Historic bridges of northern Kentucky
Northern Kentucky, with the exception of the Cincinnati, Ohio metropolitan area, is almost all rural with rolling terrain and large expanses of farmland. There is no better setting than that to take a drive into the country and capture and recapture some historic bridges on an unusually warm December afternoon in 2011.
I started off by heading eastward along the AA Highway to the Walcott Covered Bridge, which spans Locus Creek and formerly carried Kentucky State Route 1159. The covered span, built in 1824 and rebuilt in 1881 as a 74 foot King and Queenpost truss, was privately owned until 1953 when it was bypassed by a new concrete bridge. It was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1975 and reconstructed in 2002.
The pre-2002 site is still visible.
Elsewhere in the county is this unique bowstring Pony truss, one of the only bridges of its type in the state. Located just west of Augusta, this one lane span over Turtle Creek was recently given a new bridge deck. It may date to the early 1900s.
Another unique but perhaps not so historic bridge is the H.L. Spurlock Power Plant Bridge west of Maysville. The seven span, 700-foot long plate girder is impressive in that it crosses Lawrence Creek and Kentucky State Route 8, and was built in 1977 as a railroad trestle that carried ash from the power plant to a landfill. In 1997, the bridge was reconstructed into a truck bridge.
Southeast of Maysville is the Dixon Road Bridge, a Pony truss that crosses the North Fork Licking River. It was built around 1947.
Continuing along Dixon Road, I came across the Davis Lane Bridge southwest of Tollesboro. Crossing the North Fork Licking River, the one-lane Pratt through truss was constructed in 1894 by the Toledo Bridge Company. It was recently given a new aluminum paint job and looks wonderful.
I ended the day trip with the Kentucky State Route 32 Pony truss bridge over Scrubgrass Creek south of Myers, Kentucky in rural Nicholas County. Constructed in 1932, the span crosses over an ex-Louisville & Nashville Railroad, now TTI.