Purchase a four-pack of 4″x4″ slate coaster featuring the iconic 1930 Veterans Memorial Bridge that spans the Susquehanna River between Columbia and Wrightsville, PA. Each coaster was created using a 10-watt laser to engrave the image onto the slate permanently. Click here to purchase your slate coaster set.
The Columbia–Wrightsville Bridge, officially the Veterans Memorial Bridge, spans the Susquehanna River between Columbia and Wrightsville, Pennsylvania, and carries Pennsylvania Route 462. Built originally as the Lancaster-York Intercounty Bridge, construction began in 1929, and the bridge opened on September 30, 1930. On November 11, 1980, it was officially dedicated as Veterans Memorial Bridge, though it is still referenced locally as the Columbia–Wrightsville Bridge.
In nominating the present Columbia–Wrightsville Bridge as an engineering landmark, the Pennsylvania section of the American Society of Civil Engineers noted that it is “a splendid example of the graceful multiple-span, reinforced-concrete arched form popular in early 20th Century highway bridges in the United States.” The bridge is designated State Route 462 and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places, and is also a National Historic Civil Engineering Landmark.
Designed by James B. Long and built by Glen Wiley and Glenway Maxon (Wiley-Maxon Construction Company), it cost $2,484,000 (equivalent to $43.51 million in 2022), plus an early completion bonus of $56,400 (equivalent to $988,011.16 in 2022). Constructed of reinforced concrete, the 5,183-foot-long bridge (6,657 feet including spans over land) has 27 river piers, 22 approach piers, a 38-foot-wide two-lane roadway, and a 6-foot-wide sidewalk. Upwards of 100,000 cubic yards of concrete and 8 million pounds of steel reinforcing rods were used, and coffer dams were built to aid in construction. Each span consists of three separate concrete ribs connected at five points by horizontal concrete struts, with the longest span measuring 185 feet.
Tolls of 25 cents per vehicle were charged when the bridge first opened (equivalent to $4.38 in 2022) and ended on January 31, 1943, when the bond issue was retired. Sometime after World War II, the original bridge lights were replaced with newer lighting.
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1894 map of Columbia, Pennsylvania$27.99 – $34.99