Covered Bridges

Welcome to Lyndon, Covered Bridge Capital of Vermont's Northeast Kingdom!

covered bridge Lyndonville Vermont

Serving the utilitarian purpose of getting people and cargo safely across a river, and roofed to protect the sides and trusses from the temperamental Vermont weather, Vermonts covered bridges are a reminder of past times. Though built for crossing, a covered bridge in the old days has been known to protect a load of hay from a sudden thunder shower, provide a secluded spot for a couple to steal a kiss, or serve unintentionally as a roost for huge flocks of turkeys. The covered bridges in Lyndon have had their shingle roofs replaced by practical metal. However Lyndon is lucky, having five covered bridges remaining. These bridges are often sought out by visitors to photograph and admire, and are appreciated by many "natives" who recognize their value as part of their Vermont Yankee heritage.

randall Bridge Lyndonville VermontRandall Bridge - 1865
North of Lyndonville, just off Route 114.
In 1965 a new cement bridge was built at this point across the East Branch Passumpsic River. However, realizing the great loss in the destruction of the covered bridges, the bridge was left to preserve one more example of the craft and beauty inherited from the covered bridge builders. It now serves as a snowmobile crossing.

 

chamberlain mill Lyndonville VermontChamberlain Mill Bridge - 1881
Lyndon Corner, connecting York Street and South Wheelock Road

Though the mill is gone, the foundation still stands. A 1795 map shows a bridge crossing the branch of the river at this point. This stream today is designated on maps as Branch Brook and flows into the Passumpsic River. An August 1881 newspaper, the Vermont Union, says: "The Chamberlin Bridge at the west end of the village (Lyndon Corner) is having a new abutment and is to be built over into a covered bridge."

 

sanborn Run Lyndonville VermontSanborn Run Bridge - 1869
Near junction of U.S. Route 5 and State Route 114.

A bridge of some kind was built in 1858 when a road was constructed across the meadow connecting Lyndon Center with farms on the eastern side of the Passumpsic River. At that time there was no village of Lyndonville. After the high water of 1886, the Vermont Union reported "Selectman Cunningham commenced last Monday extensive repairs on the Centre Bridge, having to put in a new abutment, part of a new roof..." In 1960 this bridge was moved across town to its present location on the grounds of LynBurke Motel. The bridge was preserved, for it has been considered one of the finest examples of the Paddleford type constructed in the state.

millers run Bridge Lyndonville VermontMillers Run Bridge - 1995
Lyndon Center, Route 122

In 1800 a special tax was levied to construct a bridge near the mouth of Miller's Run. Repaired in 1816 and rebuilt in 1841, it must have been an open bridge, for the first reference on record of a covered bridge being there appears in the Vermont Union in August 1878: "The selectmen have completed the new covered bridge over Miller's Run."

In 1995, as a result of irreparable damage due to a storm, the bridge was completely replaced. The new bridge allows for one-way traffic and has a covered walkway for pedestrians. The bridge is noted for being the last covered bridge to be used in the State Highway system.

school house Bridge Lyndonville VermontSchool House Bridge - 1879
At the jct. of U.S. Route 5 and South Wheelock Road.

In 1872 a road was built connecting the now South Wheelock Road and Chapel Street (U.S. Rt. 5) at Lyndon Corner. Records show that the covered bridge was built in 1879. John Clement laid the abutments, J.C. Jones drew the plan of the woodwork and Lee Goodell framed and supervised the building of it. Off street parking and a picnic table are available.

 

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