Mull Covered Bridge, East of Burgoon Ohio

Date added: April 30, 2024 Categories:
West portal and north side (1974)

The Mull Covered Bridge was named for Amos Mull who lived nearby years ago. As it was built in 1851, the Mull Bridge is one of the oldest covered bridges in Ohio and one of only 3 covered spans in the northwest quarter of the state. In addition, the Mull Bridge is one of only 11 Town Lattice trusses left in Ohio.

In 1962, the county built a new bridge over Wolfe Creek and by-passed the old covered bridge which is closed to vehicular traffic. A turn-around has been provided for the convenience of tourists wishing to visit the old bridge. In ceremonies held in late August 1962, the old bridge was formally dedicated as a memento of the past and the new bridge officially opened to traffic. At this time, the county commissioners formally gave the Sandusky County Historical Society the right to maintain the Mull Covered Bridge for historical purposes.

Bridge Description

The Mull Covered Bridge is a two-span wooden truss covered bridge spanning the east branch of Wolfe Creek in Ballville Township section 31, Sandusky County, Ohio. The bridge is just south off County Road 9. This covered bridge has vertical, high-boarded siding, a sheet metal roof, straight portals, and stone abutments. The concrete pier is a later addition.

The Mull Bridge is built on the Town Lattice truss plan patented in 1820 by Ithiel Town, an architect and builder of New Haven, Connecticut. In his book, Covered Bridges of the Northeast, Richard S. Allen describes the Town Lattice truss as an uninterrupted series of crisscrossed diagonals forming overlapped triangles. These web members were fastened at their points of intersection so that independent action of any one triangle was impossible. This was the secret of the strength of the Town truss. Pine or spruce plank was the usual material used in the Town truss and holes were bored into the planks at every lattice intersection and at the places where the lattices were secured to the upper and lower chords. Wooden connecting pins called treenails or "trunnels" made of oak were soaked in oil and driven into these holes with a long-handled mallet called a Beetle (pronounced "biddle"). There were approximately 2,592 holes in a 100' lattice highway bridge requiring 912 trunnels to pin it together. These lattice trusses were laid out in a field adjacent to the bridge site and assembled and then the truss was jockeyed out over the river on falsework. The Town Lattice truss was very popular for both highway and railroad use. For railroad use, the lattice trusses were doubled for extra strength. This truss type was built in all the New England States, most of the Southern States and the Mid-West.

Except for the addition of the center pier, the outward appearance of the Mull Bridge has changed little over the years. The overall length is 110' with a 97' clear span. There is a 14' roadway and a 12' clearance. The siding and portals are unpainted.

Mull Covered Bridge, East of Burgoon Ohio West portal (1974)
West portal (1974)

Mull Covered Bridge, East of Burgoon Ohio West portal and north side (1974)
West portal and north side (1974)

Mull Covered Bridge, East of Burgoon Ohio Interior view of the Town Lattice trusses (1974)
Interior view of the Town Lattice trusses (1974)