Narrows Covered Bridge

The Narrows Covered Bridge
National Register of Historic Places
The Narrows of Sugar Creek (Turkey Run State Park)
Official name: The Narrows Covered Bridge
Named for: nearby "Narrows" on Sugar Creek.
Country  United States
State  Indiana
County Parke
Township Sugar Creek
Road Narrows Road Road bypasses bridge, open to pedestrians
City Turkey Run State Park
Crosses Sugar Creek, Parke County, Indiana
Coordinates 39°53′27.68″N 87°11′8.46″W / 39.8910222°N 87.1856833°W / 39.8910222; -87.1856833Coordinates: 39°53′27.68″N 87°11′8.46″W / 39.8910222°N 87.1856833°W / 39.8910222; -87.1856833
Length 137 ft (42 m) 121ft +8ft overhangs on each end
Width 16.5 ft (5 m)
Clearance 12.5 ft (4 m)
Builder Britton, J.A.
Design Burr Arch truss single-span bridge
Material Wood
Built 1882 Original Cost $3,400
 - Rebuilt 1977
Owned and Maintained by State of Indiana Department of Natural Resources
WGCB Number #14-61-36[1]
Added to NRHP Dec 22, 1978
NRHP Ref# 78000404[2]
MPS Parke County Covered Bridges TR
Location of the The Narrows Bridge in Indiana
Location of Indiana in the United States

The Narrows Covered Bridge crosses Sugar Creek at the eastern edge of Turkey Run State Park and is a single span Burr Arch Truss covered bridge structure that was built by Joseph A. Britton in 1882.[3][4]

It was added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1978.[2]


The Narrows Covered Bridge was built to replace the previous bridge that Salmon Lusk had built in 1847, which itself had been built to replace the bridge he'd built in 1840. The first bridge was destroyed in 1847 and the second in 1875.

The Parke County Commissioners didn't decided to replace the bridge for several years and by then iron bridges were becoming popular. Finally on August 24, 1882 the first bids opened. These included: Smith Iron Works(iron)- @$6,680, Wrought Iron Bridge Co.(iron)- @$5,706, King Iron Bridge Co.(iron)- @$2,904, Columbia Bridge Works(iron)- @$3,288, G.F. Haynes(wood)- @$2,704, and J.A. Britton(wood)- $3,750 total. Except for Mr. Britton's bid the others may or may not include the cost for the abutments or other costs. At any rate, all of the bids were rejected.

J.A. Britton was later awarded the contract for $3,400. This bridge has been acclaimed as the first in J.A. Britton’s illustrious covered bridge career. Some purists though have criticized the pointed arch joints and it can be noted that J. A. Britton built a Billie Creek Bridge in 1880, but it was probably an open bridge.

Joseph A. Britton’s first wife died while he was working on the Narrows Bridge. He later met his second wife, who was living at a farm not far from the narrows, while working on the bridge.[3]

See also


  2. 1 2 National Park Service (2007-01-23). "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service.
  3. 1 2 "Narrows Covered Bridge". Parke County Incorporated / Parke County Convention and Visitors Commission. Retrieved 2012-10-18.
  4. "Indiana State Historic Architectural and Archaeological Research Database (SHAARD)" (Searchable database). Department of Natural Resources, Division of Historic Preservation and Archaeology. Retrieved 2016-06-01. Note: This includes Charles Felkner (December 1977). "National Register of Historic Places Inventory Nomination Form: Parke County Covered Bridge Historic District" (PDF). Retrieved 2016-06-01., Site map, and Accompanying photographs.
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