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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Waterville in Kennebec County, Maine — The American Northeast (New England)
 

The Two Cent Bridge

River Walk at Head of Falls

 
 
The Two Cent Bridge Marker image. Click for full size.
By David Jackson, March 28, 2020
1. The Two Cent Bridge Marker
Inscription.  
The history of toll bridges across the Kennebec goes back to the early 1820's when the bridge connecting Waterville-Winslow was partially destroyed by a March flood in 1827. Another great flood in 1832 damaged the bridge which was rebuilt only to have it damaged again in 1855 and completely carried away on October 5, 1869. The bridge we see today therefore, is a testament to the perseverance of the citizens of Waterville and Winslow to maintain a connection. The Ticonic (Two Cent) Footbridge was constructed in 1901 by Edwin Dwight Graves of the Berlin Construction Company for the Ticonic Footbridge Company, chartered in 1899. It opened on December 15, 1901 and provided workers with easy access to the Hollingsworth & Whitney paper mill across the Kennebec in Winslow, and also for workers from Winslow access to the then new woolen mill (later Wyandotte) on the Waterville side. The original toll was a penny, collected at a booth on the Waterville side. Less than a year after its opening, the bridge was washed away by high water. It was rebuilt in 1903 and to recover the cost, the toll for the crossing rose to two cents, resulting in the common
The Two Cent Bridge Marker image. Click for full size.
By David Jackson, March 28, 2020
2. The Two Cent Bridge Marker
Click or scan to see
this page online
name of the bridge. The bridge has survived two major floods (1935 and 1987) without major damage. For many years, the toll house on the bridge was inhabited by the toll keepers, Leon and Desimond Crowell (see accompanying photo). The toll was abolished in the early 1960's, when the Ticonic Foot Bridge Company presented the structure to the City of Waterville as a gift. Unfortunately, the bridge was largely ignored for many years and fell into disrepair. I was seriously damaged during a July 4th celebration in 1990 causing significant structural problems. In 2011, with funding assistance from the State of Maine, the City embarked on a significant rehabilitation project. The "wind" cables were replaced as was the walkway grating, the bridge was painted, and new handrails were installed. The Two Cent Bridge was first listed on the National Registry of Historic Places in 1973. This beautiful 576 ft. span over the Kennebec is the longest and oldest wire suspension footbridge in America and stands as an important reminder of the Kennebec River history shared by Waterville and Winslow.
 
Topics. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: Bridges & Viaducts. A significant historical date for this entry is December 15, 1901.
 
Location. 44° 33.071′ N, 69° 37.624′ W. Marker is in Waterville, Maine, in Kennebec County. Marker can be reached from the intersection
The Two Cent Bridge Marker image. Click for full size.
By David Jackson, March 28, 2020
3. The Two Cent Bridge Marker
Marker at entry to bridge on Waterville Side
of Front Street (U.S. 201) and Temple Street, on the right when traveling north. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 56 Front St, Waterville ME 04901, United States of America. Touch for directions.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 3 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Waterville Maine WWI Marker (approx. ¼ mile away); Waterville Maine Veteran's Park (approx. 0.3 miles away); Waterville Maine Civil War Memorial (approx. 0.3 miles away); Immigration (approx. 0.3 miles away); Lombard Log Hauler (approx. 0.4 miles away); Fort Halifax Park (approx. 0.8 miles away); Fort Halifax (approx. 0.8 miles away); Heritage of the Kennebec River (approx. 2.9 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Waterville.
 
More about this marker. This marker is along the River Walk at Head of Falls.
 
Also see . . .  Two Cent Bridge (Wikipedia). (Submitted on March 29, 2020, by Michael Herrick of Southbury, Connecticut.)
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on May 1, 2020. It was originally submitted on March 29, 2020, by David Jackson of Smithfield, Maine. This page has been viewed 73 times since then and 6 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3. submitted on March 29, 2020, by David Jackson of Smithfield, Maine. • Michael Herrick was the editor who published this page.
 
Editor’s want-list for this marker. Photo of the bridge • Can you help?

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Apr. 20, 2021