People come to Parke County, Indiana, for two main reasons: to see the many covered bridges there, and to hike over the hills and through the canyons in Turkey Run State Park. Within the park, you can hike to one of the covered bridges.
The Narrows covered bridge was completed in 1882, and is considered the first of J. A. Britton’s many covered bridges in the county.
Like most of Parke County’s covered bridges, it features a Burr arch truss design. Those giant curved members are the Burr arches.
The bridge spans Sugar Creek where it narrows, hence the name of both the bridge and the road. If you’re ever out this way, you can rent a canoe and paddle through Turkey Run on the creek. I did it once with my sons, and except for the fact that my sons weren’t interested in helping paddle, it was fun.
It’s easy to get underneath this wooden bridge, as a rocky path passes beneath it on its north side. If you look hard, you can see those curved Burr arches jutting out and into the rock on the far end of the bridge.
1958 is mighty late for a concrete arch bridge to be built in Indiana. It came at the very tail end of the concrete arch era. I’m surprised a common steel beam bridge wasn’t built here then. They became all the rage at about this time and are the main kind of bridge built in the US today.
If you’re interested in seeing this bridge, you can get there from Narrows Road of course, or by hiking Trails 1 or 2 inside Turkey Run. The trails give you these lovely side views of the bridge.
I made these photos in 2011 on a trip to Turkey Run with my sons. We went at least once a year while they were still growing up. I found them while I was culling junk and duplicates from my photo library, and liked them enough to share them now.
I can’t believe that when my friend Dawn and I made our tour of Fulton County’s round barns ten years ago that I didn’t upload all of my photographs to Flickr. I uploaded photos of only one round barn, the one below. Dawn and I got to tour it. I wrote about it here.
Fulton County has eight round barns, though I’m sure it used to be far more. Several of the barns are easily seen from county roads.
A few of the barns are on the Fulton County Museum site. This is one.
This is another. On the day we visited, they were celebrating old tractors and there was a bit of a fair/flea-market atmosphere.
A couple round barns were partially hidden from the road. We weren’t about to trespass to get better photographs, but that didn’t prevent one property owner from driving out to warn us away.
This final round barn is the pro shop for the golf course in Rochester’s Lakeview Park. It was built in 1910, but received extensive renovations when it was moved to the park.
Most of these barns were built in the 1910s after Purdue University began recommending them. They were efficient and economical in their time. For an explanation of why, check out this article at the Fulton County Historical Society.
Not long ago I exchanged blog comments with someone in which I mentioned the multitude of wind turbines along I-65 in northwest Indiana. I thought I’d made some photos of them, but I couldn’t find them in my Flickr space. That would be because I didn’t upload them there. While continuing with my project to delete photographs I no longer want to keep — duplicates and failures — I came upon my photos of the wind farm. I made them while driving to Chicago in late summer of 2011.
Yes, I made these photos while I drove. I shot indiscriminately, vaguely aiming my Canon PowerShot S95 out the window while I kept my eye on the road.
Indianapolis from Crown Hill Canon PowerShot S95 2011
This is the view from the highest elevation in Indianapolis. This spot is inside the sprawling Crown Hill Cemetery — indeed, this spot is atop Crown Hill itself. That’s where Indiana’s poet, James Whitcomb Riley, is buried.
Indianapolis’s skyline isn’t as rich as that of more major cities, but it is distinctive. The tallest building is Salesforce Tower, previously Chase Tower, previously Bank One Tower, originally American Fletcher Tower.
I’ve written about the National Road in Illinois many times before. But as I work to deprecate my old Roads site, I need to bring a few articles about the road in Illinois from there to here. This is one of them. This is based on recent research and several visits: two in 2007, one in 2009, and one in 2014.
Shortly US 40 and the National Road reach Livingston, a very small town just east of Marshall. I’m not sure why the National Road Historic Byway considers the road through Livingston a spur route. All of my research indicates that the road through Livingston was the National Road.
I wasn’t so sure of that when I first researched the road here. The aerial maps, and the labels placed on the roads, confused the heck out of me. But after looking at historic aerial imagery (the only source of which I could find is copyrighted, and would cost to be able to share here) I’m pretty sure that the original routing through Livingston and on into Marshall followed the route I added in green, to include what the map labels Hill Top Orchard Road in Livingston. The western (left) edge of this map is the eastern outskirts of Marshall. Modern US 40 disrupted the original National Road route a little here, but you can trace where it would have been easily enough. Click the map to see it larger.
The eastern end of this alignment is covered in grass. I made this eastbound photo in 2007.
Westbound, the old road heads into the woods.
Shortly the road emerges from the woods, bricks intact. Eastbound.
It heads on into tiny Livingston, the bricks covered in asphalt. Westbound.
There isn’t much to show about Livingston; it’s just a handful of houses. After it passes through Livingston, the road curves to rejoin US 40. The old brick highway continues straight. Westbound.
The bricks end on the banks of Big Creek. The bridge here was removed. On our 2007 trip, Michael and I found the road on the other side of this creek. I didn’t get a good photo of the bridge’s remnants, but Michael did. He made this eastbound photo from the creek’s west bank.
Here’s the road leading away from the creek, westbound. 2014 photo. The curve at the end is not part of the National Road; it was added to connect this segment to US 40. The National Road originally kept going straight from here.
I’m not sure why, but the roadway is covered with earth from that point. 2007 photo, westbound.
We found a state right-of-way marker along this path, confirming for us that we were still on the National Road. Later, I found concrete consistent with the edge of the U-shaped roadbed into which the bricks were once laid.
I found a few bricks like this one, all broken, some in the ground. Is that a date on the brick? February 12, 192x? The bricks along the road so far had all been plain-faced and in shades of red, so I wasn’t sure whether this was a road brick or not.
Fallen trees blocked our path. We felt like we’d seen enough anyway, so we walked back to the car and drove US 40 the short distance to where the National Road crossed 40 on its way to Marshall.