Covered Bridge Exhibit
By Jean Simpson, Education Coordinator
The Curator, June 2007
When I was growing up in Preble County my family would visit my Great Aunt’s farm and I became very interested in the covered bridge that spanned their creek where it crossed the public road. I even drew a picture of it when I was in high school. George, my husband, is especially interested in how they are built and when we see one during our travels, we often stop to look at it up close.
So I was very excited to learn that the Preble County Historical Society will be hosting the Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition entitled “Covered Bridges: Spanning the American Landscape” from June 30 – Sept. 3, 2007 at the Preble County Historical Society’s farm. It is located at 7693 Swartsel Road, off Rt. 122 between Gratis and Eaton. The exhibit included a Preble County Legacy display, a Sunday afternoon lecture series, bridge tours and children’s activities.
Preble County originally had 29 covered bridges. Seven bridges remain and five are still in use. Their most famous bridge is the Roberts Double Barrel Bridge. It is the oldest double barrel (two lane) bridge in the U.S., and one of only six still in existence.
After learning about the exhibit I began to wonder if there had been any covered bridges in Washington Township. We have photos of two bridges in our archives. One was on Centerville Station Road just before it dead ends into Wilmington Pike. The other was on Mad River Road between Alex Bell Pike and Munger Road. It spanned Holes Creek.
To learn more about the Smithsonian Covered Bridge Exhibition go to the web site: www. pchs/preblecounty.com.