BETHEL MAINE HISTORY—THE BETHEL JOURNALS—BETHEL’S COVERED BRIDGE OVER  SUNDAY RIVER

BETHEL’S SUNDAY RIVER COVERED BRIDGE

In 1817 the Town of  Bethel voted to  build a  bridge over Bear River and followed  with a vote in 1822 to bridge Sunday River.  This bridge was periodically repaired—1837 responsibility for repair of the bridge was left in the hands of the selectmen.

 

 1852 the town voted to rebuild the Sunday River bridge and a superintending committee was chosen.

 

 In the late 1870’s , a new covered bridge was built over Sunday River on the Bethel to Newry Corner road - a “hybrid” engineering design—Paddleford truss reinforced with a Burr arch truss. 

Artist Bridge over Sunday River in Newry is a standard Paddleford truss bridge.

 

Theodore Burr, Torrington, Ct created the arch truss bridge where the truss is anchored by abutments.  The Paddleford truss design was created by Peter Paddleford from Littleton, NH.

In 1927, the Bethel Sunday River bridge was being replaced when November 1927’s flood washed out the temporary bridge.

 

Until 1937 the road from Bethel village to Bethel’s bridge over Sunday River then on to Newry Corner passed through Swan’s Corner—see map below.

Bridge photos—Bethel Historical Society.  Earth images—Google Earth.

PO Box 763

Bethel, Maine 04217

www.thebetheljournals.info

Bethel’s Covered Bridge over Sunday River (US Route 2) which was being replaced with a temporary bridge when the 1927 flood occurred – washing out the temporary bridge.  Background building—is now site of Harrington farm

Note the arch truss in this photo of the Bethel Sunday River bridge