Mansfield Covered Bridge, Spanning Big Raccoon Creek, Mansfield, Parke County, IN
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Spanning Big Raccoon Creek, Mansfield, IN
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Documentation compiled after 1968.
Survey number HAER IN-44
Building/structure dates: 1867 initial construction
Significance: The Mansfield Covered Bridge was built in 1867 by noted bridge builder J.J. Daniels of Rockville. The contract between Daniels and Park County called for a "good substantial Burr bridge across Big Raccoon Creek" and specified payment to Daniels of 12,200 dollars for completion of the bridge. The truss system is, then, a timber Burr arch in two spans, supporting a wooden deck between abutments of 245 feet. Portals at either end of the bridge amount to the total structure being just over 277 feet long. The bridge was one of the first of many built in Parke County, at a crucial location between Rockville and Greencastle. Mansfield was a logical place to span Big Raccoon Creek because of the operation of a large water powered roller mill on the west side of the creek just upstream of the bridge. Big Raccoon Creek is known to have flooded substantially in 1868, 1913, and 1957 without damaging the structure of the bridge. Completion of the Mansfield Flood Control Dam in the early sixties, four miles upstream from the bridge, assures safety from future floods. At the time of recording the bridge is closed to traffic due to weak abutments, but is due for repair and reopening in the near future.
Daniels, J. J.
Historic American Engineering Record (Library of Congress)
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