This attractive arch bridge which was built to carry pedestrians in a park setting is located on the creek right upstream of a beautiful waterfall. The bridge has the appearance of a stone bridge but it is assumed that the bridge is actually a concrete arch bridge with stone facing. The reason for this assumption is that the stones found on the surface of the bridge are too small and not locked together tightly enough to provide any load-bearing ability. Also, the bridge was built in 1938, and the practice of facing concrete arch bridges with stone was often done with park bridges built during this period. The bridge was built in the place of a dam that was built here in 1905 for the use of area mills. When the bridge was built, stone abutments from the dam were incorporated into the bridge. These stones can be seen on the ends of the abutments on the east side of the bridge. Unlike the stones on the bridge itself, these are large stones carefully placed to provide structural value. They provide an interesting contrast to the small cobblestones of the bridge. The bridge deck is surfaced in flagstone.
The Estate of Col W.E.S. Knowles provided funds for the construction of this bridge. The bridge was not maintained and eventually deteriorated to the point that it was closed to traffic. The bridge was rehabilitated in 2000 by the Optimist Club of Greensville and reopened. The bridge remains in good condition today, and appears to be maintained more carefully. For example, in June, 2012, the bridge closed for a few days to repair the flagstone deck.
Norm Van Bergen contacted HistoricBridges.org and provided the following information:
My father told me, before he passed away, that HIS dad built this bridge. My grandfather, Walter Van Bergen, was a master stonemason from Holland who emigrated to Canada. His work is present in many homes in the area, and in this case, a bridge as well. I can't attest that he was the only person who worked on the bridge, but he was certainly a key contributor to its design and construction. I'm afraid I don't know the company that he worked for.
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