Skip to main content

The National Road - Pennsylvania - Claysville 'S' Bridge

Just about halfway between Washington and Claysville, where US 40 meets PA Route 221, sits one of the better examples of National Road infrastructure within Pennsylvania.  The Claysville 'S' Bridge sits just west of the intersection with PA 221 and is a great piece of the National Road's past.

Looking eastwards at the Claysville 'S' Bridge. (Adam Prince, July 2009)
The stone arch bridge was built between 1815 and 1818 and carried travelers between Washington and Claysville for over a century.  The bridge over an unnamed branch of Buffalo Creek is the only stone-arch 'S' bridge along the National Road in Pennsylvania.

Now looking westwards - grass has taken over the old roadway. (Adam Prince; July 2009)
As the automobile era began to develop, the Claysville 'S' Bridge would become obsolete.  The National Road and US 40 would be straightened just to the bridges south with a new and much smaller concrete bridge crossing the creek.
The Claysville 'S' Bridge not long after a new straighter alignment of US 40 took its place.  The photo above still has pavement along the bridge and the original alignment of US 40.  The photo below shows how the bridge was cut to make way for the new alignment of US 40. (A.S. Burns/Library of Congress - 1933)
(A.S. Burns/Library of Congress - 1933)
That then 'new' US 40 bridge would be replaced in 2009.  Though abandoned from automobile use - the 'S' bridge was preserved as a roadside park which it remains to this day.  The bridge was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1974 and remains a popular stop for locals and tourists following the highway.

By the mid-century, the 'S' bridge had become a roadside park complete with picnic tables.  The old road bed is now entirely grass. (Image courtesy cardcow.com)
Detail of the stone arches. (Adam Prince, July 2009)

Site Navigation:
Sources & Links:

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Interstate 40 and the H-Bomb

Interstate 40 within California is entirely contained to San Bernandio County over a course of 155 miles from Interstate 15 in Barstow east to the Arizona State Line at the Colorado River.  Interstate 40 is aligned entirely in the Mojave Desert over the same general corridor established by US Route 66 and the National Old Trails Road.   Interstate 40 is known as the Needles Freeway and has an interesting backstory which included the prospect of the Bristol Mountains being excavated by way of nuclear blasts as part of Operation Carryall.   Part 1; the history of Interstate 40 in California The focus on this blog will be primarily centered around the construction of Interstate 40 ("I-40") within California.  That being said the corridor of automotive travel east of Barstow to the Arizona State Line was largely pioneered by the National Old Trails Road ("NOTR")   In April of 1912 the NOTR was organized with the goal of signing a trans-continental highway between Baltim

California State Route 232

This past month I drove the entirety of California State Route 232 in Ventura County. CA 232 is an approximately 4 miles State Highway aligned on Vineland Avenye which begins near Saticoy at CA 118 and traverses southwest to US Route 101 in Oxnard.  The alignment of CA 232 was first adopted into the State Highway System in 1933 as Legislative Route Number 154 according to CAhighways.org. CAhighways.org on LRN 154 As originally defined LRN 154 was aligned from LRN 9 (future CA 118) southwest to LRN 2/US 101 in El Rio.  This configuration of LRN 154 between CA 118/LRN 9 and US 101/LRN 2 can be seen on the 1935 California Division of Highways Map of Ventura County. 1935 Ventura County Highway Map According to CAhighways.org the route of LRN 154 was extended west from US 101/LRN 2 to US 101A/LRN 60 in 1951.  Unfortunately State Highway Maps do not show this extension due to it being extremely small. During the 1964 State Highway Renumbering LRN 154 was assigned CA 232.  Of n

California State Route 128

California State Route 128 is a 121 mile State Highway which spans from California State Route 1 at the mouth Navarro River eastward to Interstate 505 near Winters.  California State Route 128 is one of California's most underrated scenic State Highways which traverses; Mendocino County, Solano County, Napa County and Yolo County.  Presently California State Route 128 has 11 unconstructed miles which would connect it from Interstate 505 east to California State Route 113 in Davis.   Part 1; the history of the original California State Route 28 and California State Route 128 What became California State Route 128 ("CA 128") was announced in the   August 1934 California Highways & Public Works  as the original CA 28.    CA 28 in it's original definition was aligned from CA 1 near Albion east to US 40 near Davis.   CA 28 as originally defined was comprised of numerous Legislative Route Numbers ("LRN") which were adopted as follows: -  LRN 1  between McDona