Pulp Mill Covered Bridge 45-01-04#2
Pulp Mill Bridge
Photo taken by John Borthwick securevermont.com
BH Photo #188670
An unusual bridge due to its spotty history, this structure is nonetheless significant as one of only a few double barreled covered bridges remaining in the country. Heavily modified over its life, its actually questionable what design elements are original for this structure. Even its build date, most commonly given as 1853, is contentious as dates such as 1808, 1820 (NBI uses this), 1850, and 1860 have been given.
As originally designed this was a single span structure with a burr arch truss. The original arch was true to the Burr design as it passed through the lower chord and is braced against the abutment. On the outward trusses the original Burr arch is extant, but there is no trace of it on the internal truss. The original arch was supplanted at some point with a laminated wooden arch consisting of several layers of planking. On the outward trusses the new arch follows the path of the original Burr arch, however on the center truss the arch extends above the upper chord.
The trussing work is also unusual, and its hard to discern what was original. At first glance it would appear to be a multiple Kingspost truss (which would be logical as that was the system used in conjunction with the Burr arch), however in several (but not all) panels counter braces have been installed. Whether this was a deviation made during the design or a later modification is unknown.
The substructure has also not been spared from modification, as two river piers have been added, reducing this to a three span bridge. The piers are concrete based with wooden cribbing extending up to the lower chord, thus providing a non-historical appearance.
At least because of these modifications though, the bridge does not employ steel stringers to carry the road weight, a fate that many covered bridges have suffered. Whether that is worth the high price paid in this bridges historical integrity though is up for debate.
- Modified Burr arch-truss covered bridge over Otter Creek
- Middlebury, Addison County, Vermont
- Open to traffic
- Built 1853; Rehabilitated 1980; Rehabilitated 2012
- - Alpine Construction (2012 rehabilitation)
- Double-barreled Burr arch truss. Additional arches added
Length of largest span: 65.9 ft.
Total length: 199.0 ft.
Deck width: 8.9 ft.
Posted to the National Register of Historic Places
- Also called
- Paper Mill Bridge
- Approximate latitude, longitude
- +44.02457, -73.17750 (decimal degrees)
44°01'28" N, 73°10'39" W (degrees°minutes'seconds")
- Approximate UTM coordinates
- 18/646057/4876215 (zone/easting/northing)
- Quadrangle map:
- Inventory numbers
- NRHP 74000200 (National Register of Historic Places reference number)
WGCB 45-01-04 #2 (World Guide to Covered Bridges number)
BH 47126 (Bridgehunter.com ID)
- Inspection (as of 11/2012)
- Deck condition rating: Very Good (8 out of 9)
Superstructure condition rating: Satisfactory (6 out of 9)
Substructure condition rating: Satisfactory (6 out of 9)
Appraisal: Not deficient
Sufficiency rating: 30.5 (out of 100)
- Average daily traffic (as of 2010)
- August 26, 2016: New photos from John Loxton
- June 8, 2015: Updated by Michael Quiet: Moved news article from description to comments. Added history
- March 20, 2015: Updated by Michael Quiet: Added category "Double-barreled"
- February 27, 2014: New Street View added by Dave King
- June 14, 2013: Updated by Alexander D. Mitchell IV: Fixed typo, added photo and major restoration
- March 17, 2011: Updated by John Borthwick securevermont.com: corrected date built
- November 27, 2010: Added by John Borthwick securevermont.com
- John Borthwick
- Alexander D. Mitchell IV
- Dave King - DKinghawkfan [at] hotmail [dot] com
- Michael Quiet - mquiet [at] gmail [dot] com
- John Loxton