"West Montrose" Elmira by nighthawk

Elmira Travel Guide: 8 reviews and 22 photos

Just a dot on the map, and just as St. Jacob part of Mennonite country, lies West Montrose and his covered bridge.
Known locally as the "Kissing Bridge," this covered bridge was built in 1881 by John and Sam Bear for the Woolwich Town Council. Total length of the bridge is 208.5 feet, and this includes the covered portions on each end which extend six feet over the approaches.
Covered bridges were originally designed so that the roofs would preserve the wooden roadbeds from weather and rot: and the sides would calm skittish horses, apt to become nervous at the sight of flowing water.

This covered bridge is the only surviving covered bridge in Ontario.
It was built in 1881 at a cost of just over $3,000, the bridge carries a local township road over the Grand River North of Waterloo.
Because they were afraid the old oil lantern illumination might set the bridge on fire electric lighting was installed in 1950.
A major repair program was carried out in 1952 by the Ministry and in 1965 the bridge was reinforced internally with a hidden Bailey Bridge.
It was quite difficult to do because of the historical significance of the bridge.
Where possible materials and form similar to the original construction.

A house close to the bridge had this mailbox....

  • Last visit to Elmira: Nov 2002
  • Intro Updated May 9, 2016
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Reviews (11)

Comments (2)

  • Jewels's Profile Photo
    Oct 10, 2003 at 4:22 PM

    I bet the mennonites don't have a manure problem :o) I didn't know horses were afraid of flowing water.

  • Beach_dog's Profile Photo
    Jan 8, 2003 at 5:55 AM

    Nice pics Roulien, I wondering as to the purpose of a covered bridge, it keeps you dry in the rain, but what happens on your journey to it ;o) Ooops I should have read the intro., but kissing seems a good idea too... lol.


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