Western Maryland Railway Lift Bridge - Williamsport
Susan Rissi Tregoning
Photograph - Photography
This old Railroad lift bridge across the C&O Canal can be visited on the left side of the Cushwa Basin in Williamsport, Maryland.
When the Western Maryland Railway reached Williamsport, Maryland, in 1873, there was a clash of transportation modes with the railroad tracks needing to cross the Canal. In 1923, Western Maryland Railway finally built this unique Lift Bridge allowing canal traffic to travel below the bridge when it was up. When lowered, the Western Maryland Railway could use the rail spur to deliver coal to the nearby Paul Smith Power Plant that sat between the canal and the river. The lift bridge was only used for a year. In 1924, the C&O Canal Company closed, and Williamsport saw its last canal boat.
In 2016, the Lift Bridge was raised to expand the canal boat ride from the Cushwa Basin. Access from the Visitors Center to the towpath was lost at that time, and the stairs and platform had to be added to the bridge. It is part of the Chesapeake & Ohio Canal National Historical Park.
Copyright 2020 Susan Rissi Tregoning
October 10th, 2020
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