The Rock Covered Bridge and Zimmerman Covered Bridge National Register nominations note that Schuylkill County once had fifty-one covered bridges. By the time the nominations were written in 1977, the total count was down to two.
We had some fun recently during a site visit to identify the presence of a historic agricultural district for a solar project…
*Cue Sir David Attenborough’s voice*
Here we are searching for the elusive historic agricultural district. Often impossible to find, we are hoping to get a glimpse of it today, as whispers of its appearance have been heard. What vast expanses of agricultural land use and lack of modern residential development, perhaps we will get a sighting after all. But what is this that appears on the horizon? Large modern grain bins indicative of monocropping, followed by farmsteads lacking historic barns? Ah well, it would appear the earlier rumors of a visit from that elusive beast, the historic agricultural district, have been unfounded. Perhaps when we return to the hunt tomorrow, we may catch a glimpse.
As one of the most heavily traveled states in the country, Pennsylvania’s vast transportation network demonstrates technological changes from the 18th century to the present.
These changes, and the growth of Pennsylvania and the United States, would not be possible without bridges. Pennsylvania’s key location placed the Commonwealth at the forefront of development and application of innovative bridge technology and engineering.
In 2017, PennDOT, in conjunction with the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) and the PA SHPO, published the Metal Truss Bridge Management Plan (Management Plan). This plan, designed to serve as an ongoing planning tool, was the result of a multi-year effort to address the accelerating loss of historic metal truss bridges throughout the state. Now, roughly six years after the publication of the official document, PennDOT would like to provide an update.
Happy Archaeology Month!
One of the most common objects shown to archaeologists for identification are rocks. Most of the time, these objects just end up being rocks, but sometimes people do find one that has been altered in some way by human hands. These artifacts are called lithics and they can be found all over the United States and throughout the rest of the world.
As one door closes, a new door opens and a new journey in life begins. This feeling of sad excitement doesn’t even begin to encompass how I have come to view my experiences and learning opportunities this past summer.
This is part of a biannual blog series highlighting the agreement documents executed by PA SHPO in accordance with Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act and its implementing regulations.
Between January 1 and June 30, 2023, PA SHPO has been a signatory to approximately nine (9) Section 106 agreement documents with six different federal agencies as part of consultation for the resolution of adverse effects to historic properties.
Each week in May, to celebrate National Historic Preservation Month, we will highlight one of the 2022 Community Initiative Award winners. In this week’s post, I asked Janice Lynx, Executive Director of the West Short Historical Society, about their successful efforts to save Sheepford Road Bridge.
Sheepford Road Bridge is one of the first bridges to receive funds from PennDOT’s Historic Metal Truss Capital Rehabilitation Program, a new program created to promote the rehabilitation of historic metal truss bridges. I’ll take this opportunity to let our readers know that we also publish a biannual newsletter in partnership with PennDOT dedicated to the preservation and reuse of metal truss bridges. You can sign up here!
What better time of year than National Historic Preservation Month to announce the latest round of PA SHPO’s Community Initiative Award winners! The four recipients and their projects showcase a range of preservation success stories, demonstrating the value of volunteers, creativity, and community engagement.
The main character of our story, the Messerall Road Bridge, began its life over Pine Creek near East Titusville in 1876, carrying traffic associated with the local oil and lumber industries. The bridge served as a crossing over Pine Creek nearly 140 years before it was closed to vehicular traffic in 1987.