Explore the history and beauty of Georgia’s covered bridges

Georgia’s covered bridges are a throwback to a bygone era, but their beauty remains all these years later.

Many of those covered bridges, which were sheltered to protect the decaying wooden bridges from weather conditions, haven't survived over the years, but there are still just under 20 covered bridges in Georgia, according to the National Society for the Preservation of Covered Bridges. They each have their own unique charm and characteristics, and  all are worth exploring.

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Plan for a day of sightseeing around these six bridges and their nearby communities:

Credit: gastateparks.org

Credit: gastateparks.org

Watson Mill Bridge

650 Watson Mill Road, Comer

At 229 feet long, Watson Mill Bridge is the longest covered bridge in the state and one of the longest in the U.S. It was built in 1885 by Washington (W.W.) King and is supported by a Town lattice truss system and wooden pins. It's located in Watson Mill Bridge State Park and was originally built to allow access to a nearby mill.

Poole’s Mill Bridge

7725 Pooles Mill Road, Cumming

Built in 1901 by Bud Gentry, Poole's Mill Covered Bridge is over Settledown Creek in Poole's Mill Park. It has a Town lattice truss that has a distinctive and interesting criss-cross pattern. The bridge's construction was originally started by another builder who put some holes in the wrong place, and they can still be seen today.

Credit: Barbara Gaddis via Flickr

Credit: Barbara Gaddis via Flickr

Concord Road Bridge

Concord Road SW, Smyrna

This bridge has seen several changes over the years and still allows vehicle traffic. It was built over Nickajack Creek in 1848, was burned during the Civil War and then was rebuilt in 1872. After an upgrade in the 1950s, it was renovated in 1999. It’s about three miles from the Concord Cemetery, and it’s rumored to be haunted by three little girls who supposedly drowned in the waters below the bridge. Unlike most of Georgia’s covered bridges, this one is in a fairly high traffic area. It has a seven foot clearance, and it gets smacked by large vehicles “about once a month.” According to a previous AJC report by Ben Brasch, the bridge has been hit by a vehicle 13 times since the $800,000 renovation of the bridge. Cobb County continues to try to find the best way to keep drivers of too-tall vehicles from trying to cross the bridge.

Cromer’s Mill Bridge

Baker Rd., between Cromer’s Bridge Rd. and GA Hwy 106 E, Carnesville

Spanning Nails Creek, this bridge was named after the Cromer family's woolen mill, which was later joined by a cotton, flour and saw mill in the community. Franklin County officials commissioned the building of the 110-foot bridge, and a descendant of the original Cromer family built the stone abutments.

Coheelee Creek Bridge

Georgia Highway 62 and Old River Road, Blakely

Coheelee Creek Bridge is said to be the southernmost historic covered bridge in the U.S. Built in 1891 for a cost of $490.41, it was restored in 1994 and had further improvements in 2014. The bridge is not open for foot traffic, but there's a small park on the northern end that has picnic tables. It spans a creek that has some churning water.

Haralson Mill Bridge

4400 Haralson Mill Road, Conyers

While most wooden bridges are over a hundred years old, this bridge is quite new. Also known as the Rockdale County Covered Bridge, it was built in 1997 - the first of its kind to be built in the state since the 1890s. It’s near a historic district that includes the old mill site and a general store.