The Bridge of Remembrance in Christchurch, New Zealand, is dedicated to as a memorial to those who participated in World War I and World War II as well as conflicts in Borneo, Korea, Malaya and Vietnam. The Cashel Street bridge over the Avon River initially opened in 1873. Mrs. Wyn Irwin is credited with raising the idea for a memorial atop the bridge in a July 24, 1919, letter to The Press on 24 July 1919. Lord Jellicoe unveiled the monument on Armistice Day (Nov. 11) in 1924. It closed to vehicle traffic in 1976. Following the February 2011 Christchurch earthquake, New Zealand spent more than NZD 2 million to strengthen the historic bridge.
The Brooklyn Bridge is perhaps the most famous bridge in the United States. The hybrid cable-stayed/suspension bridge spans the East River and was completed in 1883 to connect Manhattan and Brooklyn. The bridge was originally known as the New York and Brooklyn Bridge and the East River Bridge.
The Concord Covered Bridge over Nickajack Creek was built in 1872 to replace an earlier bridge destroyed during the Civil War. The one-lane bridge, also known as Nickajack Creek Covered Bridge, is more than 130 feet long and 16 feet wide and is a part of the Covered Bridge Historic District, so named for the bridge. An earlier bridge was built in the area in 1848, but troops under Union Gen. William T. Sherman burned the span on July 4, 1864. The current bridge was renovated or upgraded in the 1950s and again in 1999. Much of the traffic that used to cross the bridge was diverted to the East-West Connector when it opened in the 1990s. The one-lane bridge has a relatively low clearance, and several times every year motorists driving vehicles too big for the bridge crash into the structure and damage it.
The most impressive railroad relic in Clarksville, Tenn., is the swing bridge over the Cumberland River. With stone pillars dating to 1859, the 678-foot-long bridge is normally more than 50 feet above the river and can swing to allow river traffic to pass when the water level is high.
The Golden Gate Bridge is an icon of San Francisco. The famed bridge opened on May 27, 1937. To experience the bridge’s magnitude, head to Fort Point. This well-preserved Civil War era post is located on the southern side of the Golden Gate strait at the entrance of San Francisco Bay.
The “Murmur Trestle” has for years attracted R.E.M. fans from around the globe. Gracing the back of the band’s 1983 album “Murmur,” the bridge is best known today as the Murmur Trestle. The trestle was built in 1883 and served the Georgia Railroad and later CSX Transportation and was last used in 1998. Athens-Clarke County purchased the trestle in 2000.
The Ponte di Rialto (or Rialto Bridge in English) is one of the most famous bridges in Italy. The structure is the oldest of the four bridges spanning the Grand Canal in Venice and connects the districts (sestieri) of San Marco and San Polo. It was first built as a pontoon bridge in the 12th century but has been rebuilt several times since then.
The Ponte Vecchio (Old Bridge) traverses the narrowest point of the Arno river. The current bridge dates to 1345, and miraculously, German troops didn’t destroy the bride as they fled the city during World War II. It is noted for shops along the bridge.
Queen Emma Bridge is a floating pontoon bridge across St. Anna Bay connecting the Punda and Otrobanda quarters of Willemstad. The bridge, formerly a toll bridge, was first built in 1888 and renovated in 1939. The bridge, nicknamed “Our Swinging Old Lady,” regularly opens to allow ships to enter the bay. When open, ferries transport people from Punda and Otrobanda and vice versa.
Queen Juliana Bridge, or Koningin Julianabrug in Dutch, is said to be the tallest bridge in the Caribbean. The bridge, connecting the Punda and Otrabanda sides of Willemstad, opened on April 30, 1974, and is named in honor of Juliana of the Netherlands, Queen of the Netherlands from 1948 until she abdicated the throne 1980. On Nov. 6, 1967, during construction of the bridge, a portion of the structure collapsed, killing 15 workers.
Of all the landmarks in London, Tower Bridge sits near the top of the list, perhaps trailing only its namesake tower. The bridge, built between 1886 and 1894, crosses the River Thames near the Tower of London. The structure, which features a pair of towers, is unique in that it is both a bascule (draw) and suspension bridge. The Prince of Wales, the future King Edward VII, and his wife, Alexandra of Denmark, formally opened the bridge on June 30, 1894. The 800-foot-long crossing, often mistaken for the London Bridge, features a pair of 213-feet-tall towers and a 200-foot-long central span.
When it opened in 1964, the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge was the world’s longest suspension span. The bridge was named after Giovanni da Verrazano. In 1524, he became the first European explorer to sail into New York Harbor. Its 693-foot-tall towers are 1 5/8 inches farther apart at their tops than at their bases because the 4,260-foot-long required engineers to take into the account curvature of the Earth. Each tower weighs 27,000 tons and is held together with three million rivets and one million bolts. Seasonal contractions and expansions of the steel cables cause the double-decked roadway to be 12 feet lower in the summer than in the winter.
The Waco Suspension Bridge opened to traffic in January 1870, making it roughly 13 years older than the more famous Brooklyn Bridge. The 475-foot-long bridge forever changed travel in the area. Built at an estimated cost of roughly $141,000 (estimates vary) and designed by Thomas M. Griffith, the bridge was the first major suspension bridge in the state of Texas.
The 2,376-foot-long Walnut Street Bridge, constructed between 1889 and 1891, was the first to connect Chattanooga, Tennessee’s downtown with North Chattanooga (or North Shore). According to the Historic American Engineering Record, “The bridge was apparently the first non-military highway bridge across the Tennessee River.” Streetcars formerly ran across the bridge, which was open to vehicle traffic until May 11, 1978. The bridge was the site of two lynchings, Alfred Blount on February 14, 1893, and Ed Johnson on March 19, 1906.