From the Files of the Rochester Historical Society

It does seem lately that whenever you turn on the news, there is a story of a bridge in trouble. Bridges are either being severely damaged or burned by large trucks or completely brought down by barges. Then there are the ones that are just old and worn out.

            Not that many years ago, Rochester had its own dramatic bridge event when two large trucks coming from opposite directions decided to cross the narrow bridge over Leonard’s Pond. While the bridge suffered some damage, the trucks didn’t fare very well, and a heroic rescue was involved.

            The bridge story that I found in the files at the museum is of a different sort. In 1962, it seems that the same bridge was closed to traffic because a portion of it was settling into the pond. The picture with this article shows the work being done to correct the problem at Hiller’s Bridge.

            The area to the side needed to be dug out to allow for fill and boulders to be placed in order to stabilize the bridge. In charge of the work was highway surveyor, Andrew H. Burke. The job was made doubly difficult, because the repairs needed to be done in the spring when the water level of Leonard’s Pond was high. The article doesn’t tell how long residents had to find ways to get to the other side of the pond.

By Connie Eshbach

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