Mennonite Buggy Bridge – St. Jacobs
This bridge is near the dam I posted pictures of recently. At times of high water it can be completely submerged. Below is a description from the Township of Woolwich web site. http://www.woolwich.ca/en/tourism/OtherBridges.asp
This seven span concrete low level bridge is located west of the village of St. Jacobs on Woolwich Township Road 21. The bridge is adjacent to the St. Jacobs Dam. The first dam on this site was built in the 1840s to provide power for a sawmill. The wooden dam was later replaced by a concrete structure. The one-lane road surface is only about two feet above the normal river level, and there are no railings since the river floods at this point each year.
The current bridge was built in 1962 by members of the Old Order Mennonite community for a cost of $2,500.00; all labour was provided by volunteers. The bridge was designed so water and ice would not do any damage in time of flooding. Other bridges constructed on this site had been washed away or damaged by high waters.
Today, if you go to visit this bridge and the orange gates are closed; water will be flowing over the bridge surface. The gates were installed after a dramatic rescue of a young Mennonite couple who had been swept off the bridge by fast flowing waters while crossing in a horse-drawn buggy.