“current bridge built in 1869”
Town records indicate the original bridge at this site was constructed in 1789, however, the exact date has not been verified. The current bridge was built in 1869. According to local tradition, the bridge was built by local barn builders since the truss construction of the bridge is similar to that used in barns. When it was built, a wagon fully loaded with hay was used as a standard for the height and width of the opening. The bridge was closed in June 1974 to await town appropriations for repairs, rebuilding, or reconstruction. On Flag Day, June 14, 1975, as a part of the Swanzey Bicentennial Commission program, the Carleton Bridge was painted by residents of the town. The Carleton Bridge was the smallest of the four covered bridges to be painted by the townspeople and was completed in five hours time. The bridge is now in need of major repairs. In 1979, the New Hampshire Department of Transportation estimated that it would cost $487,000 to build a new covered bridge in its place. The Carleton Bridge is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
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