Newfield in Tompkins County, New York — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
A Lasting Legacy
The Newfield Covered Bridge was constructed between 1851 and 1853. Stone masons Benjamin Starr and Dick Russell laid the abutments for the bridge. Carpenters for building the bridge were Samuel Hamm and his two sons David and Sylvester, David Dassance, and Patchen Parsons. At the time of the bridge's construction, men would work for $1.00/day and the cost of lumber was only $6.00 per one thousand feet. The total cost of the bridge was $800 and measured 115 feet long and 16 feet wide.
The design of the Newfield Covered Bridge is called the Town Lattice Truss. Many of the covered bridges still standing today are of this Town Lattice pattern, which was patented in 1820 and 1835 by architect Ithiel Town, of New Haven, Connecticut. By this technique, planks are joined together with wooden pins, or trunnels, in a lattice pattern. This type of framework is actually an uninterrupted series of crisscross diagonals
The Newfield Covered Bridge has undergone various repairs and restorations throughout its lifetime. In 1969, due to the bridge's poor condition, Tompkins County was actually thinking of replacing the Covered Bridge with a steel and concrete bridge. The New York State Covered Bridge Society, in a joint effort with Grant and Marie Musser, worked many long hours convincing authorities to preserve the bridge. Finally, their hard work paid off and the bridge underwent a "facelift" in 1972. The portal entrance was raised two feet in order for cars to have enough clearance, the entire bridge was raised one foot, and an addition of two arches running along each side of the bridge were added for support. Milton S. Graton and his two sons of Ashland, New Hampshire, specialists in restoring wooden covered bridges, did the contracting work. The total cost of the project was $42,000. In the county's effort to continue the preservation of the bridge, another restoration project was planned for 1998. The restoration included an abutment and bank stabilization, new decking and roofing, timber guide rail extensions, a fresh coat of paint, parking lot upgrade, a pedestrian bridge,
Did you know?
• The Newfield Covered Bridge is the lone survivor of three covered bridges that Tompkins County once boasted and is 1 of 24 authentic covered bridges of the 250 New York State once had. It is the oldest covered bridge still open to daily vehicular traffic.
• The original reason that the bridge was covered was because it was more economical to reroof a covered bridge every 20 years than to build a new unroofed bridge. The roof protected the flooring from the elements.
• Samuel Hamm, one of the original builders of the bridge, wanted to have a mural painted on the inside of the bridge, patterned after the famous covered bridges in Luzern, Switzerland. The artist died, however, and the onset of the Civil War dashed any further endeavors in this area.
• The actual date of the bridge's construction as unknown due to a fire in June of 1875 which destroyed
• Several descendants of the men who built the Covered Bridge still reside in Newfield today.
Location. 42° 21.771′ N, 76° 35.413′ W. Marker is in Newfield, New York, in Tompkins County. Marker is on Bridge Street just north of Main Street, on the right when traveling north. Marker is located beside the small parking area near the southeast corner of the covered bridge. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Newfield NY 14867, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 8 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Newfield Covered Bridge (here, next to this marker); Historic Newfield Village Cemetery (about 500 feet away, measured in a direct line); Estabrook Cemetery (approx. 5 miles away); C.C.C. CO. #1265 (approx. 5.1 miles away); Jupiter (approx. 7.1 miles away); Ezra Cornell (approx. 7.2 miles away); Saturn (approx. 7.2 miles away); Ithaca College (approx. 7.2 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Newfield.
Regarding A Lasting Legacy. National Register of Historic Places #00000095
Related markers. Click here for a list of markers that are related
Also see . . .
1. The Covered Bridge. The bridge crosses the West branch of the Cayuga Inlet and was dedicated to Elijah Moore, who was the son of an early settler. (Submitted on December 6, 2019, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.)
2. Newfield Bridge (Wikipedia). Newfield Bridge is a wooden covered bridge over the Cayuga Inlet west branch. It is one of 29 covered bridges in New York State and the oldest covered bridge in New York that continues to carry motor vehicle traffic. (Submitted on December 6, 2019, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.)
Categories. • Architecture • Bridges & Viaducts • Man-Made Features •
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Credits. This page was last revised on December 6, 2019. This page originally submitted on December 3, 2019, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida. This page has been viewed 36 times since then and 2 times this year. Photos: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13. submitted on December 6, 2019, by Cosmos Mariner of Cape Canaveral, Florida.