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Hamden Covered Bridge Update!

Hamden Bridge. Photo by Dick Wilson,

Date: Tue, 16 Jan 2001
From: Pat Kane
To: Joe Nelson
Subject: Hello Vermont!
Good morning, Joe!
         Thought you might be interested in a brief update on the Hamden Covered Bridge.
         The steel I-beams have been removed as well as the center support. The shale is a frozen block, so it doesn't=92t look like the bridge will be opened for traffic now until spring. They will soon be placing oak running planks on the deck to help protect it against illegal snow mobile track spikes.
         The Copeland Bridge is at a stand still right now, of course due to the weather.
         That's about it from New York. Keep warm, and stay well up there in Vermont!          Warmly, Trish

Hamden Bridge. Photo by Dick Wilson,

Date: Sat, 13 Jan 2001
From: Richard Wilson
To: Joseph Nelson
Subject: Hamden Update
Hi Joe, Yesterday, Friday the 12th, I drove down to see the Hamden Covered Bridge. It is now across the river and setting on the abutments. All the steel beams that were used to pull the bridge across the river have been removed. All that has to be finished are the guard rails leading to the bridge. It is not open to traffic now, but you can walk through the bridge. The construction crew is gone and the highway dept. only has a few things to do to the road before the bridge is reopened.          Dick Wilson

Hamden Bridge. Photo loaned by Phil
Pierce , 01/11/01

Date: Thu, 11 Jan 2001
From: Phil Pierce
To: Joe Nelson
Subject: Fw: Hamden Bridge
Hi Joe - A friend just sent [these photos] along - thought you might enjoy them. We have completed removing the steel falsework today and the old timber bent. Can't get the approach work done (ground frozen, obviously). We're going to go ahead and install timber running planks on top of the glulam deck in the next weeks. Phil

Hamden Bridge. Photo loaned by Phil
Pierce , 01/11/01

Date: Tue, 11 Dec 2000
From: Phil Pierce
To: Wayne Marshfield, Trish Kane, Joe Nelson, Gabrielle Buel, Dick Wilson
Subject: Hamden Status

Hi Folks - a brief update on Hamden - the Contractor is essentially done and has moved off site. The County is in the process of removing the steel bents from beneath the bridge and the old timber pier. We hope to move the shale pad that was used for crane access on the south side over to the approach roadway. If we are lucky and the shale can be worked without much problem (concern for frost in it) and if we can provide a reasonable approach grade, then we hope to reopen the bridge in the next weeks. If so, then we will position concrete barriers as temporary constraints. We will have to add gravel and the asphalt next spring. We want to wait on installing the timber guide railing until after the asphalt is placed.

Hamden Bridge. Photo by Irma Petras,
Nov., 2000          If the shale is full of frost and if we get a lot of snow and rain while trying to get it in place, then it would become a quagmire when it thaws and we do not want that condition. Accordingly, I cannot say at this time when we will know about potential opening - will keep you posted.
         I am told that the Town plans a special opening celebration next summer. As always, I'm sure there will be a lot of disappointment with the potential delay - no one more than me. If anyone has questions, please contact me - I'll handle the heat if I know of it.          Phil

Hamden Bridge. Photo by Irma Petras,
Nov., 2000In the photo above: Van Buiten of Oxford, NY moves the bridge using a cable on a Mack Truck.

Photo to the right: Note the red and green steel I beams which the bridge rolled over and the progress of the bridge.

Below right: They did not place the bridge on the abutments the day of the move. It was left about 6 ft. short. It would be finished off the next few days.

[Captions by Irma Petras]

Date: Sun, 10 Dec 2000
Good Morning from chilly New York, Joe!

Hamden Bridge. Photo by Irma Petras,
Nov., 2000          Irma Petras was kind enough to send me some photos she took of the Hamden Covered Bridge the day it was moved back across the water. I thought you might be interested in them as an update on your web site. Irma said to feel free to use any you would like.
         I hope you are staying warm up there...we certainly are trying to here! Burrrrr it's cold!
Happy Holidays to you and yours,          Bob and Trish

The Hamden Covered Bridge Count-down!

Date: Tue, 14 Nov 2000
From: Phil Pierce
To: Dick Wilson, Joe Nelson, Trish Kane
Subject: Hamden update

Hamden Bridge. Photo by Irma Petras,
Nov., 2000

Hi folks - it's finally over the abutments. Will take quite awhile to remove the steel work and lower it onto the final blocking.
         When I first alerted you quite some time back I warned that it would take time. We are all relieved that the big part of the move is now over. I'm headed for bed!          Phil

Date: Tue, 8 Nov 2000
From: Phil Pierce
To: Wayne Marshfield, Trish Kane, Joe Nelson, Gabrielle Buel, Dick Wilson
Subject: Latest on Hamden move

Hi folks - slow going getting ready for the move. May be mid Thursday before they are ready to move it up to the abutments. Would take at least another day to get it across the water, maybe longer. Once over the water, it will be some time to get the steel out from under to allow it to be lowered.
         The weather sounds bad for Thursday and Friday. As of this evening, still no word whether they will even work Thursday. I can believe now that it might be next week before it's finished moving. Contractor is not wishing to work overtime, so don't expect long days or weekend work.         Phil

Hamden Bridge. Photo by Irma Petras,
Nov., 2000Photo above right: We went back on November 29th and the workers were getting the framework for the portals ready for finishing off.

The picture to the right clearly shows that the bridge is standing on its own over the west branch of the Delaware River.

Below right: The reason they didn't finish off either end of the bridge is in case they needed to make adjustments for the portals.

Date: Tue, 8 Nov 2000
From: Pat Kane

Hamden Bridge. Photo by
Irma Petras, Nov., 2000 To: Bob Munson, Carleton Corby, Dick and June Roy, Joe Nelson, Ray Smith, Richard Allen, Warren Rinda, Wayne Marshfield, Dick and Jeanette Wilson
Cc: Phil Pierce (E-mail)
Subject: Hamden Covered Bridge

Good morning, everyone! :-)
         Just received a call from Phil Pierce informing me that it looks like the bridge will be moved back over the water Thursday, November 9th. They will still be working on the preparation work for the move today. Hopefully, we will see some of you there tomorrow. (And let's hope for a nice, warm day!)
         What a great job everyone has done to help preserve this wonderful part of our heritage. A special thanks goes to Phil Pierce, Delaware County officials, and Wayne Marshfield for keeping us informed on the progress of the bridge with periodic updates.
         What an exciting day it will be to see the Hamden Covered Bridge moved back "home" again. Bob and I can't help but wonder if Robert Murray will be there...if only in spirit. nbsp;        Warmly, Trish

Date: Tue, 6 Nov 2000
From: Phil Pierce
To: Dick Wilson, Wayne Marshfield, Trish Kane, Joe Nelson, Gabrielle Buel
Subject: Hamden move

Hi folks,
         Kline has hired a subcontractor to help move the bridge. The preparations at the site have begun. May get the bridge up to the south abutment on Tuesday afternoon. I have a meeting in Vermont Tuesday nite and have directed the contractor to wait on the actual move over the abutment until I get back Wednesday late morning. Should be re-sited by Thursday at the latest. Will be a slow process.
         Lots of work to lower the bridge - must move the steel beams to the side to allow it to be lowered. The steel will not be removed from the river for some time yet to be determined.
         No word on when approach work done, but will be before Christmas, hopefully much before.          Phil

Date: Tue, 5 Nov 2000
From: Phil Pierce
To: Trish Kane
Cc: Joe Nelson, Dick Wilson
Subject: Hamden resiting

Hi - forgive me for late notice, but still rather up in air, but expect the bridge to be moved this week. Maybe by Wednesday. Contractor has hired a specialty firm that has moved many large structures. Will be mobilizing tomorrow and starting the process. I'll try to offer an update Monday night.         Phil

Date: Tue, 23 Oct. 2000
From: Phil Pierce
To: Gabrielle Buel
Cc: Pat Kane, Joe Nelson
Subject: Re: Looking good

Hi Gabrielle - it is going well and starting to go faster. As of now, the truss work is done. The floor beams are in. The siding will probably be finished in a day or two. The long deck panels should be going in any time now. The north abutment is being finished on the approach with some short sections of stone retaining walls. The south approach is going to be left as is until the bridge will roll up to the abutments and be moved over the water. After the bridge is on the abutments, then the approach will be finished. Don't know if the metal roofing will go on before or after the move (if it wrinkles during the move [I don't think it will but won't guarantee it.], then it would have to be replaced.). They could be ready to move it in two weeks. We have a lot of details to work out about the move and it will be well rehearsed before we set a date.         Phil

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Joe Nelson, P.O Box 267, Jericho, VT 05465-0267, jcnelson@together.net

No part of this web site may be reproduced without the written permission of Joseph C. Nelson
Photo Copyright © 2000, Irma Petras
Photo Copyright © 2001, Phil Pierce
Photo Copyright © 2001, Dick Wilson
This file revised January 16, 2001, March 31, 2001