In 1870, the Germantown Covered Bridge was built and was originally located on the Dayton Pike. In 1911, the bridge was moved to its present location, where it has been restored and beautified as a link with Ohio’s early history. It is a symbol of individual initiative in America’s pioneer days.
The Germantown Covered Bridge is 105 feet long. The bridge crosses the Little Twin Creek with a bed width of 80 feet at the bridge site. The Little Twin Creek drains a small portion of southwestern Montgomery County. Little Twin Creek is normally a shallow stream and mostly dries up in the summer months.
The Truss design: the inverted steel bowstring arch has no siding so the entire truss may be viewed externally. The curve of the bowstring combined with the wooden/steel compression/tension members, and the crisscross steel tie rods form an enticing geometrical configurations. The floor planking laid crosswise and the roof is shingled. The bridge has one span and rests on cut stone abutments.
Presently, the Germantown Covered Bridge is closed to vehicles but is open for pedestrian traffic only. The bridge is one of the more famous covered bridges in Ohio and in the United States because of its one of only two inverted bowstring suspension bridges left in the world. The other inverted bowstring is the John Bright #2 now located, after its move and total renovation at Ohio University’s Lancaster Branch Campus in Fairfield County. The Germantown is the only one that has a strictly Bowstring Truss without any additional supports added.
The Germantown is quite spectacular. In 1963, the bridge became dangerous and was closed to traffic. At that time the people of Germantown chose to preserve it as a landmark. A committee of twelve civic leaders was officially appointed by Mayor Ross Brewer and the work started. Miami Valley business firms offered their services, evaluating the bridge as a genuine historic landmark. The work was completed without assistance from the village budget. The bridge symbolizes respect for American heritage and tradition. Germantown is a historic village which celebrates its heritage with festivals such as an Octoberfest and a Pretzel Festival. The Germantown Covered Bridge is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
Directions: In Germantown, the bridge crosses Little Twin Creek
A note card of this bridge can be purchased in our store.