Throughout November, Historic Bridge Awareness Month explores the spans and arches that carry goods and people across the country. Whether the trusses are only a memory or stand proudly still against the horizon, Historic Bridge Awareness Month recognizes their place in the building of a nation.
We are nostalgic where bridges are concerned. They played an iconic role in building the United States. From carrying supplies West to the impressive towering trusses carrying locomotives across wide gorges, bridges took dreamers to unimaginable destinations. Through miracles of engineering, humans built solid pillars of stone and arching steel structures. But they didn’t stop there. Thanks to the development of steel cable, bridges seem to float across open spans of water carrying the weight of small cities. And yet, we still explore the colorful wooden covered bridges that dot the country.
We’ve transformed some of our precious steel bridges from vehicle to pedestrian traffic for preservation purposes. Nostalgia has a way of making us look back while we’re looking forward. Historic bridges provide a record for a community of the people who have gone before them. Preserving them is not just a sense of nostalgia, but a means of restoring an engineered structure to purposeful use.
HistoricBridges.org unofficially declared November Historic Bridge Awareness Month in 2006 to reflect on the loss of historic bridges and to encourage preservation of historic bridges.
HOW TO OBSERVE
Visit a famous bridge or learn the history of your favorite crossing. Around the country, there are thousands of lost bridges. Many have been replaced over time. Curious about the bridges in your community? Visit your local historical society to find out more, or go bridge hunting on your own. It can be quite the adventure! Use#HistoricBridgeAwarenessMonth to post on social media.