Note: Although this is a part of a series, each article can be read individually and in any order. Stops on this journey include: Neff’s Mill Covered Bridge, Lime Valley Covered Bridge, Byerland Mennonite Meetinghouse, Baumgardner’s Mill Covered Bridge, Colemanville Covered Bridge, Forry’s Mill Covered Bridge, Siegrist’s Mill Covered Bridge, Kauffman’s Distillery Covered Bridge, and Shearer’s Covered Bridge.
There are times when the GPS likes to say the direct route is not the fastest and this was one of those times. Whereas I would have turned left onto Pequea Lane to Lime Valley Road, the GPS demanded I continue westward on Penn Grant Road, through the intersection with Lampeter Road, then turning southward on South View Road. Following the wisdom presented by the GPS, I was soon at the intersection with Lime Valley Road.
Approaching the intersection, I could see the next covered bridge ahead of me on Brenneman Road. Bearing onto Brenneman Road, I did not immediately see a safe place to pull off and continued through the bridge. Upon exiting the bridge, the historical plaque appeared on my left and I pulled to that side of the road and parked. Fog still lingered but the thick fog which had blanketed the land at Neff’s Mill Covered Bridge – located a little over a mile upstream – had mostly lifted.
Stepping out of the vehicle, I studied the bridge over Pequea Creek. The covered bridge features a single span, double Burr trusses, and has a length of 103 feet that connects Strasburg and West Lampeter Townships. Painted the traditional red, Lime Valley Covered Bridge also has the approaches painted white.
The Lime Valley Covered Bridge is known by a number of names including Strasburg, Lime Valley Twin #2, Huntzinger’s Mill, and Pequea #8. The bridge was originally built in 1871 and was a “Twin” to another bridge that had existed roughly 200 feet from the current bridge.
According to the historical placard, in 1871, Joseph Cramer was awarded the contract to erect the Lime Valley Covered Bridge and that same year, Elias McMellen began construction of the bridge. The bridge stood for 124 years before undergoing a complete renovation in 1995. Note: the builder of the covered bridge varies depending upon what source is used. I wonder if either Cramer lost the bid to build the bridge or if the project was outsourced to McMellen for some reason.
I was in the process of photographing the bridge when a car pulled to the edge of the road in front of my vehicle. A couple with a young child – I would guess he was around five years old – got out and started toward the bridge, pausing once they realized I was photographing the bridge. “But mommy! I want to see the bridge!” the young boy whined, tugging at her arm. I smiled at her attempts to contain his excitement as she explained what I was doing and they had to wait a moment before they could look at it. Not wanting to hold back his excitement too long, I finished taking my pictures and told them the bridge was theirs and I could only smile as the youngster explained the truss designs informed them the bridge was theirs.
I smiled as I listened to the youngster informing his parents about the truss type. I could see them nodding, but the look on their face told it all – they had no idea what he was talking about. As I drove away, I could only hope they continued to encourage his love of covered bridges as I left them exploring the beautiful Lime Valley Covered Bridge.