Covered Bridge Conference in Dayton, June 5-8, 2013

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A preservation colleague of mine from the National Park Service just emailed me about an interesting conference on a topic that most everyone likes… covered bridges! You don’t have to be an historian, engineer, headless horseman or Clint Eastwood fan to appreciate covered bridges and support their preservation. The National Center for Preservation Technology and Training (which is part of the National Park Service) is sponsoring the Second National Covered Bridge Conference…. but keep in mind, the first one was ten years ago, so don’t wait around  to attend if you’re really interested in covered bridges!

From the looks of the program, everyone who’s anyone in the field of historic bridges will be there…. AND they’re building a real timber-frame kingpost truss to demonstrate historic construction techniques! Have I died and gone to historian-engineer heaven?

The conference is in Dayton this time around, which isn’t too far from me here in Ohio, so I’m hoping I can attend myself. The West Virginia Division of Highways undertook a program of preserving all the remaining covered bridges in the state a number of years ago. In my travels as a DOH employee, I was always excited to come upon one of these fascinating old structures. I remember being pleasantly surprised by the Fletcher Creek Covered Bridge (below) out on a back road on my way to a different bridge in Harrison County. It still carries traffic!

Fletcher Creek Covered Bridge, just sitting in the wilds of Harrison County.

Fletcher Creek Covered Bridge, just sitting in the wilds of Harrison County.

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Courtney is the owner and principal of Aurora Research Associates, LLC, an historic preservation consulting firm.

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