Mill Covered Bridge, Belvidere Vermont

Date added: June 16, 2024
West elevation (1974)

The Mill Covered Bridge together with one other covered wood bridge in the town of Belvidere and three bridges of the same type in the adjoining town of Waterville cross the North Branch of the Lamoille River within a distance of about five miles, comprising one of the most concentrated groups of covered bridges in Vermont. The five bridges are important and distinctive elements of the historic environment of the Lamoille River Valley.

The covered bridges of Vermont are among its most cherished and symbolic historic resources. About one hundred of the bridges still stand in the state, the highest concentration by area of covered bridges in the United States.

Bridge Description

The Mill Covered Bridge consists of a single span supported originally by flanking timber queenpost trusses. In 1971-72 the timber deck structure was replaced with four steel beams; the trusses now carry only the superstructure of the bridge. Each truss incorporates two iron suspension rods which extend from upper apexes of the diagonal braces to the bottom chords. The trusses are skewed slightly, giving the bridge its shape of a parallelogram in plan.

The Mill Bridge is 70.5 feet long overall and 15 feet wide, and has a 12-foot roadway. The wood floor, which consists of planks laid on edge directly on the steel deck beams and perpendicular to the trusses, is 64 feet long and begins two to 4.5 feet from each corner of the bridge. The approaches are concrete. The structure rests on abutments built of irregular stone slabs laid dry and capped with concrete.

On the exterior, the timbers pegged and bolted together to form the truss (and side walls) of the bridge are sheathed with unpainted flush boards hung vertically. Similar siding protects the ends of the trusses immediately inside the portals. The siding stops short of the eaves to leave strip openings along the tops of the walls.

The gable ends are also sheathed with unpainted flush boards hung vertically. The boards extend beyond the line of the walls to form half-arches under the eaves. The north portal opening is framed with a segmental arch; the south portal opening has diagonal upper corners which cover the first interior struts. The medium-pitch gable roof is covered with corrugated metal sheeting painted black.

Mill Covered Bridge, Belvidere Vermont West elevation (1974)
West elevation (1974)

Mill Covered Bridge, Belvidere Vermont South portal (1974)
South portal (1974)