So don't be shy. If you don't have any just let
me know and I'll send them right out. Don & I went to about 10 bridges and tacked up our cards.
We actually went in snowstorms so I could take pictures. Not much snow in Florida where we
will be moving in the spring. So get out there and spread the news of our Society to the visitors of
the covered bridges. Send an email to Sanibe193@aol.com or write to 382 S. Main St.,
Andover, MA 01810.
Spanning New York State|
Covered Bridge News
By Bob and Trish Kane
Buskirk Covered Bridge -- NY 32-42-02/58-04 Willy Grimmke, Superintendent of
Washington County Department of Public Works shares the following news with us regarding the
Buskirk Covered Bridge. The truss work is complete, the siding is on the bridge and the roof
framing and sheathing is up. The bridge is self supporting and the shoring has been removed from
the river. We are anticipating the bridge will be open to traffic by April 1, 2005 and final
completion by the end of May. Great news, indeed!
Beyond New York
Virginia Covered Bridge Festival - For anyone interested in attending the Virginia
Covered Bridge Festival here are the phone numbers of a few motels in the Martinsville area:
Jameson Inn (276) 638-0478; Super 8 (276) 666-8888; Best Western (276) 632-5611; Best
Lodge (276) 647-3941; Holiday Inn (276) 666-6835; and Quality Inn/Dutch Inn located in
Collinsville (276) 647-3721. When making your reservations, please be sure to mention that
you are with the Covered Bridge Society to get the discounted rate. For more specific
information, contact Leola Pierce at VaBridgeLady@aol.com or call her at (757) 484-
4404 and she will be happy to send you a more detailed list of rates and services of each motel.
National Covered Bridge Postcard Week - For the covered bridge postcard
collectors in our midst, don't forget that May 8-14, 2005 is National Covered Bridge Postcard
week. This week is designated for trading, sending and sharing covered bridge postcards with
other covered bridge postcard collectors. Many collectors even have special postcards printed for
this event. Others simply mail one of their nice, duplicate cards. This is also a great time to order
covered bridge postcards from fellow bridgers who publish their own. And just think about how
many people handle that postcard while en route and see a covered bridge on the card. It is a
great way to help promote our bridges. Kindly remember that it is postcard etiquette that if
you receive a postcard, you return a card to the sender.
Important Notice: We have received numerous requests from folks
inquiring as to who will be replacing Richard Donovan in regards to assigning World Guide
numbers for new covered bridges. I am pleased to report that Dan Brock from Vernon, CT will
be assuming these duties. Many of you may already know Dan as he has been assisting Richard
for a number of years in this area and is the perfect person for the job. We all know how difficult
it will be to replace Richard given his wonderful knowledge of our bridges, but Dan will no doubt
do a great job having been well trained by his predecessor. If you have information on new
bridges, please send it along to Dan so he can assign a number to them. Don't forget to include
photographs of both the interior and exterior of the bridges as it helps to determine authenticity of
the truss and if the bridge is self supporting. Also, if known, be sure to include the following
information: builder's name; bridge name; length; number of spans; name of what the bridge
crosses (river, brook, stream, creek, etc.); directions or address to the bridge; truss type; name of
township where the bridge is located; and indicate if the bridge is a foot bridge or open to traffic.
Please include as much of this information as possible as it is difficult to assign a number to a
bridge without it. If you have any questions, please contact Dan at email@example.com.
Congratulations to Leola Pierce, Founder and Vice President of the Virginia Covered
Bridge Society! Senator Frederick Quayle recently introduced a bill commemorating Leola for
her service to the Commonwealth of Virginia as a result of her dedication to preserving Virginia's
historic timber covered bridges.Congratulations, Leola!
For anyone interested in all types of historic bridges, we found this excellent
bridge site -- Historic Bridges in the News -- A Survey of Bridge News from the Web.
You will want to visit it often as it is an excellent source of information regarding recent
happenings with all types of historic bridges. The web address is:
Update on Covered Spans of Yesteryear
By Bill Caswell, Webmaster for CSOY Project
Before getting into the details for this update, I would like to take a moment to thank all the
people who have submitted information. Without the help of correspondents throughout the US
and Canada, we would not have been able to achieve the milestones we have to date. In
particular, our knowledge of Oregon, Ohio and New York bridges has been enhanced
tremendously in recent weeks. More on that later.
The most significant supplement to the Covered Spans of Yesteryear website
(www.lostbridges.org) since our last update is the addition of Vermont pictures. As I write this,
685 past and current Vermont bridges have been documented. We have scanned pictures of 360
of them and included them on the website. A similar situation exists in New Hampshire where 255
of the 424 known bridges include pictures with a few more to be added shortly. Indiana is next on
the list to be scanned. If you are interested in offering pictures of the lost bridges in your area and
have the ability to scan them, please contact me. There is still a vast amount of territory to cover
and any assistance will be greatly appreciated. Email is usually the most effective way to contact
me - firstname.lastname@example.org.
In the year and a half since this project got underway, over 6,600 lost bridges have been
documented. As I mentioned earlier, we have started receiving New York and Ohio data, which
will increase that total significantly. Information about the known covered bridges of Oregon has
recently been received and is being entered into the database. Once that step is completed, reports
of the Oregon data will be sent out to experts in the area to check its accuracy.
As always, we welcome your comments and suggestions. With any project of this magnitude,
errors are inevitable. Data extracted from books reflects the knowledge at the time they were
written and may need to be updated. If you find inaccuracies in the data on the website, please
bring them to our attention so they can be corrected.
We have established a number of contacts, but are still lacking in certain areas. Specifically,
there is a need for people with knowledge of lost bridges in the southeastern states. If you can
help in this area, please let us know.
Trish Kane, 167 Williams Rd., Sherburne, NY 13460,
Bill Caswell, PO Box 2242, Concord, NH 03302-2242
AN UNDERCOVER STORY:
CALIFORNIA'S COVERED BRIDGES
by Jeanne Baker
Cost: $12.95 plus $3.00 s & h
To order: phone: 919-968-2976 or write: 605 Jones Ferry Rd., #EE4, Carrboro, NC 27510
THE BRIDGE KNOWS THE WAY|
by Frank F. Tobie
This is a tour of 108 covered bridges in 29 States and 4 Provinces as seen and photographed
by Frank and Elizabeth Tobie. The bridges and experiences in finding them are described. Includes
15 bridges in the Western States and British Columbia, 22 bridges in Middle America, 15 bridges
in the South and Southeast, 29 bridges in the Middle Atlantic and New England States, and 25
bridges in 3 Eastern Provinces and the Great Lakes States.
The book is hard cover, 144 pages with 138 photos in black and white, six maps, covered
bridge truss sketches, acknowledgments and sources and index. Dust jacket in color.
Reduced price is $39.95 plus $2 shipping. Send check to Frank Tobie, 3106 E. 15th Ave.,
Spokane W A 99223. Will autograph to person of your choice. Phone: 509-535-1423 or email:
New covered bridge located at the entrance to Lincoln Woods State Park in Lincoln, RI.
Plans for the bridge were created two years ago and construction began last fall. The bridge was
dedicated in October and cost $700,000 to build. This bridge, which is 51 feet long, is now the
third covered bridge that cars can pass over in RI. Photo by Monty Desjardins.
Covered Bridge Weekend in Virginia on June 18-19,
In 1998, the Virginia General Assembly was asked to make the third weekend in June as
Covered Bridge Weekend in Virginia by Leola B. Pierce. The bill was passed and became law.
The Covered Bridge Society of Virginia and the Patrick County Chamber of Commerce and
the town of Stuart, V A are proud to announce the First "Covered Bridge Weekend in Virginia."
It will be held on Saturday, June 18,2005, at the Bob White covered bridge and the Jack's Creek
covered bridge in Woolwine, VA.
There are eight bridges here in Virginia. You can probably tour the others in less than two
days. For more information, please contact:
Leola B. Pierce
4114 Forresthills Drive
Portsmouth, Virginia 23703
Attached is a list of motel rates for Covered Bridge Weekend in Virginia on June 18-
HOLIDAY INN 276-666-6835
1895 Virginia Ave. (Route 220 Business) Martinsville, VA
Regular rate = $76.00
AARP - AAA = $62.10 with card
Covered Bridge Society rate: $69.00 (with 2 beds)
BEST LODGE 276-647-3941
1985 Virginia Ave. (Route 220 N)
Regular rate = $63.95
AARP - AAA = $58.00 with card
Covered Bridge Society rate: $50.00 (with 2 beds)
QUALITY INN - DUTCH INN 276-647-3721
2360 Virginia Ave. (Route 220N Business)
Regular rate = $79.95
AARP - AAA = $73.00 with card
Covered Bridge Society rate: $64.95 (with 2 beds and free hot breakfast)
BEST WESTERN 276-632-5611
1755 Virginia Ave., Martinsville, VA
Regular rate = $83.00
Covered Bridge Society rate: $62.00 (with 2 beds)
JAMESON INN 276-638-0478
378 Commonwealth Ave., Martinsville, VA Regular rate = $78.00
AARP - AAA = $73.00 with card
Covered Bridge Society rate: $67.00 (with 2 beds)
SUPER 8 MOTEL 276-666-8888
1044 N Memorial Blvd., Martinsville, VA Regular rate = $62.88
Covered Bridge Society rate: $48.00 (with 2 beds)
DAYS INN 276-638-3914
3841 Greensboro Road, Ridgeway, VA
Regular rate = $62.00
Covered Bridge Society rate: $48.00 (with 2 beds) - Ask for Scott or Ken Upgrade room rate =
When calling these motels, tell them you are with the "Covered Bridge Society" for the
discounts. Please book as soon as possible.
Bridge between third and fourth holes of new Mill Creek Golf Club, Churchville, NY. Photo
by Doug and Polly Smith.
Bennington Banner, VT, February 26, 2005. Troubled Bridge over
Water. The Buskirk Bridge, a link between Rensselaer and Washington Counties, is
scheduled to be open for single-lane traffic by the end of March. A larger grand opening is
planned for May. The extensive restoration costs of the bridge are estimated to be about $2.2M.
Pepperell Free Press, MA, February 25, 2005. More Authentic Covered Bridge
Projected to cost $2.1 Million. Replacing the covered bridge over the Nashua River on
Groton Street could begin as early as March 2006 with completion in the fall of 2007. The design
of the new bridge as well as demolition details of the existing one are expected to be completed by
this fall with bids going out shortly thereafter.
The Union Leader, NH, February 15, 2005. A New Covered Bridge for
Littleton. The Riverwalk Bridge is Littleton NH's only covered bridge. This 352 foot, Warren
Truss pedestrian bridge was completed in September 2004 over the Ammonosuc River.
Bucks County Courier Times, PA . December 16, 2004. College Students Jailed
Burning. The six students who torched the historic Mood's Covered Bridge (38-09-07) last
sentenced to 18 days to 23 months in the county prison. They were also ordered to complete five
years of probation,
1000 hours of community service and to pay their share of $400K in restitution.
The Philadelphia Inquirer, March 15, 2005. Delaware Man Admits Setting Fire to
Bridge. A 19-year-old man of Georgetown, Delaware pleaded guilty to charges of arson,
criminal mischief. He and an accomplice set fire August 31 to Knecht's Covered Bridge in
causing about $30K damage. He is scheduled to be sentenced on April 5th.
Coos County Democrat, NH, March 23, 2005. Not Safe for Pedestrians: Big
Delays on Covered
Bridge Repair. The selectmen of Lancaster, NH have announced that the Mechanic Street
Covered Bridge is
so unsafe that even bicycle and pedestrian traffic cannot be allowed. The bridge will have a
nine-foot chain link
fence placed around it and is scheduled to be closed for at least a year and a half. An official
estimate from the state
for the extensive repair costs is still pending.
CONTRIBUTORS: Trish Kane, Dick & June Roy, George Eysenbach, Pat Tabor,
Visit Olin's Museum of Covered Bridges
Olin's Museum of Covered Bridges invites you to take a tour and learn about Ashtabula
County's historic covered bridges. While visiting the Museum, you may also see the many fun and
unique covered bridge items on display. Post card collectors can browse through an extensive
collection of old post cards. A variety of new cards are available for sale. Owned and operated by
the Olin family, the Museum is within walking distance of Olin's Covered Bridge, so be sure to
take advantage of the great photo taking opportunity. Open June-October, Wednesday, Saturday
and Sunday, 1 pm to 5pm or year round by appointment. Museum is located at 1918 Dewey
Road, Ashtabula, Ohio 44004. For info call 440-998-0025 or 440-993-0814. Also visit the
website at http://www.coveredbridgemuseum.org
A MESSAGE FROM THE MEMBERSHIP
This will be your last Topics/Newsletter. When you read this notice and see
(05) on the mailing label, it means that your dues are due. If (05) does not show up then you are
paid through June 2006. Please look at the following information and write me a note with your
renewal. Please be prompt, if possible, in order that Topics and the Newsletter be delivered by
bulk mail process. Thank you very much for your cooperation.ALL DONATIONS ARE TAX DEDUCTIBLE
Please print your name and address as you wish it to appear on our records and on your
Annual membership (family or individual)|
all living at the same address
Canadian Postage Supplement
European Postage Supplement
Single Life Membership
Mr. & Mrs. Life Membership
OPTIONAL DONATIONS FOR BRIDGE PRESERVATION (Harold F. Eastman Memorial
Howe Truss Contribution
Burr Truss Contribution|
Town Lattice Contribution
Haupt Truss Contribution
Whipple Truss Contribution
PLEASE MAKE CHECKS OR MONEY ORDERS TO N.S.P.C.B. INC. and mail to:
143 Freeman St. Ext.
Haverhill, MA 01830
Every year over $1,000 is remitted towards the Harold F. Eastman Fund from Optional
Donations. Please help keep the fund afloat for Bridge Preservation.
50th ANNIVERSARY ITEMS
We are very happy to have to offer a couple of items in commemoration of the 50th
Anniversary of the National Society for the Preservation of Covered Bridges.
Tote Bag - Has the National Society for the Preservation of Covered Bridges
emblem in dark blue on front pocket measuring 12 1 /2" by 15 1 /2" with a top snap and 20"
handle straps. Available for $15 including shipping
Ornament -Also has the Society emblem. It's a 3" round glass maroon ornament with
the emblem in gold. Available for $7 including shipping
Pens -Pens have "I love Covered Bridges - N.S.P.C.B." written on them. Available
for $1.25 including shipping.
You may want to have them all. One of each tote, ornament and pen will be available for $20
including shipping. They are great gifts for family, friends and other bridgers. We have a limited
supply, so please order yours today.
PLEASE MAKE CHECKS OR MONEY ORDERS TO N.S.P.C.B. INC and mail
382 S. Main St.
Andover, MA 01810l
The following are items still available through the Society: All of the items below are available
from June Roy, 73 Ash Street, Manchester, NH 03104-4906 or E-mail
The Book, Life in the Slow Lane is still available for $16.95 + $3.95
Shipping and Handling.
Society Arm Patch with N.S.P.C.B. logo 3" arm patch available for $1.75 + 55 cents
Books Available by Andrew Howard:
CB's of Madison County IA, A Guide . . . . . .$6.50
CBs of Connecticut, A Guide . . . . . . . . . . . . $5.50
CB's of Virginia, A Guide . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . $6.95
CB's of Bennington County VT, A Guide . . . $6.50
CB's of Massachusetts, A Guide . . . . . . . . . .$7.00
There is a $2.00 postage and handling charge for each book.
Covered Bridge Polo Shirts with N.S.P.C.B. Logo.
For a white Polo Shirt with a blue NSPCB logo, send $15.00 plus $3.95 for shipping and
to June Roy, 73 Ash Street, Manchester NH 03104-4906. Specify, Medium or
Extra Large. This is a fund raiser for the preservation fund. Buy several as gifts
for your family and friends. Shirts are 100% pre-shrunk cotton.
Other available books from the Society Store
Covered Bridges of Vermont by Ed Barna. This is a book depicting all the covered bridges in
Vermont in the year 1996. Postpaid $17.00 (From June Roy)|
There is also an excellent book out on Vermont Covered Bridges called, "Spanning Time --
Vermont's Covered Bridges." You can get a copy by contacting Joseph Nelson, 2 Sugar Hill
Road, Underhill VT 05489 or visit www.vermontbridges.com. Joseph Nelson is
of the Vermont Society.
WORLD GUIDE or INDEX TO COVERED BRIDGE TOPICS
Both are now available on computer diskette in either Mac or PC format. Please specify your
choice. It is in a compressed format to fit on a PC computer disc. You must have Zip Software to
decompress it. If you do not have the Zip software, Joe will send you a copy. The TOPICS
index includes: Table of Contents for each issue, an index to subjects and authors, as well as
more. The World Guide is kept up-to-date and in the regular format. Order your choice at
$5.00 each from Joseph Cohen, 130 Westfield Drive, Holliston, MA 01746 from mid-April until
mid-September. The rest of the year he can be reached at 210 Wellington F, West Palm Beach,
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Joe Nelson, P.O Box 267, Jericho, VT 05465-0267
This web site page was coded by J.C. Nelson. The content is the intellectual property of the
National Society for the Preservation of Covered Bridges, Inc. and its membership.
This file posted May 10, 2005