Michigan Roadside Attractions – Langley Covered Bridge in St. Joseph County
Michigan Roadside Attractions is a periodic feature on Travel the Mitten that will explore the many interesting things that can be found on the highways, byways and back roads of Michigan, ranging from the interesting to unusual.
Fewer than 10 covered bridges remain in Michigan, and very few of those are open to vehicle traffic. In St. Joseph County’s Nottawa Township, the Langley Covered Bridge is not only still standing but looking as good as ever and can still be driven across. This is also the longest covered bridge in the state and due to its bright red color is a popular landmark for residents of Centreville and beyond. The bridge is both a Michigan historic site and part of the National Register of Historic Places, the text on the Michigan historic marker near the bridge reads as follows:
This is the longest of Michigan’s few remaining covered bridges. It is 282 feet long with three, ninety-four-foot spans of the Howe-truss construction. The bridge was built in 1887 by Pierce Bodmer of Parkeville, using the best quality of white pine for the frame timbers. The bridge’s name honors a pioneer Centreville family. When Sturgis Dam was built in 1910, the Langley Bridge had to be raised eight feet. In 1950-1951 extensive repairs and replacement of parts was carried out by the St. Joseph County Road Commission to preserve for the future this historic link with a bygone era.
Check out our post about two of Michigan’s other remaining covered bridges in Ada and Fallasburg at http://travelthemitten.com/landmarks/fallasburg-ada-and-whites-bridge-covered-bridges-of-kent-and-ionia-counties/